You have to Look at What’s in Front of You.

Mid-February.

Morning time.

Outside, in the Woods Hole passage, our winter vacationers escape northern ice.

Some gather in lee waters, in flocks, by the hundreds and thousands.

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Others gather singly or in small groups, and rest on rocks.

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There’s a group of Woods Hole humans that gather on land, inside, on some of these mornings.

“We” are participants in a natural history drawing group, which meets twice a week during the fall, winter, and spring.

We are lucky to be able to learn with a wonderful teacher.

We don’t rest on rocks, we sit on chairs, and we stare, at what is in front of us.

Then we wiggle our fingers.

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During these hours there are many periods of silence, of the silence of concentration.

It’s that wonderful kind of in-the-moment concentration, when perception of  time stops, when after some hours are gone, and it’s time to go home, you ask yourself, “Didn’t I just get here?”.

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We draw insects, leaves, shells, butterflies, plants, birds, skulls, and more.

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Mostly we use colored pencils.

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“Short little strokes!” is one of our mantras.

(The drawings don’t look so good when visible, distinct strokes interrupt your work.)

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Our work is slow, but rewarding.

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