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During my second residency at Vermont Studio Center, I found a way to use my drawing skills as an advocate for nature and wildlife. Walking and hiking in the woods and State/National parks has always been a spiritual and creative journey for me; a need to get back to my roots, so to speak—back to a sense of wholeness by observing the beauty and chaos of nature.
For years, I have collected driftwood, and amassed hundreds of photographs of tree trunks, bark and huge gnarly roots. I’m obsessed with the visual beauty and texture of old weathered driftwood, twisted branches and roots of fallen, uprooted trees. The distorted shapes, the haunting faces, the strange creatures, birds and animals peering out at me from dying logs and craggy bark captivate me. I embarked on a series of graphite drawings that would—and did—ease me back into my work and allow me to create something I could make my own! One of my drawings, Everglades, is not only art, but also a political and ecological statement. After a trip to Everglades, and saw what bad shape the park was in, I came up with the idea to incorporate animals in the park in a driftwood drawing. And, by incorporating words I felt I could get the message out in my own small way.
I feel as an artist, it is important to have this much needed conversation of how we are polluting our waters, drilling, fracking, confiscating land, as well as, bringing wildlife to the brink of extinction by destroying their natural habitats.
My goal is to keep evolving along these themes—and to find my Wild Spirit in my artist soul!
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