meal and social hour. The sparrows, towhees and mourning doves are less disturbed by my presence outdoors and will generally mill about as long as I stay quiet and don't make any sudden moves. Sketching birds involves many interruptions and a lot of waiting. The feeder is in our front yard which is about the size of a postage stamp. Every time someone walks by, or a big, noisy truck drives by, or a kid on a skateboard zooms down the street, all of the birds scatter and I'm left waiting to see if they'll come back.
A few nights ago, while waiting for the finches to return I noticed a young white-crowned sparrow perched on one of the obsolete rungs on our telephone pole. The sun was already low enough that there were no shadows and the light was a bit orange. The sparrow stayed for what seemed like forever so I drew a couple of close-ups using my binoculars. Then, when the bird had gone and the finches still hadn't returned, I sketched out the scene.