• Jessica
      Participant
      Chirps: 3
      I'm nature journaling for two reasons: to prepare for a research trip I'm taking to South Carolina in March to learn more about whimbrel and their migration, and because I ask my own students to sketch and journal in science class. I want to experience the process more fully myself so I can relate and give tips to those who get stuck. I'm also excited to hopefully have a meaningful record of my trip like many of the journalers in the video.
    • Emma
      Participant
      Chirps: 1
      I wanted to start nature journaling to learn more about what I saw in nature. I’m an avid bird watcher and I love learning about them. I think that drawing them and their environments will help me not only learn more but also help me identify them better. I would also like to learn more about the plants I see as well. Overall, my goal for this journal is to learn more about what I observe.
    • Christine
      Participant
      Chirps: 2
      Inspiration for nature journaling came to me through birdwatching and a couple of videos.   Many years ago I enjoyed the book ‘The Country Diary of an Edwardian Lady.’  I also watched the video and the series in the 1980’s.  In 2022 I saw the movie ‘Where the Crawdads Sing’ and that did it…time to take up nature journaling. I believe Shayna’s approach with what she describes as a loop - drawing, writing, and research will be a good approach for me.  I also like the boxes she cleverly uses to surround the drawings.  All of the journalers contributed amazing ideas that I will return to.  Thank You
    • Kay
      Participant
      Chirps: 2
      As a life-long birder from a family of birders and avid Colorado hiker, I've often thought that someday I'd spend more time journaling and sketching what I see. My photographs are lovely documentation but I'm aware that the "pencil is the best eye" as said by nineteenth century naturalist, Louis Agassiz. It's time to take the plunge! I appreciate the introduction highlighting a wide variety of approaches, and no doubt will try a few before settling in to the one most comfortable for me.
    • Karen
      Participant
      Chirps: 3
      I wish that I had kept a nature journal on my trip to the Galapagos. I think it would have encouraged to spend more time really looking at the local plants and animals.  Since the pandemic I have become more aware of nature in my neighborhood. I became interested in birdwatching. I have also submitted photos to Inaturalist to help me identify what I have seen. I have been hesitant to start a nature journal because I felt I wasn't a writer and certainly not an artist. I realize the only way I will gain more confidence is to practice writing and drawing.
    • Alison
      Participant
      Chirps: 7
      Learning to see more intently is my inspiration to begin nature journaling. Birding was my gateway drug to a broader appreciation of nature and the interconnectedness of everything. It has taken me a long time to get past my fear of the white page because "I'm not an artist." Keeping in mind that the purpose for me is not to make pretty pictures but to learn to see better, record details, and then research and learn more about the flora and fauna trims the ego and frees the brush. I'm startled by unexpected associations. The hue of a Red-Breasted Nuthatch spurred dreams of my red-haired brother.
    • Brian
      Participant
      Chirps: 1
      I have always been fascinated with the natural world. have been a birder for over 20 years now, it has taught me a lot not just about birds and the world we live, but a lot about myself. When i first saw examples of nature sketching and journaling, i was attracted to the peacefulness of the work. I soon realized that i could gain some life changing experiencing of learning how to do this for myself, i also intend on sharing this with my family, friends and co-workers who derive as much pleasure from the outside world as i do. i expect that this course will never really have an end, because i know that we will constantly learn from this wonderful activity, and the possibilities are endless.
    • Sujata
      Participant
      Chirps: 1
      I find spending time in nature to be a meditative experience. I have always loved the outdoors and birding has been a passion for years now. I wanted to find a way to capture my walks in nature and I'm glad that I found this course. I am blessed that i'm living close to the sea and mangroves that attract a variety of migratory birds in winter. Even though I have dismal drawing skills, I'm hoping to learn through this course and become consistent in recording the wonders of nature around me. I liked all the approaches in this video but I'm attracted to the technique of using small boxes for descriptions and details. I may try this as I start off and let it develop organically from there.
    • Betci
      Participant
      Chirps: 2
      1. Nature journaling seems like a logical step for me as a writer, birder & gardener. I have been hesitant because I can't really draw, but I'm encouraged by the suggestion that what I see has geometrical components to it. 2. I am drawn to the idea of carving out page space with boxes. I think it will be useful, at least in the beginning, because the best advice I heard was that observing over a time period -- say 2 hours -- I will see change & movement occur, potentially teaching me something or answering a question I have about my observations.  Time and patience sound like the entire process and that appeals to me as well, to be present. 3. My intention -- although I'm not sure it will happen -- is to incorporate memories. Observation lends itself to daydreaming & reminding. I'd like to document myself, my history as I document my natural view. Birding has already begun this process for me, but I've struggled with how to create the records of all the varied observations & feelings I experience as I'm hiking, looking for birds.
    • Wendy
      Participant
      Chirps: 5
      I have always enjoyed bird watching and drawing. Recently I took a water color class. I have found a wonderful sense of peace spending time outdoors observing nature and a sense of timelessness while drawing and painting. I hope that taking this course will help me develop a new habit!
