Robinson-Gay Gallery 2020

Northumbrian Wildlife Drawing Workshop
Robinson-Gay Art Gallery, Hexham
1 March 2020


Despite the blustery conditions of Storm Jorge, all attendees made both workshops at the beautiful Hexham art gallery, Robinson-Gay which saw a wonderful celebration of Northumbrian wildlife with outstanding Biro drawings created by all!

Session 2 Robinson-Gaye Art Gallery, Hexham

Children from age 6 upwards attended both workshops alongside adults.  Also attending was a professional illustrator from Seattle as well a Northumbrian jewellery designer and her daughter. 

Everyone had a tale to tell about the Northumbrian wildlife they had spotted including Betty who had seen deer, Will and Anna who had spied an otter in the River Tyne and Rosie who had seen a seal. 

For these workshops, Jane selected iconic Northumbrian species she had come across. The workshop also focused on how to help local wildlife:

  • LOOK AFTER YOUR OWN BACK YARD! Looking after local environments can help biodiversity flourish, no matter where we live and also help combat the climate emergency
  • Plant pollinator-friendly plants in gardens, pots and window boxes. Many pollinator-friendly plants from garden centre’s contain pesticides so plant from seed
  • If you don’t have a garden, volunteer for community urban or woodland planting schemes or beach clean-ups. Our gardens, parks and urban and rural wild spaces can become a network of nature reserves.


Image credit: Meadowmania

  • Using pesticides is harmful to both wildlife, and humans. Stop using pesticides and let nature look after itself, sparrows and other creatures will eat your greenfly! Leave weeds to grow in your garden, they are after all wildflowers and plants

Images top row left to right: Death's Head Hawkmoth and Small Elephant Hawkmoth; bottom row left to right: Oleander Hawkmoth and Broad banded Bee Hawkmoth 2012 colour Biro drawings, Jane Lee McCracken 


Northumbrian species studied included:

Red Fox
Brown Hare 
Red Squirrel
Roe Deer
Emperor Moth
Common Toad
Grey Seal


Rosie age 6 with her Biro drawing of a red fox


At just six years old, Rosie created an astonishing drawing of a red fox! She captured the fox's face perfectly and went on to produce a drawing of a grey seal and hare. Sophia's beautiful hare drawn in her expressive style appeared jubilant this Spring day. She also made a wonderful drawing of a roe deer.

Sophia age 9 with her hare drawing

Atlantic puffin's are also known as Parrots of the Sea and Juliet's meticulous drawing captured this sentiment perfectly. Her drawing was beautifully executed with diligence paid to the puffin's features. 


Juliet age 10 with her Puffin drawing  

Betty paid homage to deer she had seen with her wonderful drawing of a Roe Deer, with bold mark-making and wonderful texture to the deer's antlers. Her father Andy also made an exquisite sketch and drawing of a Roe Deer.


Betty age 7 with her Roe Deer and Badger drawings

Will displays a natural gift for drawing with exciting artworks created in every workshop he attends. His otter and red squirrel were effortlessly executed and capture the spirit of these elusive Northumbrian creatures.


Will with his red squirrel and otter drawings

Will's sister Anna, made an iconic drawing of a badger, in a bold and confident style.

Anna age 8 with her badger drawing

Noah made a brilliant drawing of an adder. Noah's father who hadn't drawn for many years astonished all with an incredible drawing of a hare with delicate mark making.

Noah age 7 with his adder and second drawing of a hare

It was heartening to see both Noah and Emily, who has begun a splendid work in progress, champion adders. These shy and often misunderstood creatures, avoid humans and are vital to local biodiversity.

Emily age 13 with her adder drawing in progress

Linda began a sumptuous drawing of a common toad that appeared to walk across the page, Sarah, made a beautiful drawing of a red squirrel with a stunning face, Kate began a wonderful red fox and Sarah effortlessly completed a gorgeous drawing of a hare.

Ruby's astonishingly accomplished red fox drawing in progress displays incredibly sensitive use of her medium and beautifully rendered eyes. Lizzy's exquisite puffin captures the dark tones of a stormy sea and her sister Catherine began an epic drawing of a badger using purple Biros, while friend Tally's work in progress of an Emperor Moth shows great attention to detail.

Red Fox 2020 colour Biro drawing, Rosie


Grey Seal 2020 colour Biro drawing, Rosie


Hare 2020 colour Biro drawing, Rosie


Red Fox colour Biro drawing, Ruby age 15


Common Toad colour Biro drawing work in progress, Linda Medley 

Update from Linda, 6 March 2020, of her Common Toad colour Biro drawing


Hare 2020 colour Biro drawing, Sarah


Atlantic Puffin 2020 colour Biro drawing, Juliet age 10


Atlantic Puffin 2020 colour Biro drawing, Lizzy age 13


Badger 2020 colour Biro drawing, Catherine


Adder 2020 colour Biro drawing, Noah age 7


Hare 2020 Biro drawing, Noah age 7


Hare 2020 Biro Drawing, Matt


Red Squirrel 2020 colour Biro drawing, Sarah


Roe Deer colour Biro drawing, Sophia age 9


Hare 2020 colour Biro drawing, Sophia age 9


Atlantic Puffin 2020 colour Biro drawing, Sophia age 9


Badger 2020 colour Biro drawing, Betty age 7


Roe Deer 2020 colour Biro drawing, Betty age 7


Roe Deer 2020 colour Biro drawing, Andy


European Otter 2020 colour Biro drawing, Will age 6


Red Squirrel 2020 colour Biro drawing, Will age 6


Adder 2020 colour Biro drawing, Emily age 13


Emperor Moth 2020 colour Biro drawing, Tally age 13


Badger 2020 Biro drawing, Anna age 8


Red Fox 2020 colour Biro drawing, Kate









Thank you to all who attended for your amazing drawings and for supporting Born Free through ticket sales.