The compulsion to create

How does your compulsion to create show itself? What is there inside you that you can't not let out? 

This week I hosted a workshop with Vanessa Birley for creatives who want to draw, paint and photograph the natural world around them. We spent a glorious day, at the tail end of this glorious summer, by the beach. We walked, we kicked off our shoes, we sat still, we remembered the reverence we have for the earth. We started to switch off our chattering, rational brains, and gave our intuitive, creative subconscious the chance to be heard. 

switching off for nature journaling

Vanessa, an artist for 20 years, gave everyone the confidence to draw from life, within the first 15 minutes. Progress was fast, paint was added, tea was drunk, nature was journalled.

nature journaling at the beach
watercolour nature journaling

In the afternoon I took the group out onto the beach with their DSLRs and I am confident everyone left knowing 2 things: how to use their apertures to change the depth of field (to get the blurred background photos), and how to use their shutter speed to freeze or blur the action. My aim is that my students not only understand what they learn on my workshops, but can also remember it and replicate it when they get home.

Do you fancy nature journalling and photography in the same day? Vanessa and I run these workshops regularly. The next date is in November, the venue is to be confirmed. If you join my weekly photography lesson email (the lessons are called A Year With My Camera), you'll be first to hear when the details are final. Sign up here:

The main header image for this post is a photograph of one of Patsy Smiles' sketches.