Thankful Thursday - Natural Beauties, Take Two

" Nature holds the key to our aesthetic, intellectual, cognitive, and even spiritual satisfaction."  ~E. O. Wilson

Penny's blog post last week got me to thinking about my own appreciation for the beauty of nature.  At this time of year, here in North Carolina, everything is in full, glorious bloom.  The intense heat of July and August haven't yet caused flowers to wilt, and the great amount of rain in recent weeks has accelerated the process of growth and bloom.  We're thankful the dreariness of the rainy days has given way to the brilliance of sunny days filled with the visual splendor and fantastic aromas of the newly blooming flowers and trees.  On our deck, we have many of my favorites:  gardenias, mandevillas, impatiens, and hibiscus, as you can see here.

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I am particularly proud of my potted gardenia tree.  Unwilling to abandon it to the frost at the end of its growing season last year, I brought it indoors.  Although I had never attempted to do so before, I hoped to be able to care for it until it was time to put it outside again.  I confess that my resolve almost faltered as I watched it steadily lose about half of its leaves (!), and begin to look very sad.  We put it out on the deck in early April, and watched hopefully as it slowly perked up (fertilizer helped), produced more leaves, and many, many buds.  And yes, I did a little happy dance on the day the first bud opened to reveal its lovely white petals and its divine scent (that's the first blossom in the upper left photo)! I appreciate both the resurgence of the tree, and the reminder that perseverance, care, and a generous dose of hope can work wonders.

Nature reminds us to pause, take it all in, and appreciate the beauty which surrounds us, and I'm thankful for that which greets me just outside my door.

I hope you'll take a moment appreciate your natural surroundings--you may be surprised at what catches your eye!

Until next time,



Thankful Thursday - Natural Beauties

Lately I find that the natural world is informing my creative work more and more.  While I cannot clearly express the ‘why’ of this, I am immensely grateful for these ongoing occurrences.  It is interesting to me that there doesn’t seem to be a singular theme to this trend – it’s not only references to trees, or water, or birds – it’s the whole of it:  the grimy inconveniences and unfortunate turns of the weather along with the Magritte-esque skies and Monet-like moments among the lily pads.

I just love the reflection of the trees and sky in the water, here...

Whether I am capturing the essence of a place, as in my Oceansong series, or jotting a quick Haiku to remember a moment:  it is increasingly the beauties of nature that appear – again and again.  One might argue that perhaps I am a bit more aware and therefore more receptive to these cues; however, it seems ‘bigger’ than that (?)  Whatever the impetus, I am loving the outcome!

Oceansong I -- an ode to the colors and songs of the sea

My latest workshop offering also takes a turn on the carousel of loveliness provided by the profundity of this time of year.  Print Naturally is a fun-filled look at nature printing with the GELLI Plate (a synthetic gelatin plate for monoprinting).  I absolutely love the riotous merging of Spring into Summer – everything is so fresh and lush and GREEN.  Trees, vines, shrubbery, and agricultural endeavors blend harmoniously into the most amazing assortment of hues – it can be somewhat overwhelming!?  Later in the Summer, everything gets so bedraggled from the heat and battering of summer storms.  But now, NOW things are at their verdant peak!  *sw00n!*

Print Naturally -- a workshop that focuses on capturing the beauties of nature

An added bonus to the Your Creative Connection experience is the copious beauty of the locations for each of our events.  All of the photos on our website were taken at the Haw River State Park, where we will convene for four glorious days of creative exploration in October.  The play of light through the trees, the gentle breeze whispering its secrets to the Long Leaf Pines, and the twinkle of stars in a clear night sky…  We can hardly wait to revel in this hide-away of natural inspiration with you!  Registration is quick and easy – you can reserve your seat today with the payment of your deposit ($150).  Please note:  today (05/31) is the last day to take advantage of our 3-payment option.  Take a look around, and please contact us with any questions or concerns.

Until next time!