• Wanda
      Participant
      Chirps: 2
      I started yesterday and my first journal entry was looking out the window while I was volunteering at the library bookstore. There were trees outside an old building. I was viewing the back of the structure. I’m fascinated by trees and find drawing them difficult. I’m hoping to get some tips and ideas from the class and nature journaling seems a good tool for me to use to continue looking at and trying to capture the trees I see outside my home and in the woods and while visiting different places. Thanks. Wanda 9/16
    • Wanda
      Participant
      Chirps: 2
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    • Tara Mc
      Participant
      Chirps: 14
      1 what inspired me to try nature journaling? the shifting of the seasons and the beauty of seed pods. a body memory of sketching decades ago. paying attention to something in nature can shift the inner dialogue, create a more open and accepting conversation with self, the world, helpful in the fall as the cold closes in... 2 I like the drawing a day, a page of daily drawings, the close up details, the memory aid the drawings provide, ID support. I hope to capture my various garden beds so I recall what is there and add care notes.
    • Helen
      Participant
      Chirps: 2
      I am interested in journaling to try to capture those moments that are significant that I miss with my camera (I am a wildlife photographer).  Sometimes there are moments that can not be recorded as a photo or film due to poor conditions of one kind or another.  Also sometimes I may hear a story of something that has happened near where I live and I missed seeing it but some how it stayed in my awareness so I would like to be able to draw and paint it along with telling the story.
    • Barbara
      Participant
      Chirps: 1
      I love the page where the journal writer documented several different kinds of ferns. I currently am interested in plants - drawing them and identifying them - botany.
    • Lindsay
      Participant
      Chirps: 2
      1. I really enjoyed the field journals and field collection notes I did for my archaeology and botany classes. I joined this class because I'd like to start incorporating watercolour but have never worked with that medium. 2. The journals that had notes to go with the sketches felt the most familiar and fit best with how I process information. 3. I really liked how many different types of physical journals were shown - small, large, blank, lined, landscape or portrait, cards or books - it emphasized how personal and versatile this all is. There really isn't a "one way is the correct way".
    • Teri
      Participant
      Chirps: 1
      Nature is incredibly beautiful and I want to capture it all.  I have been a nature photographer for many years and now I want to try other ways to record my experiences with nature.  I have long admired those that keep nature journals and the beauty that can be found in these journals.  I very much enjoyed the presentation on the different styles of nature journals and I liked them all but I think I am going to start out with a box approach.  I think this will help me get started then see what develops from there.  This summer I have been identifying the plants on my property and would like to really get to know them and I can't think of any better way than drawing them.  I have also been a birdwatcher for awhile and have fun photographing them but like with the plants I want to get to know them even better and again I see this through a nature journal.
    • Fin
      Participant
      Chirps: 2
      While studying birds I would like to have a beautiful way to document what I've seen and the memories that I've made. I like the journals with landscapes in them because they hold special memories of what was experienced that day. Watercolor is one approach I would like to attempt because there are so many ways to show color.
    • Curt
      Participant
      Chirps: 2
      I will annotate my sketches with the date time and weather and location. I will sketch part of a scene that interest me and not try and make a artistic rendering in the field.   I think what inspired me to try nature journalling is the desire to capture detail and learn more about the object that I am interested in or seen and become a little bit more observant of what’s around me. Taking pictures doesn’t really do justice to what I want to do. I might try and take pictures of what I am sketching and perhaps seeling some details that I may not have time to draw due to weather or other things that might be a priority at that moment. I’m sure I will develop other techniques that I haven’t thought of yet once I start journaling. I’m looking forward to seeing exactly what I end up doing.
    • Kathy
      Participant
      Chirps: 3
      Lately, I haven't been doing art or getting out into nature as much as I used to. I see this as a way that inspires me to do both in a new way. I'm not feeling a need to choose a particular journalistic style at all. I'm approaching this as an experiment of discovery. I often let art emerge and surprise me. Of course, trying to capture what some natural object looks like is  quite different than the more free-form art I've done in the past. But perhaps I will find a way to converge them. My aim isn't necessarily to create a field guide but rather to capture my own feelings and observations of nature. It will be interesting to see what evolves.
    • elaine
      Participant
      Chirps: 3
      I am so excited to begin this journey. I am just learning how to watercolor, but enjoy doing artistic endeavors. I do journal (but not regularly) and often written about my travels, using my husband’s photographs as inspiration. I love to walk and ponder nature; I enjoy watching the birds that visit my feeders over the seasons and also love to putter about in my flower and vegetable gardens. I am hoping that this course helps me to be more attentive to the little things — much like carrying a camera can focus attention. I so enjoyed the ways each of the journalists shared their approaches. I liked the observations about how their writing and sketching changed over time: isn’t that the reason why we write….to learn, to grow, to become? I also liked the way that the writings merged with the drawings and paintings, each inspiring the other.  I hadn’t thought about the more active approach to observation — generating questions while writing and sketching — but I would like to adopt that approach, too.
