What’s not to love about painting trees? Even better, painting trees in the beautiful surrounds of Canberra’s Australian National Botanic Gardens. I was invited to demonstrate acrylic sketching techniques as part of NatureArt Lab’s course promotion event on Saturday 21 April at the Earth Festival – celebrating sustainable living with a great vibe, music, good coffee and healthy food choices on the shady Eucalypt Lawn.
I introduced the acrylic demo with a statement about our relationship with trees and my appreciation, as an artist, for forests and the environment. The Japanese philosophy of shinrin-yoku or “forest bathing” is a brilliant way to address the worries and concerns of modern life by immersing ourselves in nature and silent contemplation.
In a similar way, sketching plein air can be a form of meditation – when artists are immersed in the moment, we produce our most authentic response to what we see.
On Wednesday 2 May, I will introduce the “STEP into plein air” event at the National Arboretum on behalf of NatureArt Lab. The three-hour art workshop is held during Canberra Tree Week and takes place amid the beautiful local endangered trees and flowering plants of the Southern Tablelands Ecosystems Park (STEP), Forest 20.
For more information about my next art workshop: