Winter Tree
(watercolour by Alice Walker)

Martha Gray writes:


'On a beautiful chilly Saturday 12th of March, an intrepid group crossed the A40 for a tree-identification workshop starting in the Milennium Wood (entry opposite the Evenlode, a great wood to explore it if you're not already familiar with it).  The challenge: identifying trees in winter, when they mostly don't have leaves or flowers.  With the help of Toby Swift, an expert from the Wychwood Trust, we learned how to tell the key native trees apart by their buds, bark and branch structures. (And occasionally by the tell-tale oak leaves on the ground...).  

Alice Walker, the course art teacher, shepherded us back to the Sports Pavilion shortly before our hands froze and warmed us up with hot drinks and cakes before leading us through a wonderful series of art exercises based on appreciating the forms we learned about in the wood. Starting with graphite rubbings, progressing through pen drawings of structure and charcoal sketches, we experimented with different media to capture the beauty of the bare winter branch. Twigs dipped in ink were a special revelation. A lovely way to spend the morning, both restful and educational, as well as a great opportunity to connect with local people interested in deepening their relationship with our local plants' 


winter Trees Workshop MontagePhoto Alice Walker
Don’t miss the next NRN Wild Arts Workshop on Saturday 2nd April Carbon Capture and Pigment at Long Mead Barn with experts Clare Lawson and Eric White. Info and registration here.
Check out what's been added to the Creative Nature Diary Gallery -which is already rich with drawings, paintings, collages and poetry from our precious wild spaces. Its not to late to join in!
NRN Wild Arts is supported financially and strategically by Natural England