Lange Art Retreats

Shauna Lee Lange, Field Sketching Kit (2021)

Affordable and fun private and group lessons are also available in person and via the web.

Want to live a more creatively natural art life? You can participate in a consortium of nature-inspired virtual and in-person illustrating and drawing art & photography events. If you are looking for activities for field sketching, nature journaling, and visual recording, here’s how to get plugged in with Lange Art Retreats Our Instagram is @langeartretreats
Shauna Lee Lange, Connecticut Flowering Shrubbery (2019), colored pencil on brown paper journal, 7″ x 5″


June 23 – 27, 2021 John Muir Laws Wild Wonder Nature Journaling Online Conference

July 17 & 18; 24 & 25, 2021 Guild of Natural Science Illustrators Virtual Annual Conference

July 21 – 24, 2021 Association of Medical Illustrators Annual Conference

July 2021 World Watercolor Month

October 2021 Inktober Month 31 Days 31 Drawings

October 2021 The Big Draw Festival

January 21 – 29, 2022 Master Drawings New York

Shauna Lee Lange, Whales (2019), watercolor on paper, 12″ x 9″

Urban Sketchers A

More to Come

Urban Sketchers B

More to come

Classicists – Institute of Classical Architecture & Art (ICAA)

Classicists is the working name for the Insitute of Classical Art & Architecture. In addition to chapter groups centered on the classicist style of drawing and design, the group has a fantastic Bunny Mellon Curriculum for garden arts. Regions host a weekly social medial sharing of a designated place of interest so illustrators can compare styles while keeping their drawing skills current.

Sketchbook Skool

Sketchbook Skool offers a variety of affordable classes & workshops for learning how to draw & sketch from international artists who each specialize in a particular style or form of drawing. Every Thursday at 12EST, Founder Danny Gregory hold a free online Draw With Me Event. A former co-founder, Koosje Koene offers a free Draw Tip Tuesday Video Series. Sketchbook Skool has an interesting membership-based series of art offerings, especially designed for the beginning to mid-range artist who may be looking for their own art community.

John Muir Laws/Charlotte Mason Groups

John Muir Laws is a definitive expert in nature journaling. He hosts events, classes, resources and networks for nature education and art. Charlotte Mason Groups are educators and families who elect observation of the natural world as their schoolroom. The two entities are often interchangeable.


Inktober began as a daily drawing exercise for the month of October. It has expanded into a second spin-off, Inktober 52 which provides drawing prompts for each week of the year.

Dr. Sketchy’s anti-art school

Dr. Sketchy’s Anti-Art school is the world’s premier alternative drawing movement. Artists draw glamorous underground performers in an atmosphere of boozy conviviality. Found in 2005 in a dive bar in Brooklyn, Dr. Sketchy’s has now spread to over 100 cities around the world. Dr. Sketchy’s is a great source for drawing from live models (now on Zoom) in outrageous costumes (often bordering on burlesque).

Plein Air Groups

More to come

Shauna Lee Lange, Coneflower (2020), ink on paper with fountain pen, 11″ x 14″

Bespoke sketching events and parties for individuals, family and friends

In addition to the scheduled events, Lange Art Retreats offers a range of bespoke events and parties. Whether you’re looking for something different to do with a group of friends or you want an original birthday party, we can help you connect with each other as well as with nature. Whatever your age, our parties are colourful, creative, sometimes muddy and always fun. Or maybe you’d prefer a quieter one-on-one sketching class at a location of your choice, especially if travel and mobility are an issue. Get in touch and we can see what’s possible.

Tips to Great Field Sketching

When you find your subject, try to take at least 10 or 15 minutes to study it before you even set pencil to paper. This will allow the subject at hand to displace any inaccurate pictures you might carry in your brain.

• When drawing with a student, talk together about what you see and how you plan to draw it. What shapes, lines and textures do you see? What part will you draw first? How big will you draw it?

• As you draw, take breaks to stretch, step back, and just observe for a while. I like to take this time to consider a field map or a drawing of your study area. This can help you document the location of a study site relative to the surrounding area, as well as provide location information about important features within your study site.

• If you’re frustrated with a drawing, stop for a while and observe it. Compare it to the subject. Look for parts that you want to keep and parts that you want to change. Make a plan for how you can change them to make your sketch more true to life. Before you move on to another subject or drawing, look again — what other details can you add?

• It’s OK to start over again! Each time you draw something, you not only get better at drawing it, you understand it better.

Notes are an essential part of a field journal. They express things about your experience that you can’t include in a drawing, or that you don’t have time or skills to capture completely. At the very minimum, label each journal page with your name or initials (the observer), the date, and the subject or subjects. Beyond that, think of field journal notes in three categories: observations, inferences, and questions. Put another way: what did you see/hear/feel/smell? What do you infer about your subject? What do you wonder about your subject? (Credit Kathy Hocker/Juneau Empire)

Other Drawing Education

American Museum of Natural History, DC; Brooklyn Botanic Garden, NY; Chicago Botanic Garden, IL; Cornell University, NY; Denver Botanical Gardens, CO; Fioli Distance Learning, CA; GNSI’s List of Courses; Illustraciencia, Spain; Longwood Gardens, PA; Lewis Ginter Botanical Garden, VA; List of Museums with Free Online Art Programs; Massachusetts Horticultural Society, MA; Minnesota School of Botanical Art, MN; Missouri Botanic Garden, MO; New York Botanical Garden, NY; Phipps Conservatory, PA; Rhode Island School of Design, RI; Sciart Scientific Illustration Courses; Stanford Art & Science, CA: List of Free Natural Science Courses; United States Botanic Garden, DC; University of Newcastle, Australia; Yale Peabody Museum of Natural History, CT;

