During our walks we have found a few items we've kept, mainly as sentimental reminders of a particularly memorable or exciting experience on that day's outing.
We have a couple swan feathers from The Mill Pond in Richmond Hill, a beautiful smooth white quartz stone from the shore line near us, and the other feather here is a Flicker's feather that I found outside my old work on Milner in Scarborough.
I set up these items on an old wooden cereal crate that my Grandparents gave me 20+ years ago, from Port Colborne, Ontario, where they lived and where I visited them when I was a kid and teen. I just am using an ordinary table lamp to light the objects and create cast shadows that are interesting to draw. It is just being done in B, 2B and 6B pencil.
It is enjoyable to do an hour or so every Saturday and or Sunday, after being out on hikes during the early part of the day. It'll take some time to complete it.
Part of the inspiration to work with natural objects such as feathers was seeing Canadian artistTom Forrestall's work one day a couple weeks back after my boyfriend and I dropped off his latest completed painting at his gallery on the same street. We dropped in to a couple other galleries, gabbed with people he knows, and that is where I discovered the gorgeous little feather and spoon paintings, as well as the scare crow and raven painting of Tom's. He is an artist who I had forgotten from college when looking at Canadian painters during art history.
Drawing from life is challenging, especially when one's eyes have changed and become older, but it is a real enjoyable exercise on a weekend afternoon. It keeps one's observation skills well honed as well.