Monterey Bay Nature Journal Club

Nature Journaling Virtual sessions

3rd Sundays at 9:30 AM Pacific Time, US

All levels are welcome!

Meeting Day and time:

Sundays at 09:30 AM Pacific (US and Canada)

Please check calendar here for dates, topics and links

3-part Format:

  • First, 9:30 am Pacific: Log into Zoom meeting: I’ll share some ideas, do a demonstration and offer a nature journaling prompt
  • Then, we log off (around 10:20) and solo nature journaling outdoors (or indoors).
  • 11:00 am Pacific: Log back into Zoom (same meeting ID) for community connecting and journal sharing.

This program is donation-Based, all are welcome:

Suggested $20 donation.

Recording of this month’s session

You can access the recording for 7 days after the live session, HERE.

Nature Journaling In-person field trips

Meet us monthly in various locations in the Monterey Bay area. Check the calendar for dates.

Resources and Links

Support Spark in Nature on Patreon with your regular pledge here.

Suggested $20 donation. Any amount is gratefully received so that I can continue to bring free and affordable quality nature journaling workshops.

Thank you for supporting efforts to bring nature journaling to others and creating a more nature-connected global community.


See mini workshops and courses here

Videos of previous journal club sessions on this page.

Sharing page

Here is where we can share our nature journal pages and offer encouragement and support to others. We are using Padlet- link is here.

Nature Journaling Online community: Spark Circles

Join our membership community!

Its a private space for sharing, nurturing and growing our nature connection through journaling. This will not be on social media. Please come visit to check it out here.

Facebook group: Monterey Bay Nature Journal Club

Melinda Nakagawa

What is Nature Journaling?

Nature journaling is about observing nature using all our senses, and recording our experience on the page.

We learn to SEE rather than just look, and we begin to find the extraordinary in the most ordinary subjects. By keeping a nature journal, we hone our awareness skills and develop our naturalist and drawing skills.

Drawing for learning, not as art

We use words, visual elements (sketches, diagrams), and numbers. We use drawing not as art but rather as a learning tool. It’s a way to communicate our experience, sharpen our observation skills, make notes and get curious!

Nature benefits

A growing body of research shows that time in nature has a powerful effect by reducing stress, improving well-being, calming the nervous system, and sparking joy and creativity.

Therefore, nature journaling is the perfect antidote to nature deficit disorder and a counter-balance to the demands of our tech-driven world.

Nature connection: to nature and to others

Each moment we spend focusing our attention on a subject, noticing and wondering about it, we cast out an invisible thread of connection to it, like a spider’s web. Every time we encounter it, we add another thread, until those threads become strings, then ropes.

Nature journaling with others increases a sense of community, even online. We see nature through their eyes, and pick up new ways to document information on the page. Each person’s shared observations expand the knowledge and learning for the entire group.

So, spending time in nature, whether its gazing out your window, tending to your houseplants or garden, sitting outside listening to birds, or nature journaling, it all works! Nature promotes well-being and enriches the lives of our families and communities.

Richard Louv, author of The Last Child in the Woods, and The Nature Principle writes about the effects of nature deficit disorder in children and in adults, and that time in Nature is profoundly healing on many levels. He calls it “Vitamin N” for Nature.

Let’s all get some Vitamin N in our nearby nature! Bring paper or sketchbook, pen or pencil, and invite your family and friends.

What people are saying:

With a friendly demeanor and effectively-focused teaching, Melinda encourages sharing from students in an amazingly comfortable way. Experienced artists and novices participate in the very same workshop and she miraculously creates an environment where we are ALL equal participants. I HIGHLY recommend her brilliant and warm approach to teaching.

Walter Mahoski, Art teacher, retired

“Sunday nature journal club is the highlight of my week!” – Jan R., Art Teacher

“I’d recommend this to anyone interested in nature journaling. Melinda hosts a group in nearby Monterey and is an excellent guide. She’s a marine biologist and has been leading groups for a long time. I was in her meeting this past Sunday and really enjoyed it. Check it out.”
Brian H. of The Great Valley Nature Journal Club

Journal sharing Monterey gardens
Nature Journaling at the tidepools, Pacific Grove, CA