    • Fiona
      Participant
      Chirps: 2
      1. I was inspired specifically by John Muir Laws' form of nature journaling, which is about inquiry and observation, rather than just drawing or writing. I work with kids and teach a lot about science, so this method really appeals to me, and has been very rewarding on a personal level as well. 2. I really liked the first journal, particularly when her drawings began to burst out of the boxes - I also thought it made them look more vibrant and alive, and I think I might try to incorporate that. 3. One small thing I've learned from Laws' work is making a little bubble question mark right next to a question or a list of questions - it makes the page look more fun and also helps to organize it.
    • Cecilia Louise
      Participant
      Chirps: 13
      1. I love drawing, but I also love writing, so something that combined both seemed like the perfect thing to do. I also want to get better at sketching birds and filling in with watercolour. 2. I was really inspired by the one that had the "fill in a whole page per month" idea, because that way, over time, you can get a really good idea of what it looks like where you live at a certain time of year. 3. Right now, I don't really have a different idea, I just want to try various methods until I find the one that works for me.
    • Kathy
      Participant
      Chirps: 4
      One of the main reasons I started nature journaling was to learn more about plants, identifying them, seeing their features more clearly,  noticing where they are growing and what insects and other animals might be interested in them. I also just wanted to spend more time outdoors, really noticing things--sitting long enough to really observe and not just being busy tending a garden (nose pointing at the ground) or mowing the grass.
    • Cathleen
      Participant
      Chirps: 7
      Recently retired birdwatcher, I have kept travel journals but want to learn to sketch birds from life.  I like the notation of date, weather etc and the observational notes.  I also like breaking down the birds into shapes.
    • Timothy
      Participant
      Chirps: 1
      I am a retired field environmental professional that used what we now call journaling throughout my career to document what I found in the field.   I worked a great deal on mine land reclamation, hazardous waste clean up and nuclear waste clean up.   Thus, most of those journaling books are now in part of legal case files and project record archives and thus out of my reach.   All beginning journal keepers should note that, although thousand of photographs were taken of the sites I worked on, it was always my journal pages, sketches, and watercolors that ended up on the big screen in front of the jury---go figure.  I am now excited to start my personal nature journal to document the many wonders of my new home's backyard which is on a big water body called an Resaca (look it up, it not a river or a lake). As an old field guy I have one plea; please use alpha-numeric dating for your dates (example: 23OCT2017), and military time (1704H = 5:04 pm) on all your enters.  All other date/time notations can lead to multiple interpretations of when the notations were made.  This, in turn, leads to the notations, sketches, watercolors, etc. being thrown out of any data set or evidence file (scientific or legal).   It is so heart breaking to see good work rendered unusable for such a silly reason.   Remember, you can never predict when what you document will become important to society.
      • Curt
        Participant
        Chirps: 2
        I like the alpha-numeric suggestion.  I see many museums take that approach.  No doubt clarity is driving this.
    • Cynthia Schoen
      Participant
      Chirps: 5
      I love this idea although I haven't started my nature journal yet. I have kept drawing journals, often landscapes, but without the words to accompany it, and the goal of observing nature closely, I simply judged my drawings good or bad, and tried again the next time to do better. I sense that I won't be judging my product so much on this venture. Rather, it is a mode to observe, get lost in the observation, treasure that time, and move on to the next observation. This will establish a stronger and ongoing relaI tionship to nature. I walk my two white golden retrievers around "Starbucks Lake" -- I call it that because I can't find the name of this reservoir on any map, but there is a coffee shop half way around it -- and we enjoy seeing the birds and bunnies and other dogs. This walk can seem boring to me because there is no cardio, no uphill or downhill. Then I downloaded "Where the Crawdads Sing" and for the first time I stood and watched three double tufted Colorado Cormorants on two logs. I didn't try to make up for the flat terrain with speed. I just stood and watched. It was wonderful, and I tried sketching them when I got home. The book inspired me to stand and look for ten minutes, and to open this Christmas present from my love. I also purchased the Ornithology course online, and a huge, heavy textbook. I look forward to seeing how this next year unfolds with walking, looking, drawing, writing, and reading about birds. It is a good new step for me. I was missing a new adventure at 72 and settling for simple pleasures without a goal. This is great for me!
    • Li
      Participant
      Chirps: 33
      I love photography and painting, and I hope I can discover unexpected details around me by keeping a nature journal.I think nature journal is a good way to observe the interesting things around you and capture a moment in your life that surprises you, it makes me pay more attention to the things around me, discover the beauty of nature, and understand more about myself. I want to keep a nature journal with various boxes and categorize the daily journal. For example: the first box records the problem of observation, the second records the moment that touched you, the third records the knowledge (details) My new idea: do a quarterly summary of each season and pick out your favorite moment or thing in these 3 months.
