Welcome to Birchtree Studio, an art studio based in historic Exeter, NH. I illustrate mostly natural history subjects but also provide a variety of other art services. Take a look around these pages. Enjoy the visit.

My home page will feature a different watercolor sketch each month. This is a way for me to show what I do in my sketch book, although sometimes the sketch might be on a sheet of watercolor paper, or it might be produced from a photograph. It’s unpredictable. I never know what kind of art might come through me. One thing is predictable: I will always be producing art.

I hope you will become as excited as I am to find out each month what shows up on this page.

Sandy McDermott

From my sketchbook...

Raynes Farm Exeter, NH

This 3 x 9" sketch was done on sight at the peak of autumn. Rayne's Farm is a 46-acre open space owned by the town of Exeter where I live. It's one of few remaining properties in the area that retain its history as a working farm. The farm has roots gong all the way back to the 17th century and was most recently used as a dairy farm. When that business shut down around 1968p ieces of the property were sold off until 46 acres remained. Exeter purchased the property in 2002 with the help of a LCHIP (NH Land and Community Heritage Investment Program) grant.

Nowadays it is used primarily as a place of quiet activity such as walking and birding. Exeter's Conservation Committee holds a variety of public events each year such as a moonlight snowshoe walk and, just recently, a pumpkin-throwing fundraiser. What my sketch doesn't show is a massive and beautiful red barn, built in 1860. There's a large, grassy hill between the barn and the backside of the property; I was more taken with the line of autumn color in the form of trees on the far side of this hill.

I haven't spent enough time here but plan to make it a regular spot for birding and sketching. And my next sketch from Raynes Farm will incorporate the red barn.