Capturing the Seasons

  • 10:00 AM
  • Carlton Marshes, Lowestoft


Capturing the Seasons -

Field Sketchbook workshop series – 18 June

Discover how to create a field sketchbook, observing and recording signs of the season with botanical and wildlife artist, Ruth Wharrier.

Ruth studied Botanical Illustration at The Chelsea Physic Garden, London. She exhibits widely and examples of her natural history illustrations can be seen on the tourist information boards on Pakefield Cliff, Suffolk. Ruth paints in watercolour on paper, vellum and wood. She also creates etchings and works in pen and ink. Ruth is regularly commissioned to decorate harpsichords, for international clients, with flora and fauna using historical painting techniques.

This course will enable you to create your own naturalist’s sketchbook and have the confidence to go out and draw!

Workshops can be taken individually as one- or two-day sessions (Saturday and Monday March 10 & 12), or as a full course with seasonal dates scheduled across the year (June 16 & 18; Sept 29 & Oct 1; Dec 1 & 3).

The focus will be on observational sketching techniques that can be used outside whilst walking and also on detailed drawing techniques that can be used back at home.

Based at Carlton Marshes, the course will allow participants the opportunity to observe and record the changing seasons within this stunning reserve. The centre at Carlton Mashes offers an inspiring setting with enviable views out across the marshes and reed beds. For botanists, Carlton Marshes is one of the very best places in Suffolk for the sheer variety of plants.

A wildlife oasis on the edge of Lowestoft

With flower-studded marshes, pools teeming with water life and the shimmer of dragonflies during summer, Carlton Marshes is the Suffolk Broads at their best.

For sheer excitement and awe, birds of prey are hard to beat and marsh harrier, barn owl and hobby are all at home in the skies above Carlton Marshes.

But the underwater world of the dykes is where the real drama is played out, by plants like the insectivorous bladderwort, which traps and digests water fleas in bladder-like sacs under water. Scan the dyke edges too, for a glimpse of Britain’s biggest spider, the fen raft spider which was released here in 2012 to bolster the precariously low UK population.

In early summer there is a fabulous display of southern marsh orchid, marsh marigold and ragged-robin, together with the scarcer bogbean, bog pimpernel and marsh cinquefoill.

The marshes are also ideal for wintering wildfowl and breeding waders with large numbers of wigeon, teal and snipe.