    • Elana
      Participant
      Chirps: 2
      During the past 2 years I began photographing birds in Central Park in NYC, developing some skills and becoming part of the local birding community. For many years I taught illustration and painting to high school art majors, then opened a studio in midtown where I created nature-themed paintings and illustrated the poetry of Edgar Allen Poe (The Raven), Wallace Stevens (Thirteen Ways of Looking at a Blackbird), etc. The pandemic arrived, I closed the studio and began working from home. Most mornings I am in the park, just two blocks from my apartment, where there are ponds, waterfalls and a reservoir. It's been a struggle, however, to get back into painting. Through photography I've been able to spend more time observing the habits of wildlife. I want to get excited again about painting. Keeping a nature journal seems an excellent way to slow down and observe life, creating visual and written notes. I was inspired by all of the journalers, each one had something unique to offer. I'm ready to begin!
    • I think that what attracts me to try journaling is that it is a contemplative process as well as one that requires slowing down, concentrating and becoming much more observant. So much of my life was busy accomplishing a lot as quickly as possible. My job, teaching high school science was never done- planning, grading, physical preparation, and  mentoring was all consuming, including many nights, weekends and even much of vacation time. Additionally, I had children of my own.  I am absolutely in love as well as fascinated by the natural world.. Having an activity whereby I can fully immerse myself in it for whatever amount of time I want feels like heaven. As I read through the journal examples, I was drawn to aspects of several of the journalers. I liked Shayna's approach-draw, think, reflect, remember and look up what she wanted to learn more about, which fits my personality. My curiosity is endless and I love to follow a question or learn more about something that pops into my head and this is a process to do just that!! I think that sketching combined with writing is great for remembering. I went on a birding adventure abroad and I could see how journaling could have enriched my experience. To me it feels better than photography, it involves all the senses. I loved the aesthetics of Holly's journal.  Having sketches of the total landscape along with detailed sketches of specific plants, birds, insects and animals puts them in perspective. I felt that way about Liz's journal also.
    • Dayamiris
      Participant
      Chirps: 2
      1. That inspired me was the inspiration I have always drawn from nature, since also is my work environment; and ultimately is the perfect union between my art hobby (painting and drawing in general) and my academic background in sciences. I love the idea of fitting a month in just one page, I hope I can fit everything I get to draw in mine... also the idea of inserting squares to fit your notes would help me to a have a more organized layout. I would like to include my descriptions of sounds and smells; as well as, things I collet from my journaling trips (sustainably and mindfully collected) to include them in a "scrapbooky" style.
    • 1. I want to observe the world better and I hope that by spending time observing and drawing I’ll slow down and look with patience and attention at the world. 2. I like the ones that included words and drawing. As a poet that appeals to me. 3. No new ideas, but I do want to see how words and art can be blended into an expression of my attention.
    • Vicky
      Participant
      Chirps: 2
      I like the free style presentation that some had. I liked the personalization. Journaling to enjoy not to instruct
    • Sarah
      Participant
      Chirps: 1
      1) I am a linocut printmaker who often depicts birds, however, you can't complete a lino out in the field as it takes a lot of time, elbow grease, and sharp tools! Watercolor is a medium that is much more immediate and portable, so I wanted to learn how to use this medium. 2) I appreciate the last sketcher's goals of trying to do one drawing a day or a month of drawings. I also appreciated how many sketchers were working out the logic of what they were observing on paper, rather than just appreciation--they seemed to be learning from what they were observing. 3) I've also been looking for a way to combine words and images together in my art. I'm hoping that along with my observations and notes, I can include word-play and poetry to go along with the sketches.
    • Nicole
      Participant
      Chirps: 1
      1. I took both of Liz’s recent workshops on the Cedar Waxwing painting and drawing essentials.  I loved both and want to learn more about nature sketching and improve my painting and drawing skills. 2. I can’t pick just one style I like!  I love the colors in Shayna, Jewel, William, and Holly’s journals.  Yet I also love the simplicity of D.J. & Margaret’s journals.  I liked Shayna’s details including looking up both the common and scientific names of her subjects.  I love how Margaret and William keep multiple quick sketches of the same subject to learn more about their subjects.  I think Margaret had a dozen sketches of hummingbirds in a 2 hour time-frame and each one seemed to teach her something.  D.J. has used his as official documentation.  Shayna’s is a “personal field guide” and Jewel, William, and Holly seem to be about memories.  I’d like to incorporate all methods into my journal. 3. I think I might try doing multiple pictures of the same subject in using different mediums - watercolor, colored pencils, or pencils sketches and see which I like the most.