Sketching in the Woods

I am fortunate for these stay-at-home days to have a 25-acre nature preserve next to where I live. And doubly blessed that it’s lightly used, thus social distancing is a seldom necessity. It’s meandering, leaf-covered trails amid the forest of hardwoods make for a contemplative and relaxing break from the human drama that’s all around us.

I’ve been sketching on and off most of my life, but admittedly seldom and certainly not enough to build up my sketching muscles. Architecture school, way back in what seems almost like a previous life, nurtured my love of the form, but not much steady effort since then. Virtually meeting Tina Koyama got me hooked into the world of Urban Sketching and rekindled my fondness for nature and architectural sketching (more bits of shared sketching found here). I took the selfie in Chicago a few years back when I finally met Tina face-to-face for some street-based sketching.

Today was my second outing this week into the woods with my improvised sketching stool and kit. No doubt the kit will evolve but starting out it contains some of Faber-Castell PITT artist pens, four Blackwing pencils, sharpener, and two Tombow stick erasers. Sketchbook is a Field Notes Signature, rigged with a piece of chipboard scored perpendicularly to the Signature binding then affixed with small binder clips. Result is a sketching “board” of sorts where I don’t have to struggle with the binding or bending of pages. Photos below show how it worked out today.

The Subject
The Setup
The Kit w/Coleman Folding Stool
The Sketch