Creating Art from Nature: Beginner and Intermediate with Kathie Miranda
Develop the skills to accurately portray natural objects such as plants, mushrooms, insects, feathers, bones, shells, driftwood, etc. Work from your own collection of objects or photos in graphite, colored pencil, ink.
- In this project-based class, you may work on one large composition over the duration, or create smaller, new projects each week. Please bring your choice of natural objects and/or digital or print images. For the first class, please select several objects to arrange in a simple composition including flowers, plants, mushrooms, insects, feathers, bones, shells, driftwood, etc.
- Instructor will demonstrate and discuss traditional methods of creating natural science art: begin a composition in graphite pencil on tracing paper and transfer the outline to drawing or watercolor paper to complete the work in a chosen medium.
- You may work in graphite or color.
- Please bring basic drawing supplies as well as basic supplies for your color medium of choice and experience.
- If you are new to working in color, colored pencil is a good starting point. Professional artist quality pencils are highly recommended. Buy the largest set of Prismacolor pencils you can afford; or visit Jerry’s Artarama, Norwalk, CT to select colors you like from open stock. Buy 2 different yellows, 2 reds, and 2 blues plus a range of light, mid-tone and dark colors.
- Convenient to have:
- Tracing paper
- Drawing pad or sketchbook for working out compositions
- Draftsman Dividers for measuring: 5-1/2” or 6”; [Alvin #560; Staedtler Masterbow] looks like a compass but with free moving arms that end in 2 needle points
- Shadow Box to control lighting on the objects
- Small box, such as a shoebox, to prop up the objects closer to eye level
- Pocket size color wheel (if working in color)
- Camera to photograph set up to re-position at home
watercolor or other dry or water-based medium. Class demonstrations include tips for rendering special challenges such as surface pattern, texture and the often hard-to-define colors found in nature. Students work in collaboration with the instructor to see personal projects come to life.
Kathie Miranda is a contemporary multi-media artist and educator. A graduate of Pace University, with further studies at Lyme Academy College of Fine Arts and Paier College of Art, she coordinated the Art program at the New York Botanical Garden and is past-president of the New York chapter of the Guild of Natural Science Illustrators. She exhibits her work regularly with the Spring Bull Gallery (SBG), Newport, RI; the American Society of Botanical Artists (ASBA); the Colored Pencil Society of America; and the Connecticut Watercolor Society. Recent exhibits include the Leigh Yawkey Woodson Art Museum, Wausau, WI and the Stephen and Peter Sachs Museum, St. Louis, MO. Recent awards include the Anne Marie Carney Award (ASBA) and Best in Show, Magic of Colored Pencil, (SBG)
Miranda says: "I was raised in a small town in Connecticut surrounded by dense woodlands, ponds, streams, and rolling farm fields. Family entertainment included long walks through the woods after Sunday lunch. My parents shared their encyclopedia knowledge of nature’s bounty by identifying the native plants, mushrooms and wildlife found right in our own back yard. I didn’t appreciate then how much this rich environment and my love of the natural world would influence my future art career choices!"
She shares her enthusiasm for the natural world with her students in a positive, collaborative environment.