To join me on a virtual sketching trip, download a travel sketch-journal here.
I add tutorials to them so you can learn the techniques and details you see in the sketchbooks.

My former workshop students asked me to upload my workshop workbooks to make them available to everyone. So you can also download a workbook and give yourself a workshop! Enjoy!

Thursday, July 5, 2007

Journaling Workshop Lesson Plan

I blogged yesterday that I would try to get this up today -- the lesson plan for my upcoming workshop-in-progress. {I've been trying to work as I listen to the marvelous Beverly Sills retrospective. She was a remarkable woman with a fantastic voice!} And, at least on the west coast, it is still July 5.

I'd appreciate any comments, advice, criticism or words of wisdom you have to offer. It would actually be nice to hear from you in the comment box at the bottom of this entry, so others can see what has been commented on and add grist to the mill.

I love help on things like this. I always pass around evaluation sheets at the end of my workshops, then work very hard to improve to meet the needs of my students.

Even better, though, is to work out the kinks BEFORE giving the class. So lend a hand if you can. Pro or con.


Nature and Garden Journaling, with Sketches and Words

First Session is drawing, Second Session is writing, Third Session is for showing results of workshop training and improving writing/sketching skills.

All journal entries will be made with intent to share with the class – no private observations!

This workshop can also be presented in four sessions, with the addition of a watercolor pencil techniques session for learning how to color the artwork.

DAY ONE: Creative Drawing Session

VISUALS: my journals or samples from them
Right-brain workshop stuff
Examples of things to glue into journals

Introduce self, discuss my journal keeping, hand out workbooks

Show some of the journals I’ve kept

Go around room and elicit what people want to do with their journals. Record this on a flip chart for all to see and get inspiration from.

Refer to workbook, list of types of journals

Discuss styles and types of journals

Have pile of books on journaling on display, discuss & recommend good ones

Right-brain Exercises: contour, modified contour, leaf, negative spaces

Drawing Exercise: students make sketch of a natural article around which to journal on the second day – leave area around sketch empty for use in the second session.

Students decide on journal type they will use for this class
  • Garden
  • Nature
  • General
Discuss designing a journal: gutter margins, planning ahead, illustrations first, adding flat things: movie tickets, leaves, pressed flowers, etc.

Assignment 1: research the natural article sketched during class and/or make notes (not on page around sketch) to utilize in applying the creative writing information gained in the next session

Assignment 2: make a 1 (or more) page entry as a baseline example in order to gauge later improvement. Add illustration if desired.


DAY TWO: Creative Writing Session

Examples of good and mundane writing in workbook
Discuss examples of using a thesaurus to replace mundane words

Creative writing exercise: take a single sentence (from workbook) and expand it to an interesting paragraph, 100-150 wds

Creative poetry exercise: 4-liner rhyming, 4-liner freeform, haiku

Discuss examples of nature journaling entries, garden journaling entries and general journaling entries

Exercise: journal around the illustration done in previous workshop session.

Assignment for final session: Create at one or two entries with illustrations, one snippet of poetry, at least one paste/tape-in article, using information on designing a page and leaving a gutter.

(Select one of the categories below)
  • GARDEN ENTRY SUGGESTION: make an observation about a plant in the garden, a sketch of the plant, a haiku, a pressed leaf, flower, seed, seed packet, or cut-out photo from magazine, etc. with notes and arrows.
  • NATURE ENTRY SUGGESTION: make an observation about a found natural object, a sketch of it, a haiku of it, a pressed leaf or flower or another natural object found nearby, with notes and arrows
  • GENERAL ENTRY SUGGESTION: make an observation about anything you’d like, a sketch to illustrate it, a poem about it, a related flat article (or just something interesting) glued or taped onto the page – if it’s unrelated, label and annotate it.


Students bring their journals with assignments done

Each participant presents his/her journal to class

Class critique and admiration of journals, with suggestions and praise

Share ideas for future journal entries and approaches

Respond to student requests for further sketching or writing exercises.

If there is time, students sketch and journal the meeting during class

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