A Barn Owl by Frank Jarvis

About the books

The world from a bird artist's perspective

With hundreds of striking drawings and lively sketches, Frank’s enthusiasm and meticulous descriptions invite you in to the private world of a committed birder, with all the attendant highs and lows. You find you have joined him staring out to sea on a shingle bank, sea watching on a windy day in the drizzle, or still and intense waiting for an elusive rarity that appears for the briefest of moments from a tangle of vegetation.

These private field notes and drawings have been drawn from Frank's copious research files and collections of notebooks.


Latest volume

Volume 2

A Bird Guide to the Fields of Experience by Frank Jarvis


Reviews of Volume 2

by prominent nature writers, photographers & ornithologists

So much more than a field guide, this book makes an art of paying attention to and recording the natural world. At a time when we need it the most, Jarvis’s work is a beacon of astute insights and observational expertise that carries the jizz of a committed fanatic; this is science with heart-stopping illustrations, notebooks with all the revelation, luminosity and clarity of John James Audubon; and with its honest reflections and daily observations it matches Gilbert White's letters and journals. A treasury that will quickly become a classic, Frank Jarvis’s book deserves pride of place in the canon of nature writing, a rich and nourishing resource to return to again and again. The wisdom in these pages will never grow old! Let it be a talisman against the decline of species, a wake-up call to what we need to preserve.

Miriam Darlington
Nature writer

Reading this book is as vivid as the best day's birdwatching, and I cannot imagine a better companion than Frank Jarvis – his vivid eye brings our birdlife alive through his wonderful illustrations and acute observations. A source of inspiration for wildlife lovers and aspiring artists of any level.

Patrick Barkham
Author and amateur naturalist

The second volume of Frank Jarvis's birding diaries, taking us from 1993 to 2002, is a wonderful treat for the eyes and mind. Through his eyes we explore East Anglia's wild places, with immersive and beautifully written field notes alongside a stunning array of artworks, meticulously observed yet sparkling with life and spontaneity. Every page is sure to inspire birders old and young to rediscover the art of field notes, studies and sketches.

Marianne Taylor
Writer and photographer

Frank Jarvis once again invites us to accompany him, this time on his travels in East Anglia between 1993 and 2001. As well as his delightful illustrations, his lively text clearly shows the importance he attached to careful observation in the field, as well as his deep love for his adopted county of Norfolk.

Moss Taylor
Author and ornithologist

The thing that comes across in looking through these journals is Frank Jarvis's unbounded enthusiasm for recording; his writing and his lively sketchbooks capture the essence of dedicated birding. Even mentioning such inconsequential details as a shag flying past and landing in a ditch makes his accounts so immediate that one can easily imagine being beside him in the field, sharing the experience.

Martin Woodcock
Ornithological artist


— Volume 1 —

A Bird Guide to the Fields of Experience by Frank Jarvis

Frank Jarvis' lovely volume of field sketches captures all the immediacy of being there and of knowing wildlife first hand. It is rich in feeling for nature. It is full of the intimacies that only come from a lifetime of observation.

— Mark Cocker, Author and Naturalist

Frank's diary pages not only capture beautifully his subjects but his words document a wonderful period in birdwatching — an era largely free of technology when binoculars, notebook and fieldcraft were the essentials for a day out in the field.

— James McCallum, Wildlife Artist