Saturday, November 13, 2010

Sketching and the Fun of Publishing! -- Vickie Henderson

I didn't fully appreciate how much fun this would be.  It was a goal and something I've always wanted to accomplish.  But not until seeing it in print, did I fully realize the satisfaction of researching and writing an article for a magazine and contributing both art and photographs to its publication.  

Below you see one of the sketches I created this year while working on a bird banding article for the TN Conservationist magazine, an idea that came to me when I was introduced to bird banding two years ago.  While this sketch was not included, another fun sketch of an Eastern Towhee was published in the article.
What I've loved the most about banding sessions, besides the opportunity to enjoy the detailed beauty of a bird's feathers, is observing bird personalities.  That's what the sketch above is about, those special characteristics and behaviors that are as much a part of a bird's identity as its color and the habitat it selects.  To have all of these characteristics close at hand is a marvel.  To sketch it is to slow it all down, absorb it more deeply, and internalize the bird in a way that produces even more awe and gratitude for nature's wonder and beauty.

And then there are the funny moments.  The sketchbook page that was published in the article told a story, the funniest story I've heard at the banding table.  While a bander-in-training was processing a female Eastern Towhee, she laid an egg in his hand!
To read more about the article and see the two-page layout, visit Tracking the Birds of Seven Islands at Vickie Henderson Art. and TN Conservationist Magazine, Banding and Sketching at Vickie's Sketchbook.


  1. Congratulations!!! It must be a blast seeing your work in print! And you're so deserving of the honor!

  2. Vickie,

    Your sketches are wonderful. I am in love birds myself. How cool that you got to participate in banding and have had an article published.


  3. WONDERFUL, congratulations, Vickie!! SO well deserved...

  4. Congratulations! I'm happy for you and wish you a lot of success

  5. Yes - congratulations! Your sketch looks fantastic on the page! The egg story is too funny...:D

    I can relate to your love of observing those birds up close - some of my best childhood memories come from helping my father band birds as part of his job for the Iowa State Conservation Commission. I just wish I had kept a nature journal back then.

  6. Congratulations Vickie! Having the article published is a wonderful feather in your cap. .. and those are wonderful bird banding sketches. I miss holding those handfuls of life and the fun of their skedaddling away when released.

  7. What must it feel like to have your art published in a magazine? Wow! I can imagine feeling SO proud and SO chuffed! Well done! I am so pleased for you!!! :oD

  8. Thank you, each and everyone, for your congratulations and comments.

    I must add, that the opportunity to practice here, on this blog, in front of a large and supportive audience, has added considerably to my courage, determination and confidence along the way. For this, an extra 'thank you' goes to our correspondents and to all of you who view and read this blog!


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