Nature & Science Artists & Illustrators WE Love

Alice Loves Drawing Instagram; @andreaszalay_; British Museum Prints & Drawings; Cathy Johnson; Getty Museum Drawings; Lee Angold Videos; Library of Congress Collection of Drawings; National Gallery of Art American Drawings; National Museum of American Illustration; Tansy Hargan Instagram; The Drawing Center; The Met Drawings & Prints;

Shauna Lee Lange, Green Beetle (2019), watercolor & ink on paper, 9″ x 12″

Recommended Books on Nature Drawing, Art Journaling, Field Sketching, Urban Sketch

Noah Scanlon’s 365: A Daily Creative Journal; Dawn DeVries Sokol’s 1,000 Artist Journal Pages and Doodle Diary: Art Journaling for Girls; Danny Gregory’s An Illustrated Life; Jenny Doh’s Art Saves; Pam Carriker’s Art at the Speed of Life; Sharon Soreff’s Art Jounals & Creative Healing; Jennifer Greenleaf’s Art Journal Prompts & Points; Lynn Perrella’s Artist Journals & Sketchbooks; Cathy Johnson’s Artist Journals Workshops and Sierra Club Guide to Sketching in Nature; Lucia Capacchione’s Creative Journal Art of Finding Yourself; LK Ludwig’s Collaborative Art Journals and Creative Wildfire: Intro to Art Journaling and True Vision; Gwenn Diehn’s Decorated Journal; Traci Bautista’s Doodles Unleashed; Jennifer New’s Drawing from Life: The Journal as Art; Melanie Testa’s Dreaming from the Journal Page: Transforming the Sketchbook to Art; D Price’s How to Make a Journal of Your Life; Violette’s Journal Bliss; Creative Prompts to Unleash Your Inner Ecentric; Eric Scott’s Journal Fodder 365: Daily Doses of Inspiration for the Art Addict and Journal Junkies Workshop;

Woods & Dinino’s Journal Resolution and Visual Chronicles; Diana Trout’s Journal Spilling; Traci Bunker’s Art Journal Workshop; Quinn McDonald’s Raw Art Journaling; Kelly Rae Roberts Taking Flight: Inspiration & Techniques; Misty Mawn’s Unfurling: Mixed Media Workshop; Keri Smith’s Wreck This Journal Series; Cicely Barker’s Flower Fairies of the Winter; Claire Walker Leslie’s A Naturalist’s Sketchbook and The Curious Nature Guide and Keeping a Nature Journal and Nature Connection and Art of Field Sketching; Julia Rothman’s Nature Anatomy: The Curious Parts & Pieces of the Natural World; Hannah Hinchman’s A Life in Hand; Creating the Illuminated Journal and Little Things in a Big Country and A Trail Through the Leaves; Erin O’Toole’s Create Your Own Artist Journal; Jack Kerouac’s Book of Sketches (Poems);

Edith Holden’s Nature Notes of the Country Diary of an Edwardian Lady; Audubon’s The Practical Naturalist; Rachel Carlson’s The Sense of Wonder and The Edge of the Sea; Richard Louv’s The Nature Principle and The Last Child in the Woods; Robert Finch’s Nature Writing, The Tradition in English; National Geographic Society’s The Curious Naturalist; Claudia Nice; How to Keep A Sketchbook Journal; Virginia Wright-Frierson’s A Desert Scrapbook and An Island Scrapbook; John Muir Laws The Laws Guide to Nature Drawing & Journaling; Ernst Haeckel’s Art Forms in Nature and Art Forms in the Ocean; Tristan Gooley’s The Lost Art of Reading Nature’s Signs; Kathy Willis Botanicum: Richard Adams A Nature Diary: Isle of Man; Rene Laubach Nature Walks in Connecticut; Janet Marsh’s Nature Diary; E. O. Wilson’s Biophilia; Mary Jo Koch’s Seed, Leaf, Flower, Fruit; Helen MacDond’s H is for Hawk; Appalachian Mountain Club’s Watercolor Painting on the Trail

Alexandria Johnson’s Leaving A Trace; Richard Schilling’s Watercolor Journeys; Art of Travel With a Sketchbook; Lucy Watson’s The Artist’s Sketchbook; Charles Reid’s Watercolor Secrets; Alan Moore’s Do Design; Guillermo Del Toro Cabinet of Curiosities; Anne Lamott’s Bird by Bird; Hall Kass Amplified Art Journal; Gordon Grice; Cabinet of Curiosities; Lynda Barry’s What It Is; Peter Kurt Woerner’s Odyssey: 50 Years of Travel Drawing; R Crum The Sweeter Side of R Crumb; Peter Wohlleben’s The Hidden Life of Trees; Gavin Pretor-Pinney’s A Cloud A Day; David Mitchell’s Cloud Atlas; Rachel Ignotofsky’s The Wonderous Workings of Planet Earth; Rosie Sanders Flowers; Jessica Shepherd’s Leafscape; Nathaniel Wheelwright’s The Naturalist’s Notebook; Anna Comstock’s Handbook of Nature Study;

More to add later


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