Get Inspired by Enrique Martínez Celaya

Enrique Martínez Celaya (American, born Cuba, 1964) Bird, (detail), 1996, oil and fabric on canvas, 72 × 60 1/8 inches. Museum purchase with funds provided by the Contemporary Art Council, 6-1997.


Observe and document the natural world around you—including the plants, birds, insects and other natural elements. This might be seen in your yard or garden—or on a walk or hike. Take time to focus on the details; then photograph, sketch or paint what you see. Consider meaning and interpretations of your surroundings and your creation. 


  • Camera or camera phone
  • Sketchpad, pencil and/or paper

Follow instructions below.

Step 1

Go outside! Take a walk in your yard or in your neighborhood, or go to a park or take a hike (if available to you in your location).

Step 2

Photograph or sketch plants and wildlife that you see along the way. Carefully observe your subjects from different perspectives and document them two to three times. Experiment with interesting angles and lighting.

Tip: Think about your focus (what’s sharp and directs the viewer) and composition (how images are placed within the overall frame).

Step 3

When you return home, select your favorite image(s). If you are using a camera or camera phone take time to edit, such as cropping out areas that take away from the main image. If you are sketching, redraw, paint or add color to your favorite sketch.

Step 4

Once your work is complete, take time to examine and uncover different meanings and interpretations.