2019 Winter Encounter in Week 2

Initial line drawings and graphite drawings from Week 1 of the 2019 Winter Encounter have been posted under this website’s Member Artwork tab, and they are an excellent start.  Congratulations, participants!

Evelyn Grala, with her surprise instructions for Week 2, though, may have caused a bit of a stir!  Rather than just asking the artists to use a different medium, as many were obviously expecting, Evelyn asked them to use a very different technique using negative space. Judging from some of the initial drawings, that may be very difficult to accomplish. Fortunately, nature artists are generally a resourceful bunch and will likely be able to rise to the occasion.

Please click on any of these drawings by Evelyn to see a larger version –

Wood Block Printing by Benjamin Calvert III on February 7, 2019

The Nature Artists’ Guild of The Morton Arboretum is pleased to announce that the first program of 2019 will feature Benjamin Calvert III.  On Thursday evening, February 7, 2019, from 7 until 9 pm, Benjamin will share some of his artwork, his story, his techniques, and his inspirations in the Thornhill Education Center of The Morton Arboretum.  All are invited to attend what promises to be a fascinating program.

Great Migrator Rest Stop, copyright 2018, Benjamin F Calvert III. Used with permission.

Some quotes from Benjamin’s artist statement

I have a strong feeling for nature, and the wood complements my images. Different types of wood provide varied and often fascinating backgrounds, depending upon the subject.

The majority of my creations are printed on Japanese Kozuki paper, using oil based inks.

Pulling that first print off the block is pure joy. The excitement multiplies when there are multiple blocks for each color involved. Each successive color is a layer that informs the mystery and appeal of the final image.

Josh’s Rocks, copyright 2017, Benjamin F Calvert III. Used with permission.

Please click on either of the above images or on the highlighted link to view more artwork and read more about Benjamin on his website, benjamincalvert.com.

This program is open to all, and is free of charge for attendance, parking, and admission to The Morton Arboretum.  Attendees should let the gate attendant at the Arboretum know they are there for the Nature Artists’ Guild program and they will be directed to Thornhill.

Nature Artists’ Guild’s 2019 Winter Encounter Begins

The Nature Artists’ Guild’s 2019 Winter Encounter has begun!  Participants will be creating artwork using the same subject and composition, but with different methods and media each week.

As Evelyn Grala illustrates here, the first step is to choose and draw the subject and transfer the drawing to tracing paper so that it can be used each time, and the first week’s medium will be graphite, in any or all of its forms.  Evelyn will contact participants with details and a suggested medium each week for four weeks.  There is still time for Nature Artists’ Guild members to participate by contacting her to be added to the e-mail list.

Artwork will be shared on this website as the project proceeds, so check back often.

Easy and Enjoyable New Year’s Resolutions for Nature Artists

Why not a few resolutions for 2019 that are enjoyable and easy to keep?  Here are a few for artists at every skill level –

  • Learn new art techniques and methods from renowned artists from the local area as well as from across the country (and occasionally around the world)
  • Participate in wonderful and well-attended exhibitions at The Morton Arboretum and other venues
  • Attend paint-outs with fellow artists, often at locations only accessible as part of an artist’s group
  • Pick up tips and inspiration from artists who are also interested in nature, but whose work varies widely in style, specific subject matter, and technique

Nature Artists’ Guild at Orchids by Hausermann, an annual winter paint-out location.

2019 could be the year to increase artistic skills, learn a new technique, exhibit for the first (or 100th) time, or just have many opportunities to learn from and gain inspiration from fellow artists, all while having fun and enjoying the natural world. Becoming a member of (or renewing membership to) the Nature Artists’ Guild will make it much easier to keep those resolutions!

Please click on this link to the Membership Brochure to learn more. Membership in the Nature Artists’ Guild does not require membership at The Morton Arboretum.  A preview of some of the planned events for 2019 will be coming soon.

Nature Artists’ Guild’s First Exhibit of 2019

The first exhibit of work by members of the Nature Artists’ Guild of The Morton Arboretum next year will take place at the Downers Grove Public Library from January 2 until February 2, 2019.

Current members of the Guild will need to return their completed prospectuses (e-mailed to members on November 17, 2018) by Monday, December 17, 2018 to be eligible to participate.  This one is easy!  Since the artwork must have been included in a Nature Artists’ Guild exhibition within the past five years, it is already completed, titled, framed, and ready to hang, and just needs to be dropped off at the library on Saturday, December 29, 2018 between 10 and 11 am.  All details are in the prospectus.

The Downers Grove Public Library has a long and interesting history as well as an impressive collection of original artwork.  The Nature Artists’ Guild is excited and proud to once again begin the new year as the first participant in their rotating exhibit, Active in the Galleries.


A Gift of Nature and Art for 2019

A unique and wonderful gift for a beginning or experienced artist and nature lover in your life might be a membership to the Nature Artists’ Guild of The Morton Arboretum.  Membership includes the opportunity to join like-minded artists at paint-outs, exhibitions, art and nature programs, and other interesting and enjoyable events.  Membership in The Morton Arboretum is not required to become a member of the Nature Artists’ Guild.  Gift memberships or new memberships to the Guild can be purchased by clicking on the Membership Brochure and mailing a check to the address provided.


Let it Snow! Nature Artists’ Guild’s 2018 Holiday Gathering

The theme of the 2018 Nature Artists’ Guild Holiday Gathering is “Let it Snow”!  Whether it snows or not on Thursday, December 6, 2018, members of the Nature Artists’ Guild and their guests are invited to share in music, festivities, food, and fun from 6 until 9 pm at the historic and elegant Founder’s Room in the Thornhill Education Center of The Morton Arboretum.

Nature Artists’ Guild members can check their e-mail from early November, or contact Gail Diedrichsen for full details.

Winter Willows, watercolor, copyright Gary Chipman