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Art and Nature

Nature it’s self is full of art. Think about the amazing colours only found on flowers, all the varieties or rich deep greens in tree leaves or they way they change colour in fall. Plants in the world around us are their own pieces of art really. It’s not juts the plants either, it’s the ocean the wide plains the dessert sands that are all inspiring places of wonder. So if you are feeling stuck for some artistic inspiration, how about taking a trip outdoors and looking at what nature has to offer you. Here are a few suggestions to help you incorporate nature into your artwork.

Landscapes

Landscapes are a beautiful idea if you are wanting to take in a whole scene. If you don’t live in the country and are struggling to find nature around you, take a trip out on a bus or train or even drive to the countryside or the coast, take time to walk around first and take in with your own eyes everything you see. Then if a certain place seems to be calling to you, set out your things and begin to interpret the landscape your own way. Landscapes don’t have to be exact either. You can use water colours, charcoal, acrylic, pen or pencil and interpret the landscape however your creative style dictates. If you don’t have time to sit on a grassy hill overlooking the ocean for days on end with your easel then you can always take a picture, even just using your phone and then print it out to paint off at a later date.

If time or commitments do not let you head out and away from the city try having an explore around parks or nature reserves or even the botanical gardens to get inspired and surround yourself with nature.

Collecting

Collecting things from nature can start of great craft projects and even inspire drawings. Go for some long walks and take in what is around you down to the fallen leaves and scattered feathers.

Leaves and feathers can look beautiful put onto good paper and then frames in 3d frames. Design patterns with them and find different ways you could display them in your house. You can make mobiles with them or use the feathers along with string to make dream catchers.

If you live by the ocean, collect driftwood and shells and create your own mobiles with them too. You can purchase felt tip permanent markers and draw mandalas and designs on sticks, pebbles and rocks, or even leaves. The are so many little things you can start collecting. Always keep your eyes out for things of beauty. Pressing flowers can turn into beautiful art works also.

Botanical drawing

If it’s fine lines you’re into how about trying your hand at botanical drawing? Botanical drawing often uses pencil and pen to recreate the fine lines of a specific plant, showing off it’s interesting characteristics and distinguishing them from other plants. With botanical drawing you can often learn a lot more about the plants than from sketching them from a distance. Noticing every fine hair on a stem or edge of a leaf can be a beautiful way to learn about the plants you see even commonly on the day to day. These drawings don’t need to be done just for text books but can make beautiful presents too. If your mother has a favourite flower, try drawing it for her and adding it’s scientific name at the bottom. You can also create larger pictures incorporating your favorite plants or particular families of them. Go to a printing shop and get them made into prints for a tea towel!! There are so many things you can do with your beautiful botanical drawings.

Photography

Photography can be an amazing way to capture nature. Whether you are going for a dramatic landscape, a sunset or sunrise or the smaller tiny details, with photography the options are endless. Take a look online at some nature photography that appeals to you, it could be seascapes or even animals. Go out and try to replicate some shot yourself, just to help you out at the start until you get more of a feel for your own style and what you prefer to capture. Look at the patterns that nature creates and try to capture the in interesting ways. If you can, buy or borrow a macro lens to allow you to capture things up close and in a lot of detail. Another thing to think about is lighting also. A scene can change very dramatically with the lighting. A leaf may look a little plain and boring until the sunlight shines through it and illuminates its veins and changes the colour from an average green to a glowing yellow. The ocean may look just normal until the sun starts to set over it and golden light spills forth. Remember weather is nature too, so incorporate that into your art. Things don’t have to have sunshine to look beautiful. A stormy grey clouded sky can look beautifully dramatic in contrast to a white sand dune.

Take it all in

Try to take in your surrounds when in nature and notice the small things because it’s often those that can be the most inspiring. Even just sitting in a grassy spot in the sun for an hour and watching what goes on around you can do your soul some good and your creative artistic mind. Nature has so much to offer us in the way of inspiration so let yourself be inspired and don’t be afraid to get abstract with it either. You don’t have to paint things just as you see them, but maybe you want to just use the colours that you have seen, a mixture of greens with splashes of pinks or yellows in an abstract colour wash. Nature is there to be interpreted by you the way you choose to see it. There is no right or wrong way to be inspired. Just get yourself out of the house and into the outdoors and let nature work its magic on you.

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