Sunday, March 3, 2019

Week Two in the Gardens

Everything living has its own momentum. Seasons change, weather shifts and things gradually alter. They grow, develop and eventually decay. Each of these phases can interest me as an artist. Week two of my residency in the Gardens, I spent a lot more time just looking and thinking. The initial excitement of getting out there and drawing as much as I could in a week has been replaced by a quieter sense of things fermenting in my consciousness. I am looking deeper and closer and finding lots of tiny botanical treasures on the ground that I have brought back to the studio to examine in closer detail. I have done quite a lot of walking and have been to parts of the Gardens that I had never explored before.

Robyn Bauer Botanical Drawing

My subject matter this week has been various materials found in the Australian plant areas.  All of these "bits" I have discovered, are in various stages of decomposition. The shapes are what interest me the most. Such diversity and all found within the one week of February.

Robyn Bauer Botanical Drawing
This one above includes a large Bunya nut and one of its spiky leaves. Other berries and pods are in various stages of drying out.

Robyn Bauer Botanical Drawing

In some of these drawings I have traced around the leaves and used colour to indicate my delight at my discoveries. I am in a sense, interpreting what I find through the filter of myself. They are responses to the plants and to the settings in which I find them. There is quite a bit of fine detail and some of these objects are tiny, such as the white pods at top right.

Robyn Bauer Botanical Painting

I have used a colour overlapping effect that one finds in the Garden landscape, while at the same time giving each object its own space. I hope this makes sense to people reading this, because the real analogy is my life generally.  To really give this residency my best shot, I have attempted to make space in my own life to allow the response and creativity to happen. I have made a few sacrifices and given up a few other commitments to allow this to take place and I am happy to do so.

Robyn Bauer Botanical Drawing

The one above is mostly about the flowering stenocarpus sinuatus. There are a few other silhouettes of leaves behind the realistically painted ones. I can't resist a bit of pattern making as well.

Robyn Bauer Studio Shot

Finally a picture of my table where I am currently working. I have some botanical and Japanese prints as inspiration above the collected green paraphernalia.

I am fully aware that I am trying different approaches, media and techniques before I create some larger paintings where hopefully it will all come together. I am happy to share this journey and this process. I have never been more fully aware of the true value of process over results. I think that if I embrace the fact that I don't know where all this will lead, it will lead somewhere truly unexpected and worth arriving at!

See you next week.

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