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The first Australian nature journaling conference

The first Australian nature journaling conference
At the Queensland Museum Kurilpa entrance

I arrived in Brisbane a few days before the conference began and met Bethan (@journalingwithnature) who very kindly let me stay with her and her family. We went on an outing to the Mt Glorious rainforest for some nature journaling together. It was a very peaceful walk and such a calming place to nature journal. I loved watching the small pademelons hopping around us through the forest, listening to the birds calling (so many I didn't recognise) and gazing up at the towering fig trees.

We also spent some time at her house nature journaling outside with the guinea pigs and before I left we enjoyed a hot drink at the delightful Harry Potter themed café and shop, The Owlery. It was so fantastic to be able to finally meet Bethan and nature journal together. This was all while she was very busy preparing for International Nature Journaling Week and opening her studio for the Arts Trail and Open Studios the following week, so I'm especially grateful for the opportunity to catch up - thanks again Bethan!

Although the conference started on Thursday with the educators workshop I didn't attend until Friday for the actual conference. There were ~50 attendees participating at the Queensland Museum Kurilpa in South Brisbane. It was truly a great pleasure to meet so many people from around Australia interested in nature journaling. I particularly enjoyed the workshops (thanks Katy and Tanya!) and hope that nature journaling continues to grow in Australia. Overall the conference felt successful, and thank you to the organisers and the Queensland Museum for their hard work putting it together.

Due to the busy schedule there wasn't much time to explore the Queensland Museum (unless the workshops went to a particular area) so it was a lovely surprise to have some time before the conference dinner to be able to do so. I did go back after the conference for a few hours of private nature journaling, because I still felt there was a lot I hadn't explored and wanted to see. I got happily engrossed at the insects exhibition and the Queensland native fauna before I had to leave for my flight.

For the field trip I went to the Mt. Coot-tha Botanic Gardens and enjoyed sketching the bush-stone curlews although they were quite active and moved around a lot. I took some photos and hope to do a more detailed study because I still don't feel I've understood their eye and head shape! I found some zen at the fern house but also enjoyed wandering and looking at the bonsai trees.

It was an action-packed time and certainly stimulated my nature journaling, just in time for the International Nature Journaling Week! 😉 I'm hoping I can maintain a more regular nature journaling habit after these events.