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56605 Sitka Drive
Otis, OR 97368
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The Art of Insect Illustration

The Art of Insect Illustration
Zebith Thalden
Date and Time:
10:00am - 4:00pm
Total Cost:
Minimum Age Level:
Skill Level:
at risk
Registration for this workshop is closed.
Registration for members begins
February 27, 2018
If you are a member, please sign in above. If you are not yet a member, you can purchase a membership
The open enrollment period begins on
March 13, 2018

Workshop registration opens for members on February 27.

Workshop Overview

Have you ever looked closely at an insect? Have you seen the powdery scales on a butterfly wing or the iridescent ridges of a beetle’s shell? How about the curled tongue of a moth? In this workshop, we will celebrate the colors, patterns, and textures found in the incredible world of insects! The emphasis will be on anatomical structure, aesthetic compositions, and appreciating these extraordinary creatures. Exercises will allow participants to practice drawing techniques as they work toward a finished piece. Demonstrations will cover traditional drawing and painting techniques as well as foundation design principles.

About the Instructor(s)

Zebith Thalden is the owner and nature illustrator of Intersectus Design in Portland, Oregon. She has taught courses in woodworking, drawing, painting, graphic design, copper-smithing and environmental education. Her book The Butterfly Artist: How to Observe, Draw, and Paint the Fascinating World of Insects will be published by Timber Press in March 2019. She received an MFA from Goddard College and a BFA from the Rhode Island School of Design.

Materials List: Students Bring


•   Sketchbook: 8x10 or 9x12 (Any high-quality blank sketchbook will do, Zebith recommends Green Strathmore Recycled Sketchbook or Blue Strathmore Windpower Sketchbook.)

•   Acrylic Paint Set: (Brands: Liquitex, Golden, Reeves, etc.) (If you don’t get a set, recommended colors are Cadmium Red, Cadmium Yellow, Cobalt Blue, Ultramarine Blue, Burnt Umber, Burnt Sienna, Titanium White, Mars Black, and Permanent Green.)

•   Paint Palette: Anything you’d like to use is fine.  Keep in mind that acrylic dries quickly and will become a permanent color/texture on your palette.

•   Colored Pencil set of 12: (be sure there is a good range of color that includes brown, white, and black). (Zebith uses Prismacolor, but Blick or other high-quality pencil should be fine.)

•   Pencil: HB hardness (any brand)

•   Paint Brushes 2 or more: (Zebith likes short/thin Round and Flat multipurpose synthetic bristle brushes- #000 to #3.

•   Tracing Paper (we will only need a small amount) if you have it already bring it or purchase a small pad)

•   A small selection of individual sheets of paper. Zebith enjoys using Hot Press Watercolor Paper (Arches makes a nice one... just make sure it's white and between 90-140lb paper).


•   Additional colors/media

•   Pencil sharpener (handheld or plug-in)

•   Ruler

•   Artist tape (1\" thickness is ideal but any size will do)

•   Eraser - Mapped Epure are great

•   Magnifiers/magnifying glass (any kind)

•   Specimens or insects that you have found that might be used as a subject. (No living insects please!)

•   Art board (masonite or gator board, to tilt work surface, approximately 12\"x15\")

Materials List Provided by Instructor(s)

• Insect specimens

• Magnifiers

• Microscope

• Electric pencil sharpener

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