    • mary
      Participant
      Chirps: 2
      Shaver's Creek, a Penn State environmental center, started offering Nature Journaling classes in January 2021. Since then, a once-a-month class has been held. I enjoy that each class offers a different topic to explore. The approach I've been using is perhaps most similar to the first example: a drawing with observations. I typically use: I notice, I wonder, It reminds me of... as my writing prompts. I have been using black pen, pencil, and colored pencils. I have not ventured into watercolor yet.
    • Ann
      Participant
      Chirps: 1
      I love being in nature whether it is in my own yard, or out on a hike.  Drawing facilitates really seeing.   I have no knack for drawing and would like to develop some skills and basic drawing techniques.  Drawing is so important to really seeing something and when I do draw I realize that I have a much greater  appreciation and connection to my subject. Watching so many people share their journals and seeing different approaches to journaling was not only helpful, but a lovely way to work into this process.  What came across in watching the film was the joy and enthusiasm each of the journalers has for drawing and journaling and sharing their journals. My father, a naturalist at heart, always carried a sketchpad with him.  In the last 25 years of his life filled over a hundred journals with his sketches, almost all of nature or travel.  It is delightful to look through these sketchbooks and see nature and the world through his eyes.  Creating my own nature journals feels like a way to connect with him. In starting out, I like the idea of dating each entry.  Boxes seem like a clear way to help organize.  I may need to play with doing multiple drawings to see what works and what doesn't.  I want to allow myself to let it come a bit organically and focus on process over product.  Lol.  I am somewhat intimidated by the beauty of the journals we saw.  I also hope to make sketching a habit.  I have a tendency to sketch on anything and then not have a consistent journal.  I am going to use a dedicated notebook for this class so that I will have it as my record.
    • Mara
      Participant
      Chirps: 4
      Across the different approaches to journaling and field sketching, the practice does two big things: 1) enhances learning and understanding (noticing greater detail, discovering through patient observation), and 2) deepens the experience (being in the moment, remembering multi-sensory details of your own experience). I found this really compelling and am excited to jump in!
    • Amador
      Participant
      Chirps: 2
      1. What inspired you to begin nature journaling? I want to acquire the sense of wonder and respect that the journalers in the video radiate. 2. Now that you’ve heard from several other journalers about their processes, and had a peek at their journals, which ideas or approaches do you want to try? From Shayna, the use of boxes to isolate / highlight the drawing, as well as her use of a magnification lens to highlight details.  Also, doing some research to better inform my entries. From Jewel, adding color swaths to represent the colors present, and to be proud of my work like she is. Understanding that my entries will get better with time and consistent effort. I thought her cactus tree was awesome! From William, being amazed like he was with the Blue Footed Booby; learning to portray depth like he did in the drawing of rock formation. From Margaret, how her sketches evolved to depict wing structure in the hummingbird. From D.J., how basic shapes are at the heart of the drawing.  And if I can draw basic shapes, I'm already doing good! From Holly, Wow! Use of water color adds a whole different dimension to the journal and brings her drawings to life.  I'm sold on water colors! And, sticking to a journaling schedule - daily or monthly, is an inspiration. From Liz, how the beauty of self is reflected in her sketches and words. To all, a debt of gratitude for sharing. Thank you, Rey Estrada
    • Barbara
      Participant
      Chirps: 1
      My Dad did nature journals. The one from high school is mostly birds. His grandkids have had tatoos done of some of the sketches in his honor (He died in 1994.) His books from the South Pacific in WWII ended up being used for toilet paper. I've been watching birds for 70 years and want to capture the memories of some of them. I'm definitely my father's daughter, but he was an incredible artist. I've only been trying for 30 years. I loved the variety of skills and viewpoints. Barb Garnier 01/05/2023
    • Geetha
      Participant
      Chirps: 10
      My inspiration to work on nature journaling started with bird-watching sessions and walking trails in nature. While exploring nature with school children, I wanted to do something interesting for them, and as a record to maintain their observations, found Nature journaling is the best way of recording.  I am very much passionate about this and wanted to learn it in a professional way to train myself and help students. Most of the Journalers in the video are good in their way. I would like to take up the concept of adding more content like the other journalers. But preferably wanted to express my thoughts through sketching by adding visual appeal to the trail/nature walk. It's similar to those ideas, except would like to add my trails, other details like the importance of the location, if bird watching, and the list of species observed, want to record all the details. My first attempt at Nature Journaling. Happy to receive the feedback from Liz and other friends Regards, Geetha Suresh IMG_5711
    • William
      Participant
      Chirps: 3
