Visual Arts Workshop

Botanical Drawing – Spring Flowers
with Dorota Haber-Lehigh
Saturday, April 10 | 1:00pm to 4:00pm
via Zoom | Zoom link will be sent the day before the workshop


Botanical Drawing – Spring Flowers

We are entering a season of ephemeral beauty. You might find flowering magnolias, dogwood, or azaleas in gardens, while in the coastal forest, you might see flowering salal, thimbleberries, bleeding heart, and chocolate lilies. We will practice drawing delicate textures of petals and complex forms of unfolding flowers using colored pencils. You may focus on a single petal or the whole flower. We will review colored pencil techniques: layering, blending, and burnishing. If you have watercolor, you may want to experiment with a watercolor underpainting. I would recommend hot press watercolor paper for that. Although drawing from a realistic style will be the focus, individual interpretations will be encouraged and celebrated.

Plant Subject Materials:
Gather a variety of plants for your subjects: tulips, magnolias, or other flowering plants and branches, etc. Live specimens are preferred over working with photographs.

• Photographs are fine for this class; personal photographs are a better choice so we do not run into copyright issues.
Also, we may request preserved specimens from Bioquip. If you order butterflies, ask to have them mounted.
• Variety of plant subjects of our choice: daffodils, tulips or other flowering branches, etc.
Live specimens are preferred over working from photographs.
• Sketchbook of choice
• Pencil (either H or F)
• Kneaded eraser
• Hand -held pencil sharpener, such as Alvin Brass Bullet
• Pigma Micron Pen (005) black
• Set of artist quality colored pencils (Prismacolor Premier, Faber Castell Polychromos, Pablo by
Caran d’ache, Derwent Colorsoft)
• Good quality drawing paper: Choose one from the list
• White Paper (Dorota works on either Stonehenge Aqua hot press 140 lbs or Fluid 100 watercolor paper 140 lbs hot press.
You can buy one sheet and cut it into smaller pieces

Other good colored pencil paper is Strathmore Bristol Smooth. If you like a brown surface Dorota recommends Toned Tan Sketch paper sketchbook by Strathmore, Kraft by Stonehenge (Legion Paper) or Mixed Media Toned Tan by Strathmore. You do not need all this paper, just choose one or two to try.

• Embossing tool (Pergamano Fine Stylus 0.5 mm-
• Colorless blender of your choice, for example Caran d’ache wax colorless blender, or Copic colorless blender marker, number 0

Supplies may be found at
Dots ‘N Doodles in Astoria

Online retailers
Dick Blick

Dorota Haber-Lehigh is an artist, educator, and naturalist with a passion for plants of the Pacific Northwest. Born in Poland, Dorota loves foraging for berries, mushroom hunting, field sketching, and collecting specimens. Dorota holds a Diploma in Botanical Illustration from the Society of Botanical Artists in London. She also has degrees in Art and International Studies with a focus on indigenous cultures, and a master’s degree in teaching. She is a member of Oregon Botanical Artists, Pacific Northwest Botanical Artists, and the American Society of Botanical Artists. Recently Dorota was an Artist in Residence at Bloedel Reserve on Bainbridge Island, Washington.  Dorota exhibits and teaches drawing regionally. Dorota is interested in the healing power of plants and nature and enjoys drawing plants that have medicinal properties. She has authored two ethnobotanical coloring books: “ABC of Native Plants of the Coastal PNW” and “Native Berries of the Coastal PNW. In 2019 she was commissioned by Columbia Memorial Hospital to provide 25 illustrations of Native Plants. More about Dorata email:[email protected]