Saturday, April 26, 2014

bird watching, week four

Fake Journal 2014 april 24
white-crowned sparrow, 4.24.2014

To A Sparrow

Among the clouds your couriers
post to embassies
beyond our fondest dreams
and heaven, the ancient court of saints
whispers to us
among the hemlocks
insistently of you.
William Carlos Williams

Fake Journal alder trunk
speckled alder, 4.20.2014

This is my favorite tree outside my window from the top floor of my art studio.
Base of trunk grew horizontally before growing upward.

Fake Journal steller's jay
steller's jay, 4.25.2014

The Jay
No Brigadier throughout the Year
So civic as the Jay-
A Neighbor and a Warrior too
With shrill felicity
Pursuing Winds that censure us
A February Day,
Emily Dickinson (excerpt)

Fake Journal april 21 2014
bird watching, april 21, 2014

4.21.2014, Sunny

Today I read that Thoreau kept detailed notes between 1851 - 1858 of the flowering times of about 500 species of plants!

Between 8:48 a.m. and 9:15 a.m., the grey tree squirrel and the Steller's Jay were competing for who gets the ground area and the feeder. As soon as the Steller's Jay arrived, the grey tree squirrel chased it away. Even when I couldn't see the squirrel, it would come dashing out from some where to claim the area.

Fake Journal april 23 2014
4.23.2014, bird watching

Yesterday afternoon, as I was going upstairs, I looked out the window and saw a white-crowned sparrow sitting on the fence preening itself. I had not seen this one at the feeder or anywhere in the backyard. It was a magical litle bird, sitting there on the fence, soaking up the sun.

Saturday, April 19, 2014

Japanese Stewartia, bunny rabbits and bird watching

april 17, japanese stewartia
notes on Japanese Stewartia

Last weekend I rode my bicycle over to our local plant nursery and spoke with their tree expert. I was impressed with how he could decipher which tree I was talking about based on my description of leaves, flowers, and the present seasonal state of the tree. We then spent several minutes walking around the large complex looking for that exact tree.

bird and tree watching
bird watching notes and tree notes

 I returned home to do further research on the internet and learned that this tree gives a fruit. The brown capsules that remain on the tree are a remnant of that fruit. Now I realize that last autumn the grey tree squirrel was eating the fruit and not the capsules as I previously thought.

male spotted towhee
male spotted towhee

Male spotted towhees have blacker heads and their "spots" are more visible than the female who has a grey-black head and less defined spots.

april 14, bunny rabbit
rabbit eating kale

handwritten notes
handwritten notes

April 13, 2014
Sunny, 9:22

I've noticed that if I hear a bird singing at the feeder, it's Black-capped Chickadee most likely. It tends to voice its arrival, just before or upon, its landing.

And another thing that I have noticed is how birds co-mingle in proximity on the ground more often then I had previously noted. At the feeder, not so often. Although today, a fox sparrow and a black-capped chickadee were at the feeder at the same time.

April 14, 2014 
Brilliant sunrise with the sun now showing through a thin layer of clouds

There is a pollinated smell to the air. The cherry tree blossoms have all but bloomed and fallen with some of the other similar trees shortly fallowing their example.

The nettle is between one to 1.5 feet tall now. Surrounding bushes are starting to bloom.

Time slows and I feel this gradual lift of my spirit.

joining international fake journal

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

liberate your art 2014

postcards and art envelope by Juana & ready to send to Kat

I joined this postcard mail swap for the second time this year. Above are the set that I sent out this year along with the art envelope that I made to enclose them.

I thank Kat over at kateyestudio for putting together this wonderful mail art exchange.  It's a big job indeed as she receives all our postcards and mails them out in bunches. How many? 1254 pieces of art with 209 participating artists from 10 countries. Wow!

Below is what I received this year.

Cheri's at

Lynn at


Mel at

Rinda at

Kat at

Bookmark Kat's blog or join her newsletter to get word of next years postcard swap. Below are links to the other artists and photographers who participated in this year's swap.

Saturday, April 12, 2014

bird watching second week

fake journal april 06 2014
dark-eyed Junco sketch and notes on Spotted Towhee

April 6, 2014, overcast with wet ground
visits from Dark-eyed Junco, Spotted Towhee, Pacific Wren, and Black-Capped Chickadee

fake journal april 10 2014
bird watching notes

April 10, 2014, hazy with sun filtering through clouds

  • 8:10 male Spotted Towhee alights at 3 different nearby bushes before arriving at feeder
  • 8:17 song sparrow
  • 8:25 I was off in thought and saw something run by and into the bushes. I think it was a song sparrow.
  • 8:28 Dark-Eyed Junco
  • 8:29 two Black-Capped Chickadees
  • 8:46 two Song Sparrows
  • 8:47 Black-Capped Chickadee
  • 8:48 Black-Capped Chickadee
  • 8:48 Grey Tree Squirrel passes by
  • 8:49 Black-Capped Chickadee

fake journal april 11 2014
notes on leaf arrangement

April 11, 2014, overcast with chance of sun

I filled the bird feeder this morning and had a closer look at the leaves growing on the tree. They are larger now and opening up like a flower. The leaves grow in sets of two with a flower bud on each set. Some of the sets are paired and at differing growth stages.

As a side note: I spent a good part of the day trying to figure out what kind of tree this is. I googled and looked in The Sisley Guide to Trees book but to avail. It has blossoms similar to a dogwood but no fruit. I'll spend this coming week drawing more details and next week, I'll put up my drawings and a photo and see if any of you know this tree:)

joining international fake journal month and sunday sketches

all 2014 fake journal posts will be linked under the label fake journal.

Saturday, April 5, 2014

Bird Watching

fake journal, 2014
black-capped chickadee bird
Drawing to show coloring for Black-capped Chickadee.

fake journal 4.2.14
bird watching 4.2.14
Notes above on coloring for Dark-eyed Junco, Pacific Wren, Black-capped chickadee.

fake journal april 2, 2014
bird watching april 2, 2014
Notes above on coloring for Spotted Towhee.

fake journal 2014
bird watching 4.3.14

Notes above on Pacific Wren and Rufous Hummingbird.

fake journal 2014
backyard bird watching, april 4, 2014
Notes above on interactions between Pacific Wren and Dark-eyed Junco. Also, notes on two American Crows and their collection of nest-making material.

all 2014 fake journal posts will be linked under the label fake journal.

Joining International Fake Journal Month and Sunday Sketches.
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