Margaret Best Presents An Intimate Relationship with Colour on Thursday, March 4, 2021

With the snow falling and temperatures near zero, it hardly seems possible that spring blooms could be not many weeks away!

Pulsatilla patens, Prairie Crocus, copyright Margaret Best.  Used with permission.

Renowned artist and educator Margaret Best is well versed in the subtleties and surprises of nature in different climates and seasons from having grown up in South Africa, to now residing in Nova Scotia, and from traveling and teaching worldwide. Her botanical art can be found in private collections around the world, as well as at the Hunt Institute of Botanical Documentation of the Carnegie Mellon University and the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew.

Margaret will share some of her research into the innovative color system used by prolific illustrator of plants and animals in the nineteenth century Ferdinand Bauer in an online program for Nature Artists’ Guild members, An Intimate Relationship with Colour, on Thursday, March 4, 2021 beginning at 7 pm.

Please click on an image or on one of the highlighted links to reach Margaret’s website, where you can learn more about her life and art and enjoy images of her stunning paintings.  Nature Artists’ Guild members will receive by email, within the next few weeks, a link and instructions for attending the online program.

Crocus watercolor painting and supplies. Copyright Margaret Best. Used with permission.

From the Middle Triassic until Now, Tonight at 7 for Nature Artists’ Guild Members

Illustration of the oldest known dinosaur relative. Copyright Marlene Hill Donnelly, Field Museum. Please click on the image or this link for a news article about the discovery.

How do you accurately (as possible) illustrate the oldest known dinosaur relative and its habitat using only fossil records from 243 million years ago?  The Nature Artists’ Guild is excited to announce that the speaker at tonight’s online program is likely the only person in the world who has done just that!

This evening, February 4, 2021, beginning at 7 pm via live video, artist, educator, and scientist Marlene Hill Donnelly will share stories of some of her unique and fascinating experiences over the course of her career as a scientific illustrator for the world-renowned Field Museum.  Marlene often illustrated plants and animals that lived millions of years ago by creating her own models based only on fossil records and scientific knowledge.

Marlene has also worked as a freelance artist for the Belle Isle Aquarium, the Smithsonian Institution, HarperCollins, and the Honolulu Zoo, and has taught various botanical and scientific illustration and art classes at The Morton Arboretum and the Chicago Botanic Garden.

Nature Artists’ Guild members were sent an email on January 28, 2021 with a link and instructions for joining the meeting.  Any members who did not receive the link and wish to attend should contact Jane Kellenberger as soon as possible.

Nature Artists’ Guild Welcomes Back Marlene Hill Donnelly on February 4, 2021

It’s been nearly ten years since members of the Nature Artists’ Guild have had the pleasure of attending a presentation by artist, educator, and scientist Marlene Hill Donnelly.  The guild is excited to welcome her back as their first speaker of 2021.

On Thursday evening, February 4, 2021, beginning at 7 pm, via live video, Marlene will talk about some of her unique experiences over the course of her career as a scientific illustrator for the Field Museum and as a freelance artist for the Belle Isle Aquarium, the Smithsonian Institution, HarperCollins, and the Honolulu Zoo.  Marlene has also taught various art and botanical and scientific illustration classes at The Morton Arboretum, and is currently teaching at the Chicago Botanic Garden.

Detail of Landscape Reconstructed – Greenland, copyright Marlene Hill Donnelly.

Instructions for joining this program will be emailed to all Nature Artists’ Guild members later this month. Those who have not yet joined or renewed for 2021 are encouraged to do so before the end of January to ensure that they receive the participation instructions.

Nature Artists’ Guild To Enter Its 35th Year!

The Nature Artists’ Guild of The Morton Arboretum enters its 35th year of art and nature in 2021!

As it has for more than 34 years, membership in the Nature Artists’ Guild in 2021 brings opportunities to participate in programs, paint-outs, exhibits, workshops, and social events (in person or online, as conditions require.)  In addition, the Nature Artists’ Quarterly, featuring news, articles, and artwork by, for, or about members is delivered to every member’s mailbox each season.

Now, before the season becomes too busy, might be a good time for Nature Artists’ Guild members to renew their membership for 2021 (or for new members to join.)  Current members of the guild can renew at a reduced fee (through the end of the month) by clicking here and scrolling down to the appropriate payment button.  New members can click here to join at the regular rate.  If preferred, new members can send a check to the address on the membership form and returning members can send a check to treasurer Catherine Stacy. Use of the membership form is not required as long as the member’s contact information is included with the check or online payment.

 

 

Lara Call Gastinger Presentation Next Week, October 1, 2020

Copyright Lara Call Gastinger. Used with permission. Please click on image to visit laracallgastinger.com.

Lara Call Gastinger’s presentation for members of the Nature Artists’ Guild, Field Journaling, is only one week away!  On Thursday, October 1, 2020 at 7 pm, members of the Nature Artists’ Guild can participate in this special online program.  Details will be e-mailed to all members a few days before the program.

In this presentation Lara will be focusing on journaling in nature but it is well worth the time to visit Lara’s website and Instagram page to view not only her sketchbooks, but stunning finished works like the one pictured above.

An Artful Autumn at the Nature Artists’ Guild

Members of the Nature Artists’ Guild of The Morton Arboretum can look forward to a full Fall of art and nature!

Autumnal Gold, copyright Patricia Mroczka

Some upcoming events include –

  • A virtual lecture this month about the symbolism of art (much of it nature) portrayed on an 18th Century Asian screen. (Postponed until further notice.)
  • A “paint-out” in September where members create art in their own environment and share their experiences through video-chat or by sending images to display on this website.
  • An online presentation about journaling in nature with Lara Call Gastinger. Lara’s workshop at the Arboretum sold out immediately, but all Nature Artists’ Guild members are invited to join her October 1 presentation.
  • A new “Art Encounter” in October that will involve working almost solely in ink.  Its a great way to quickly hone those drawing skills!
  • An online exhibit in November of images of some of the finished artwork that members had hoped to include in the cancelled 2020 Spring or Autumn (Holiday) exhibits.
  • A fun and creative holiday card project in lieu of the annual in-person celebration.

Dates, times, and all the other details about these events will be shared with members through e-mails and announcements on this website.  

Field Journaling with Lara Call Gastinger on October 1, 2020

 

“As a trained plant ecologist, my love of learning and drawing nature is exemplified in my field journals.” – Lara Call Gastinger

Botanical artist and illustrator Lara Call Gastinger will be sharing some of her inspirations, ideas, and techniques for journaling in nature at the October 1, 2020 Nature Artists’ Guild online program.  Lara has received two gold medals at Royal Horticultural Society Botanical Art Shows in London and is the Chief Illustrator for the Flora of Virginia Project.

Please click on this link for a short video that features Lara speaking about some of her travels, discoveries, and inspirations as a “documenter of nature” and her joy in combining the love of both art and science in her work.

Members of the Nature Artists’ Guild will receive an e-mail closer to the program date with specific instructions on how to participate.  

Sketchbook pages, copyright Lara Gastinger. Used with permission.

Lara will also be teaching a three-session online workshop for The Morton Arboretum beginning on October 2, 2020.  During the workshop, Lara will “teach pen illustration techniques, plant identification, page composition, and how to add basic watercolor to your pages. During each live session, students will have the chance to interact with the instructor and each other, asking questions and sharing their work”.  Registration for Visiting Artist: Field Journaling with Lara Gastinger opens on September 1, 2020 by phone or though the Arboretum website’s Learn and experience page Members of the Nature Artists’ Guild can receive a discount for the workshop by registering by phone and confirming their membership.  Update – this workshop is sold out, but Nature Artists’ Guild members will still be able to participate in the program on October 1.