      Being able to sketch and paint outdoors has been something I have wanted to learn for the last year. Especially as a skill for when we travel. Amazingly, my wife gave me the Cornell course as a Christmas 2022 gift. What a wonderful surprise! I share two things that I did once I started to get familiar with the online course material: first, since these are watercolors that I am seeing for the first time, I painted a color chart, pictured in the lower right corner of the image below. How different some of the paints appear on paper as opposed to being in the pans in the travel kit. Secondly, I personalized the Canson sketchbook by doing my first-ever water brush composition of a scene drawn from memory, also pictured below. I separated the page and pasted it on the front cover of the book. As a beginning watercolorist, these paints on the course supply list and the water brushes are new to me. The piece below is the "loosest" that I have ever done! All those conservation and taxonomy classes in Fernow Hall prepared me to start out with a very representational approach! Thanks for a great set of beginning exercises!--Bill, January 4, 2023 DSCN8109
      • Susan
        Participant
        Chirps: 2
        well done Bill - don't be afraid to inject more emotion
    • Marsha
      Participant
      Chirps: 5
      1.  I've been journaling for travel for many years, and have incorporated sketches of nature into this practice. I love the impressionistic aspect of sketching to spark memory and feeling, which is different from photography. I have family who are birders/naturalists, and in the last 2 years introduced me to bird identification, helping me to be more attentive to nature everyday -- not just when I travel. I just retired, so saw this course and immediately felt the time spent on it would enhance my enjoyment and appreciation of nature and art. I've not yet used watercolor for the journal sketches, so this practice will help me enhance them.  2.  I like Shayna Miller's style, which is akin to mine incorporating text and sketches. I also like the variety of subject matter. I'd also like to learn to use D.J. McNeill's use of geometric shapes for (especially) birds. 3. One of the discussion participants mentioned collecting samples to add to their journal. I've done some of this, and want to continue to add pressed flowers, leaves, bird feathers, etc. to the journal. It makes it more 3-D and tactile!
    • Lori
      Participant
      Chirps: 5
      I love the combination of drawing and writing....and sometimes adding color! This will become my diary of 2023.
    • Mick
      Participant
      Chirps: 2
      I have family who are artists and talented--that talent seems to have passed me by. I want to journal to help imbed in my memory the details of the species but also the moments and feelings when I enjoyed seeing birds and nature. I intended to journal only about birds, but I have become more keenly aware and appreciative of plants (which I also greatly enjoy). I now intend to journal not just about the birds but also the environment and plants as well.
    • Carol
      Participant
      Chirps: 2
      I enjoyed seeing each and every one of these journals. Each person showed and explained their reasons for the picture they had drawn…. It meant something to them,.. it stirred a memory in time. I believe that is what  your nature journaling is supposed to do, or that is what it does for me…. What a wonderful presentation. Thank you all for sharing.
    • Brenda
      Participant
      Chirps: 10
      Hello! I like elements from both the first and the last journals (and journals). I love the idea of boxes and zooms from the first journal and the follow-up research that the journaler did post-nature encounter. From the last journal, I love the idea of daily journaling; however, I am also realistic about time constraints. Luckily, I walk through a wonderful park nearly every day to get to work, so I can still see and experience nature daily. My thinking is to take a smaller journal for notes and then work on the larger pages when I have more time. So, like the last journaler, I'll probably do monthly pages from these smaller notes. From both journals, my intentions for my journaling is 1) learn more about nature (especially birds!) and 2) build a lasting document of these experiences to share with others. Very excited to get started!
    • What appeals to you about this journaler’s style? I really liked the last journal. I can't draw at all and have an incredibly busy life at the moment. My word for this year is "notice" what if I just drew a petal, a rapid sketch of the crow sitting outside my office window? Something I could do in 5 minutes. What would you think are the goals of this journal? The goal seems to be regularly noticing and capturing what the journaler noticed. The daily discipline of painting something is appealing to me, though maybe 3 - 4 days a week might be more realistic. A page a week? What surprised you about the content? the amazing detail she captured with watercolor.  She made it sound like these pieces didn't take her long, but they look very time consuming. What elements has this journaler included that you might want to include in your journal? having many images on a page, regular documentation - daily, weekly or monthly.  I'd want to add brief descriptions as she did in the monthly pages.
    • Lauren
      Participant
      Chirps: 1
      I love that the artists’ journals reminded them of their experiences in way that photographs simply could not. There is a sweetness in each artist’s image/entry, perhaps because their personality is embedded in the images.
    • Kirstin
      Participant
      Chirps: 2
      1. I have always wanted to learn to draw and paint. As an avid naturalist and informal science educator, nature journaling seems like a good place for me to start! 2. It was very helpful to see a wide variety of journals. As a beginner artist, the polished journals filled with perfect watercolors are beautiful, but a bit intimidating. It was nice to see that simpler approaches also look great! My favorite approach is a mix of images and text, focusing on close studies of individual organisms. I would love to do a full record of an animal over an hour or so, documenting all of it's behaviors. 3. I would love to try incorporating actual specimens into the drawings. For example, if I painted a bird on a branch; I could mount a sample of that branch on the page and incorporate it into the painting.