"There is not a 'fragment' in all nature, for every relative fragment of one thing is a full harmonious unit in itself." John Muir
If I could only work in one medium, it would be with graphite pencil.
I will draw with any pencil at hand. But when I have a choice, especially when I'm working in my studio, I will always use Staedtler pencils. I like the gentleness/hardness and silver-light of Staedtler's high-Hs; and I work a lot in the deep darks/blacks of Staedtler's high-Bs.
I draw on many papers -- probably without as much judgment as would be expected from the more fastidious.
The inherent abstraction of "black and white" appeals to me. The accessibility of the pencil feels universal, democratic, and inviting -- inviting me to draw (which means, to see).
Watercolor is the medium that intimidates and attracts me more than any other. The patience and skill it requires -- to be done in the ways that I admire -- is demanding.
I paint with Schmincke Horadam Aquarelle Watercolor Pan sets.
I hate the suggestions that "watercolor" means works of delicate, pastel-colored, and "sweet" images. Watercolor is a difficult and (often) unforgiving medium -- a test of the artist's skill and openness to risk.
I draw in colored pencil only with Caran D'Ache pencils.
Colored pencil is an inviting and frustrating medium. The softness and ease of handling the pencil is inviting -- but to get strong impact in the image requires work and work and work -- over-drawing and layering. The medium requires "looking again, and again."
A brilliant colored pencil drawing is a rarity.
"Pen and Ink" is the most free and frighting medium. There is no erasing. The line you draw is the The Line That Should Be Drawn.
In the studio I work with Speedball pens and nibs and Higgins drawing inks.
I also use Sakura Pigma Micron pens, both for some studio work and for en plain air sketching.
"Studies" or "exercises" or "etudes" are rewarding (but not "art").
Practice doesn't always make perfect, but practice provides insight and perspective. And learning.
In recent years I have been photographing with a Nikon D7100 and a Nikon 5100 with a variety of lenses, most often AF-S DX NIKKOR 18-105mm, AF-S VR Zoom-NIKKOR 70-300mm, and AF-S DX NIKKOR 10-24mm. I do minimal corrections, using only Adobe Photoshop Lightroom 5.
In botanical photos, I want strong architecture/angularity, high contrast, and deep color. Plants are amazingly strong and resilient -- they are survivors in the game of life with a longer history than humans'.
I try to make images that respond to our desire for "beauty" in nature, but I also want to celebrate the "engineering" of plants.