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Watercolor Tutorial #3 and #4: Cincinnati Invaded! Invasive Species in the Midwest

Cincinnati and much of the U.S. has been invaded! No, the invaders are not villains and I am not referring to COVID-19. I am talking about the green, leafy invaders that you can see along almost any hiking path in Cincinnati, Ohio. I have always understood that invasive species are present and affecting local biodiversity but admittedly have not taken the time to identify and research each species. Since invasive species have always been such a prominent visual in my childhood landscapes, they have simply blended into my surroundings. Until now, I have not paid much attention to the sheer volume they take up. Recently, by simply observing and painting my surroundings, I have started to notice just how much of my local ecosystem...

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Tutorial #2: Watercolor Blob Characters

Greetings! I hope you are all finding ways to relax and make the best of your time at home. I know that is easier said than done as anxiety creeps in, so Chad, my ready and willing husband, and I filmed a simple kid-friendly tutorial that will hopefully bring some chuckles to your home. Read through to the end of this post to see our jokes and learn some fun scientific facts! We call this activity Making Watercolor Blob Characters. Essentially, we are going to blob some water and color onto paper and then make those odd and unexpected shapes come to life! Here's what we came up with on a fun Friday night of isolation... Here are the materials you'll need to join us: Paints: Inktense...

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Watercolor Tutorial #1: Painting an Indian Peacock

Well, here we are, all living in a world ironically connected by isolation. I’m thankful for technology as it serves to build community and foster creativity, and this post is my first attempt at sharing information that will hopefully promote fun and relaxation with the use of some educational materials and a colorful activity. I am now going to ask you to turn your eyes from the overwhelming pandemic to the radiant Indian peafowl (Pavo cristatus). I’ll share a few fun facts below in addition to a watercolor tutorial showing how to paint this proud bird. The tutorial is only 15 minutes long because I had to make it so speedy (just now learning the ropes of YouTube), but the activity should take you...

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Shutterbugs & Scientists: How digital cameras enhance our relationship with nature

The digital camera has become a staple tool in the modern travel suitcase. Today, you will see novice photographers attempting to capture stunning wildlife and landscapes at all National Parks and World Heritage Sites. So many of us haul around cumbersome DSLR cameras accompanied by their various accessories, lenses and filters so that we can remember our travel experiences through vivid 4K resolution. If you fall into this category of traveling shutterbugs, consider yourself a potential citizen scientist because you are using a powerful tool that has led to global conservation initiatives and environmental research. A recent trip to the state of Karnataka, India introduced me to a tangible example of how digital still cameras are changing the future for big cats. During a morning...

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Welcome!

Hello! Welcome to a blog where life, nature, science and wildlife are viewed through a vibrant watercolor lens. Thank you for being here! My name is Abby, and I am a watercolor artist focusing on wildlife, pet portraits and the surrounding natural environment. I am currently a biology graduate student at Oxford Miami University where I get to soak up all that I can learn about conservation and ecological stewardship. (That might explain why you see some APA citations hidden throughout my posts. Geeky, I know.) I believe art offers a platform for people to share their perception of the world in addition to displaying facts and reality in enhanced and engaging ways. It allows us to expose what is most important to us...

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