Seven Presenters at the August 6, 2020 Online Meeting of the Nature Artists’ Guild

The first online meeting of the Nature Artists’ Guild is just a few days away, on Thursday, August 6, 2020 at 7 pm.  Members of the Guild were e-mailed instructions on July 26 for joining the meeting. The initial set-up can be done any time ahead of the meeting, and while simple to do, may take a few minutes.  Then, at meeting time, participants can just click on the link and enter the password specified in their e-mail.  A phone number and password is also given for those who would prefer to just listen in.

The seven artists who have agreed to share some of their recent creative experiences are Dan Danielson, Linn Eldred, Vicki Liszewski, Kathi Kuchler, Beata Nowak, Marilyn Peretti and Evalyn Holy.  While we don’t have specifics for each artist’s upcoming presentation, we can tell from artwork that they’ve shared in the past that we can expect a wonderful variety of media, styles and subject matter!

A few examples of previously shared works by some of these artists (please click on any image for the full version and artist’s name) –

 

The Nature Artists’ Guild’s 2020 “August Artist Octet”

The Nature Artists’ Guild has a tradition of inviting three of its talented members to present their inspirations, materials, and methods to fellow members during the annual August meetings.  This year, that “Artist Trio” will be expanded to an “Artist Octet” (or more) as the meeting moves to an online format.

So far, seven members of the Nature Artists’ Guild have agreed to share some of their artistic experiences. We can look forward to hearing from Dan Danielson, Linn Eldred, Vicki Liszewski, Kathi Kuchler, Beata Nowak, Marilyn Peretti and Evalyn Holy on the evening of Thursday, August 6, 2020 beginning at 7 pm.  

Fly, copyright Dan Danielson.

Guild Members will be receiving an e-mail soon with details and instructions for “attending” the online meeting.  Any additional members interested in sharing their recent art experiences should contact Linda Fairbanks.

A Busy March for Nature Artists

Please click on this link to important notices from The Morton Arboretum

 

Coming up in March for members of the Nature Artists’ Guild –

Eastern Towhee, copyright Alex Warnick. Used with permission.

Monday, March 2, 2020 is the last day for members to mail their completed prospectuses for the 2020 Spring Exhibit of Natural History Art.  The link for the prospectus was sent out to all members by e-mail last month.  New members, please don’t hesitate to participate.  The Guild is a supportive, non-competitive organization that values the contributions of nature artists at all skill levels.  Beginners to professionals, we welcome you all!

Update – the Spring exhibit has been postponed until a date to be determined.

Thursday, March 5, 2020 is the date of a very special program sponsored by the Nature Artists’ Guild at the Thornhill Education Center of The Morton Arboretum from 7 until 9 pm.   Visiting Artist Alex Warnick will be sharing some thoughts about her exquisite paintings and illustrations of birds and her adventures in birding. This event is open to all and free-of-charge. Members are encouraged to invite their fellow artists, birders, and nature lovers to this presentation.  Details are in this previous post.

On Saturday, March 7, 2020 a repeat of last month’s Round Table Paint-In event will take place at Thornhill beginning at 1 pm.  Members should contact Linn Eldred if they’d like to participate.  Linn’s contact information is included in the February 19 e-mail sent to members.  All supplies will be provided, and there is no cost to attend this fun and creative event.

And that’s not all!  Plans are in the works for a paint-out at the Jurica-Suchy Nature Museum later in the month.  Details about this popular annual paint-out will be shared as soon as they are finalized.   Update – This event has been postponed until a date to be determined.

A fundraising workshop has been scheduled for Saturday, March 28, 2020 at the Thornhill Education Center.  Supplies will be provided for Nature Artists’ Guild members who wish to participate by painting canvases to be sold at the Spring Exhibit as a fundraiser.  Fundraising workshops are a great place to get to know and enjoy some time with fellow Guild members.  Update – This event has been postponed until a date to be determined.