Forum Role: Participant
Active Since: May 9, 2017
Topics Started: 0
Replies Created: 16

Forum Replies Created

Viewing 16 posts - 1 through 16 (of 16 total)
  • Jane
    Participant
    jirwinromo
    I've been a casual birdwatcher for years. This course and the Nature Journaling course have heightened my interest in paying attention to the variety and seasonality of the birds in our area. I'd like to get better at identifying birds by their calls, because sometimes I am too rushed to take time to find it or don't have binoculars with me but am curious if it's a bird call I don't recognize. Will finish that course, which I'd started some time ago.
  • Jane
    Participant
    jirwinromo
    I had to laugh at your description but I like the result!
  • Jane
    Participant
    jirwinromo
    Thanks to my fellow students for your suggestions on nature writers that you enjoy. I had not heard of Mary Oliver before - I don’t read a lot of poetry, but will look for her work. I’ve enjoyed Peter Matthieson, Bill Bryson, Edward Abbey’s Desert Solitaire, and just finished Terry Tempest Williams’s The Hour of Land. I’d like to read more of her work. I have started journals many times before, but never with the intention of also connecting it to observing nature and actually illustrating it. My journals have tended to be about what I “do” not what I “feel” and I hope I can bring in more of the latter. One of the positives for me of having this coronavirus lockdown has been a chance to more intently observe the natural world around me. Lots of walks, hardly any driving, and really noticing the changing from late winter to early/mid spring. Also, to contemplate what changes seem to be happening all around us due to the “built world” and climate change. In the Chicago area, we’ve just experienced our wettest May on record and Lake Michigan and surrounding waterways are at all time highs. How will this affect our area going forward - both from a human standpoint and for our natural world? Will this time of “stay at home” have any longer term impact - maybe not on our environment, but perhaps on our attitudes towards it, so we appreciate and will fight harder to protect it? All things to continue to observe.
  • Jane
    Participant
    jirwinromo
    I held off on this exercise, partly because I didn’t want to mess up and partly because I didn’t want the course to end. I am feeling fairly comfortable with drawing, but need a lot of practice with painting. I am having trouble getting the 3D effects with watercolors. Also, I find handling the brush and paint to do finer lines is very tough for me. Need practice on getting a good background in as well. Practice, practice, practice! But this has been lots of fun and I hope to continue.1E63D33E-1E7A-42AA-A171-58CC464361FFEAD7E1B6-C614-4767-A19E-2090214C60C3
  • Jane
    Participant
    jirwinromo
    Advantage of a rainy day - I decided to attempt to use the metallic/florescent watercolors that I received when I first ordered to see what I could do. Others have mentioned they also got this pallet by mistake - it doesn’t contain a black or any flat color. Our only local hummingbird is the ruby throated, and it has iridescent colors, so that was my pick. This was from a photo in Stokes Field Guide - I found I could add some darkness with my pencil which I wouldn’t have tried if I’d had the regular color palette. So a good experiment.403EC678-CF45-4800-BDF6-BF1EAAAAC3FF
  • Jane
    Participant
    jirwinromo
    It’s been pouring rain the last couple of days so no outdoor fun. I went back to one of my earlier journal entries to fill in a picture of the Caspian Tern - we see a lot of them flying up and down the Lake Michigan shore, and I’d seen several that day. My journal is more wordy, lots of text, little room for pictures, but filled this in trying to use some of the new water color techniques I have been learning. I’ve got to work on the wash technique. I needed to keep a lot of white for the tern. Adding the blue sky after the fact was tricky and it’s uneven. I also used a reference pic from Stokes Field Guide. Definitely need to practice watching the real thing!8FB19B43-AD44-42D0-B62A-ED14E34B11F0
  • Jane
    Participant
    jirwinromo
    Nancy, I ordered my supplies on line and I got the same set the first time around. Decided to keep it for poster painting or kids projects or something, but I was able to go to another site and specifically order the standard color set. I think there’s a lot of people ordering water colors - the standard colors are harder to find! Lucky for me, I’m in Chicago and able to get another delivery. Anyone who’s still purchasing supplies, make sure you get the black box, not the one with the Asian fish on the cover!
  • Jane
    Participant
    jirwinromo
    I took a water color class decades ago and haven't done anything in years. I have forgotten everything, but love color and experimenting. I think I've got to control my water better because I have lots of blobs. Looking forward to learning more techniques! Love the colors in the Wasatch Mountain picture - the trees and trying to make anything resemble the picture was hard!IMG_0951
  • Jane
    Participant
    jirwinromo
    I think the negative space and seeing the shapes rather than trying to capture the whole form at once has been most helpful. And being willing to erase and start again to get it right!IMG_0940
  • Jane
    Participant
    jirwinromo
    This was somewhat fun - I felt like I was drawing little islands rather than the markings on the sparrow's breast. I had trouble with proportion, starting with the branch first and ending with the head at the edge of the page. A good exercise though!IMG_0937
  • Jane
    Participant
    jirwinromo
    On the last few exercises, I am finding I need to keep my images smaller, quicker and not to spend too much time on any detail. The red fox with kit was hard-I think mammals seem to have more moving parts than birds. Yet the duck preening had a lot of action. Since it's a cold day outside and I had limited time, I turned on the Cornell Lab bird cam to do a little more practice on a live scene. That was fun - still hard but in the comfort of my home! D492FEE0-3B7D-4E58-B443-28BBF9CFF66B_1_105_c
  • Jane
    Participant
    jirwinromo
    That was fun! I'll have to see if the grandkids want to try it some time. My problem on the Newt and Springbok was getting back to the starting place. The proportions weren't too bad. Not sharing though!
  • Jane
    Participant
    jirwinromo
    I decided to compare these two plants in my back yard. It’s an unmanicured bluff overlooking Lake Michigan. Some of the vegetation was intentionally planted by the prior owner, but most is native happenstance. I think these two plants are natural inhabitants of the land. I have no idea what either one is, but am now curious to find out. The comparison study caused me to think about qualities that I might not have noticed if I were just looking at one plant by itself. 32D8EA73-E38C-43A6-B491-B1CD54FAF1EE
  • Jane
    Participant
    jirwinromo
    I found this hard - it takes patience to observe the nuances of the light. Something I am trying to develop. image
  • Jane
    Participant
    jirwinromo
    2CB536B8-33CF-4DD4-915C-9A3AE22ADCC5_1_105_cIt's a challenge for me to take the time to observe, sketch, come back and observe again. By drawing, I took more time to see the picture, beyond the beautiful colors. Still waiting for my own watercolors/sketch pad to be delivered, so just pencil for now.
    in reply to: Jump Right in! #695592
  • Jane
    Participant
    jirwinromo
    I saw this course on the website and gifted it to my sister (free!) then decided to buy one for myself. I never had art in school - all music and books for me! But I took a water color class at a community center decades ago, before marriage and kids, and now have some time to try it again. My mother instilled in my family a love of nature and the outdoors. She passed away last year at about this time. Thinking of her and now having to slow down with Covid-19 restrictions have inspired me to give this a try. Without being able to travel, I think it’s time to appreciate the environment I have the privilege of living in, the northern suburbs of Chicago close to Lake Michigan. The elements of the journal examples I think I could re-create are the notes and info on place, time, weather, etc. Some of the talented artwork will be daunting! I am still waiting for my art supplies to be delivered - purchased online, I guess they aren’t an essential service. It will be fun to get those paints out!
Viewing 16 posts - 1 through 16 (of 16 total)