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Nature Sketch

Guided by a Nature Sketch artist and naturalist, this course will cover our Nature Sketch curriculum of drawing instruction using a pencil and sketchbook, combined with nature-study that will supplement your own adventures outdoors! Because we are Canada-wide, we will make general observations about the changing seasons, how to identify the plants and animals we see, and discuss broader environmental themes. We will also discuss the career and art of Robert Bateman with a focus on his values and creative processes.

Ticket cost is per household. All minors must have an accompanying guardian present.

Supplies needed:

  • Good quality sketchbook
  • HB pencil
  • White eraser

Nature Sketch is an outdoor nature program that focuses on sketching and observing wildlife habitats in unique ecosystems. Guided by a sketch artist and a naturalist, this program encourages participants to connect to natural environments in their local community using a pencil and a sketchbook.

Participants will learn about their local area and wildlife using established eco-literacy principles from Robert Bateman. The program includes 6 weeks of ecosystem outings, full lesson plans, a special Nature Sketch sketchbook, and sketching materials.

The health and safety of our Nature Sketch participants, instructors and volunteers are of the utmost importance to us. Due to COVID-19, we are adding new protocols and will continue to monitor and comply with provincial updates and directives. A full list of protocols is available on our website.

Supplies needed:

  • HB pencil
  • White eraser
  • Backpack
  • Water bottle
  • Nut-free snack
  • Sketchbooks will be provided.


Sue Macartney

Sue Macartney is a children’s book author-illustrator, with a professional background in graphic design and art education. She is passionate about the environment and has been exploring nature on Canada’s west coast and around the world since she was a small child.

Melissa Bracken

Melissa decided at a very young age her purpose in life was to advocate for environmental connection and sustainability using art. Over the years this journey has taken her down many paths, leading to a large skill set. She has strong backgrounds and substantial certification in Environmental Education, Psychology, Music, Art, Biology and Geography. Currently, Melissa is pursuing a Master of Arts Degree in Environmental Education and Communication at Royal Roads University and has obtained her Bachelor of Arts in Psychology from Vancouver Island University. She has taught all of the above subjects and has over 15 years of experience in recreational education. In her spare time, Melissa researches ways to care for her local environment and writes environmental music.

Maggie Chow

Maggie has been serving the community with inspired programs and events for artists of all ages for over 28 years. She studied drawing and painting in Vancouver and San Francisco; however, it was the Reggio Emilia philosophy in early childhood education that has shaped her practice most as an art educator. She also has special interests in place-based learning and eco-awareness. She is now a full-time artist and teaches across B.C. Maggie is a member of the National Art Education Association and a founding member of Arts and Play Society, a non-profit organization that supports the pedagogy of play and using art and nature to create a space for social connection.

Student Gallery

Winter 2020