Friday, February 1, 2013

Keeping a Nature Journal with Elizabeth Ellison

January 7, 2013
“Keeping a Nature Journal with Elizabeth Ellison”

A journal is a wonderful place to keep a record of things in the natural world which bring meaning into our lives. It can be a record of birds seen on any particular day, wildflowers observed, wild animals seen, etc., or it can be a more elaborate companion in which notes on natural observation may be made either in prose or in poetry. If you have the ability to enhance your journal with drawings and/or watercolor the pleasure in returning to read your nature notes will be that much greater and the act of drawing and painting itself teaches one to be a closer observer of the natural world. It teaches you to SEE.
In my nature journaling workshops I endeavor to teach people to observe and to record both with words and watercolor what they encounter in the natural world--what they would like to keep a record of--perhaps for future reference (for instance, to compare what they observe on a particular day each year) and as a means of identification and a way of remembering what they have identified. The journal can also be a place to keep a record of your gardening endeavors.  
I do not teach writing but only the act of combining it with your drawing/painting enhancements which I do teach. In the workshop we will work a bit with the use and mixing of color, the importance of paying attention to detail in our observations and then some of the many techniques for recording an impression of what we are actually seeing.

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