Wednesday, February 20, 2013

A Year in the Garden

For years, I have been a member of the Chicago Botanic Gardens. I first discovered the Garden when I was a teenager, snapping photos of the burgeoning landscape for a high school photography project. I witnessed the installation of the Linneaus statue in the Heritage Garden and watched flocks of geese take flight from Evening Island. Over the years, the CBG has evolved and grown into a welcome retreat and recurring source of inspiration for me. I have spent many days exploring the grounds, admiring it's bounty and beauty and drawing from the flora and fauna for many of my paintings and prints.

This year, I will attempt to chronicle one year at the Chicago Botanic Gardens. Each month, I will visit the Gardens and create a drawing, painting or print that captures the essence of Gardens through the seasons.

I began this creative journey in January.

"There is a slumbering subterranean fire in nature which never goes out, and which no cold can chill."
     - Henry David Thoreau

For me, January is a month marked by solitude and contemplation. The hustle and bustle of the Holidays is past and the new year offers time for reflection and new beginnings.
Inspired by Zen philosophy and Thoreau's "A Winter Walk," I decided to start my year in the Japanese Garden. Work is now in progress.