Tuesday, April 6, 2010


Once a month I meet with a great group of women artists. We enjoy the challenge of learning new techniques and sharing information. It's like a monthly artist retreat and we have such a great time being with one another quietly working or wildly experimenting.

In February we were each given a soap box made of recycled cardboard to use for artmaking. I've been working on a my 'Esperance' series for the last few months. It has everything to do with hope for the environment. I actually first came across the term last fall when re-reading the enchanting book The Man Who Planted Trees by Jean Giono. In the book the word is defined as "the feminine word designating the permanent state or condition of living one's life in hopeful tranquilty." That concept speaks to me deeply. As do trees.

 Recently Sharmon Davidson posted a wonderful collection of tree photos and quotes. For me she represents a kindred spirit and as such she is usually operating on a shared wave length. The day she ran the post I was reading it as the chain saws were sending shock waves through my studio/home. The sound permeated the day. After the trucks pulled away massive healthy Standing Ones lay at the street and yet another property in our forested neighborhood had been stripped bare. It's been happening more and more the last few years.
Storms and images on the news of fallen trees cause some individuals to rampantly cut trees.
So Esperance is a series where I am investigating the hope that nature brings. And although we cut and slice and dice our environments out of ignorance and/or fear I trust that there are enough of us who love this planet and her hair of trees to continue to do all that we can to support her health and well being even as we do the same for ourselves. We used to plant a tree whenever we heard one being cut down but our little acre is now wonderfully filled so I have taken to sending a donation to The Nature Conservancy or The Environmental Defense Fund or one of the other conservation organizations that I am so grateful for, knowing that there is a big picture.
How funny...I was given a soap box to incorporate into my work and it got me to stand on one!!...to stand up for our most magnificent and beneficial planetary crown of trees.

In March a member of our group, an amazing fiber artist, gave each of us a couple of  cardboard cones that fiber comes wound around. And so they too became part of this series...

~May you sing the day


  1. hey D, a beautiful tribute and reflection of the beauty of nature and memory of trees. also great incorporation of elements; a renewal from the discarded often seen as waste. I'm excited with your series!! xo k

  2. Thank you for your thought provoking post and for the link to 'The Life and Love of Trees', I must obtain a copy. It was great to see your artistic works using recycled materials.

  3. wonderful upcycling and love the tree shapes in the boxes, Sharmon's post was great, I love being a tree freak! great post!

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  5. Esperance has to be enlarged to appreciate all the details. It's such an uplifting piece. Lovely work Donna.

  6. Thanks K...the series is unfolding in ways that are surprising me ...that feels quiet and slow.

    Ian the book 'The Life and Love of Trees' is EXCEPTIONAL...I know you will swoon....a friend just sent it and it couldn't have come at a better time.
    LaDolce, I love the term upcycling...maybe I've heard the term ut it feels new and fresh today...Thanks!
    I appreciate your suggestion Lydia...I'm here to learn!
    Oh...thanks for taking the time to enlarge the piece Robyn...there is a good bit of texture plus it has beeswax brushed over the trees in the box and the aroma is yummy.

  7. What a lovely blog and how lucky you are to have a group of women artists to meet with each month. Most of us work so much on our own.


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