Introduction to Botanical Drawing in Graphite with Corry Buckwalter
Instructor: Corry Buckwalter
July 10 – July 24, 2021 (three Saturdays)
9:30 a.m. – 12:30 p.m.
SVAC and Hildene Members: $120; Non-member: $150

Each class includes a brief lecture on the history of botanical illustration for inspiration using slides in a powerpoint, basic botany, step-by-step demonstrations of illustration techniques, work sessions, as well as instructor feedback on individual work for student improvement during each class. Exercises taught in the drawing class will develop participants’ control of line, shading and texture. Participants will gain a deeper understanding of plant anatomy, botanical details and observational drawing skills which will foster more accurate, expressive and graceful drawings and paintings. Optional homework assignments will develop student skills and will include instructor feedback. Daily work will be conducted both in the studio and on the grounds of SVAC and Hildene, The Lincoln Family Home.

Class 1: Learn botanical drawing from the beginning in this three day course
From how to hold your pencil correctly to developing careful observation skills, this course covers the basic topics to empower you to draw from life. Topics include botany, a brief history of botanical illustration, using your drawing materials, handling specimens, line drawing, shading, and more. Connect with nature in a deeper way than you might have ever experienced before.

Class 2: Creating botanical portraits using the principles of line, form, shape and value
In the second day of the course, participants will learn various ways to develop tone and texture to create lively illustrations of plants and flowers. Basic forms will be studied and practiced so that students will have the confidence to draw life forms of any variety from bulbs to funghi to succulents and more.

Class 3: Continuing botanical portraits using layered drawings
In the final day of the course, students will learn and practice the techniques to create a finished drawing on quality paper of a subject of their choice. Photos of final drawings may be submitted anytime after the end of the course to the instructor for feedback.

COVID-19 protocols will be in place. Limited scholarships are available. Contact Erin Kaufman at or 802-367-1306.

Botanical Drawing Supplies:

  • Pad of smooth drawing paper, i.e. Bristol Smooth, white, 9” x 12”, at least 25 sheets, (inexpensive brand such as Canson)
  • Inexpensive bound sketch pad, 8” x 10” or 9” x 12”
  • White trace paper in a 12” roll OR a pad of 8.5” x 11” OR a pad of 9” x 12”
  • Set of high quality graphite pencils of various hardness (F, 2H, H, HB, B, 2B, 5B) (Derwent, Faber Castell, or Caran d’Ache Grafwood brand are recommended)
  • 0.3 mechanical pencil, H lead
  • Kneaded gray eraser (Faber-Castell or Prismacolor)
  • White plastic eraser (Staedtler Mars)
  • Portable pencil sharpener (Muji is recommended, available at, but others are fine) -Removable tape roll (painter’s blue or 3M removable)
  • Ruler, a clear plastic one is best for measuring specimens (such as 6” Westcott brand) -Embossing stylus (Fiskar or Kemper brand)
  • Paper: 1 sheet 8.5” x 11” Bristol Vellum 500 series for final illustration -Clear red mylar: 6” x 6” sheet

Corry Buckwalter is an art instructor, artist, author, and landscape designer based in Ann Arbor, Michigan. She learned the craft of painting from established realist painter Elaine S. Wilson, and is committed to teaching observational drawing and painting techniques in a systematic process for artistic confidence for each student. Corry studied botanical illustration with botanical artist Ann Swan and at the School of Botanical Art and Illustration at Denver Botanical Gardens. She regularly teaches drawing, painting and botanical art classes for adults and teens at the Ann Arbor Art Center and is on the visual arts faculty at Washtenaw Community College in Michigan. Corry has shown and sold her paintings in local juried exhibitions for more than 10 years. In addition to teaching art classes, she designs residential landscape projects in Southeast Michigan. Corry has written feature articles about urban design, the environment and city planning for numerous magazines since 2007. She holds a Master of Landscape Architecture degree and a Master of City and Regional Planning degree from Cornell University and grew up spending her summers in Manchester, Vermont. Corry is a member of the American Society of Botanical Artists and ASLA. Visit to learn more and follow Corry on Instagram @corrybuckwalter_studio

July 10 at 9:30 am
9:30 am — 12:30 pm (3h)