Category Archives: life drawing

Heavy weather? Not too bad for birds.

There’s this magic suet recipe that’s easy to make and highly effective for attracting birds. Once you start putting Zick Dough out there, the mobbing never stops until the last crumb is picked by the smallest wren. Just place a feeder by … Continue reading

Posted in Animals, bird art, bird-drawing technique, birding, birds, Drawing, life drawing, Nature, Oklahoma Weather, Sketching, Urban Nature, Wildlife | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , | 11 Comments

The Better Part of a Year

It’s been a strange year, and most of us are glad to scrape the last of it off our shoes. But who doesn’t love a holiday year-end letter? It’s one last chance to send a few humble-brags and over-shares. Here are a few of mine. … Continue reading

Posted in Adventure!, Animals, Art, Art Studio, Artists, bird art, bird-drawing technique, birds, Charcoal, digiscoping, Diversions, Drawing, Environment, field sketching, life drawing, natural history, Nature, oil painting, Oklahoma, painting, Panama, Pastel, plein air, tropics, Wildlife | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 6 Comments

Bird Work, Bird Art, Bird Play

Writing goes and goes. I’m still in Panama, working on a chapter about raptors. Which sounds straightforward until I figured out that raptors, for me, are not so much about their biology as their cultural and personal meaning. What, after all, could be more allegorical than a eagle? Or … Continue reading

Posted in Animals, bird art, birds, Culture, Diversions, field sketching, life drawing, natural history, Watercolor, Wildlife, Writing | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 5 Comments

What do Toucans Really Think?

Morning ritual in Panama: take coffee cup to the chair at the back door landing, open the sketchbook, raise the binoculars. The forest patch behind the house looks like a life-sized diorama of a jungle scene. A Nance tree blooms right outside … Continue reading

Posted in Adventure!, Animals, Art, birding, Diversions, Drawing, Environment, field sketching, life drawing, natural history, Nature, Panama, rainforest, random speculation, tropics, Wildlife | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , | 3 Comments

Earth Day with the Motmot

Greetings from Gamboa, Panama. Ant Man and I rented a house for six weeks on a hill above the Panama Canal, with a view of cecropia and palms and fruiting miconia trees attracting every known tropical and neotropical bird that’s … Continue reading

Posted in Adventure!, Animals, architecture, Art, bird art, birding, birds, Boats, Drawing, Environment, field sketching, life drawing, natural history, Nature, Panama, plein air, rainforest, Scope sketching, travel, tropics, Watercolor, Wildlife | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | 9 Comments

Friday Figures: A Few Small Gestures

Did these drawings using only a single strong light on a stand. Room lights shut off, blinds closed, drawing in semi-darkness. You can really see the figure that way. A single light source, simplicity itself. Every pose starkly beautiful. I’m … Continue reading

Posted in Art, Art Studio, figure drawing, life drawing | Tagged , , , , , | 3 Comments

Speed Drawing with a Model

I recently hired a model for a gesture-drawing session. It was the first time I’d ever done such a thing, and it made me feel like a grown-up artist: in control, entitled to set the lighting, the poses, even the music. Artists are notoriously childlike. Anyone who … Continue reading

Posted in Art, Art Studio, Artists, figure drawing, life drawing, models | Tagged , , , , , , , | 2 Comments