It takes a gifted artist to become a great teacher and those who dare to teach never cease to learn.

Thursday, October 8, 2015

Fall Greetings from Hibiscus classroom -

(Bev Johnson, colored pencil)

Nights are getting chillier in Colorado and the mountains have got their first dusting of snow. Our learning experiences continue in Hibiscus: we have had lots of graphite, colored pencil, and some watercolor classes. We illustrated some insects collected from the Gardens which are now in the Gardens' growing insect collection. Last weekend we learned about the historic art of Chinese Flower Painting from Ms. Sally Yu Leung of San Francisco. All twelve students from that class agreed that the technique is challenging and certainly different from the traditional scientific illustration.
  (Linda Forbess, Chinese Flower Painting)
 Carduus nutans  by Shiere Melin, Graphite) 
(Syrhidae toxomerus - haverfly approaching Gallardia grandiflora, Susan Willis, Graphite)

For mere images from the recently completed classes, please click here

Sunday, October 4, 2015

Surprise Visit by James Gurney!

View from Denver Botanic Gardens' romantic garden south towards our herb garden. James Gurney, casein (5"x 8")

While traveling through Denver, James Gurney unexpectedly had couple of extra hours and he chose to devote those to Denver Botanic Gardens. Excellent decision!
He will in the near future write about his visit on Gurney Journey.

Saturday, October 3, 2015

Congratulations to 2015 Graduates!

(Marj Hopkins, colored pencil)
Join me to congratulate the 8 artists who are in 2015 receiving the Foundational Certificate in Botanical Art and Illustration from Denver Botanic Gardens School of Botanical Art and Illustration: Karen Boggs-Bryant, Noreen Goetz, Patricia Greenberg, Linda Forbess, Marj Hopkins, Dawn Huston, Diane Inman and Constance Neuber. 
We are impressed with the level of competence, and thoroughly proud of you. Please click here to see some random examples from each portfolio. 
The graduation ceremony will be held in conjunction of the Annual Botanical Illustration Art Show (Steppe Plants: Botanical Ilustrations Featuring Plant Select®) on Sunday, November 22, 1-2 p.m. at Denver Botanic Gardens Gates Hall. 

Artists, 2015 Graduates and their families are invited to attend!
(Patricia Greenberg, Watercolor)

"In Boom" in Cafe Botanique - Wedensday, October 7, 6:30 p.m.

Édouard Manet (French, 1832–1883)Flowers in a Crystal Vase, ca. 1882Oil on canvas, 127⁄8 × 95⁄8 in. (32.7 × 24.5 cm)National Gallery of Art, Washington, D.C., Ailsa Mellon Bruce Collection,1970.17.37.

In Bloom: Painting Flowers in the Age of Impressionism
Molly Medakovich, Ph.D., Department of Learning & EngagementDenver Art Museum

A seemingly simple and often overlooked subject in the history of art, the flower was a significant source of inspiration to French artists of the 1700s and 1800s. We'll explore the trajectory of styles and approaches to flower painting across time, from the exacting eye of artists who painted in the detailed tradition of botanical illustration, to the expressive experiments in color and paint by the Impressionists. Discover personal stories, creative experiments and interesting anecdotes of artists who embraced this sensory subject during the early modern period.

Molly Medakovich is a museum educator and art historian. She works in the Learning & Engagement Department at the Denver Art Museum, serving on exhibition teams, experimenting with programs and hands-on activities in permanent collection galleries, and training docents to create engaging experiences for the variety of visitors who walk through the museum’s doors. She has a Ph.D. in 18th- and 19th-century art history and, in addition to her work at the DAM, teaches colleges art history classes at the University of Denver and the University of Colorado at Colorado Springs.
Wednesday, October 7, 6:30-8 p.m.
Gates Hall

Friday, October 2, 2015

Bird Illustration at El Charco del Ingenio

Are you interested of visiting the lovely San Miguel de Allende in November? Randy Raak will be instructing a bird illustration course at El Charco del Ingenio on November 16-20. This is possible through the collaboration between Denver Botanic Gardens and El Charco.

Sunday, September 27, 2015

September Untitled-night at Denver Art Museum

(30-minute expressive ink-sketches by Susan DiMarchi)

The September Untitled night at Denver Art Museum was called Offshoot and focused on everything that flowers can inspire. Three of our instructors were involved in this event to represent our school: Susan DiMarchi was demonstrating expressive ink, Susan Rubin had two 30-minute workshops on textile design and Randy Raak had also two workshops on scratchboard technique. 
As always we enjoyed participating and meeting enthusiastic arts lovers.

Susan Rubin's plan for the 30-minute textile design workshops

Randy Raak gave his 30-minute workshops on scratchboard technique with the help of  Mr. Bones, who is here posing with his portrait executed in 30 minutes by Randy Raak.

See more images about our participation by clicking here

Thursday, September 24, 2015

Lynne Chapman about Denver Botanic Gardens and The Power of Social Media:

(Victoria Lilies at Denver Botanic Gardens by Lynne Chapman)

For some weeks ago we had a guest instructor from the U.K., award-winning children book illustrator Lynne Chapman. Here is what she wrote about her visit with us:

Thursday, September 17, 2015

We have been working hard #1...

(Colored Pencil by Rebecca Swain)

In addition to our core classes we have recently completed courses in Illustrating Colorado mushrooms, Water lilies and Roses. We have also had classes in Herbs and Poisonous plants. 
Last weekend award winning illustrator Lynne Chapman from Sheffield, U.K. demonstrated for the students how to design  the characters in a picture book effectively. 
Finally Sarah Homfray, also from the U.K. returned for the third time to teach us traditional embroidery techniques, this time blackwork which can be traced back 500 years and likely originates in Spain. Blackwork is like a refined value study done with needle and thread instead of graphite pencil or ink.
See more photos from our classes by clicking here.

(graphite by Elizabeth Lafemina)

Tuesday, September 15, 2015

Science of Forensic Art in Cafe Botanique, September 16, 6:30 p.m.

(by Cynthia March)

Science of Forensic Art
Cynthia March, Forensic Artist, Denver, CO

A forensic artist assists law enforcement by combining artistic skills with scientific information to aid in criminal investigations and case prosecutions. During this talk four different categories of forensic art will be discussed to clarify when and how forensic art is used in investigations.

Cynthia March received her forensic training from Stuart Park Forensics, Denver FBI & CBI, The National Center for Missing and Exploited Children and forensic artist Karen Taylor. She currently works with law enforcement

Wednesday, September 16, 6:30-8 p.m.
Gates Hall

Wednesday, September 9, 2015

STEPPE PLANTS: Botanical Illustrations Featuring Plant Select®

(colored pencil by Marj Hopkins)

THE CALL IS OPEN FOR SUBMISSIONS: Annual juried exhibit from the School of Botanical Art and Illustration highlights species from Plant Select®, a leading nonprofit cultivator, and distributor of plants suited to the high plains and intermountain regions. 
Entries are accepted until October 9, 2015. 
The exhibit display time: November 22, 2015 - February 14, 2016 
Venue: Gates Garden Court Gallery, Denver Botanic Gardens.

Please click here for more details about the exhibit.