Hope Hilton came to our class on Wednesday and took us on a silent walk. I wasn’t really sure of the reasoning behind painting plants until we actually went to do it.
But, I’m getting ahead of myself. Hope Hilton, a fantastic artist, came and talked to us and led us through an exercise. It started with her explaining that she wasn’t a professional arborist in any sense. She started painting trees and making an exhibit on Agnes Scott’s arborium later in life. She explained the exercise, the fact that the walk to the tree area would be silent, and the materials. We were to first do a blind contour of a tree as a class, then find a tree that wants us to paint them.
Well our silent walk over was very meditative, and was about 50% of the process for me. We were just looking at the shape of leaves, noticing what trees grew where. It reminded me how pretty the campus was. On top of that, we saw one of the two owls that live on campus! Just chillin’ in a tree! It was crazy.
So we finish the walk and go to the clearing by the front loop, and there I met a long needled pine tree. It grows super tall, looks super sad, and is super resilient in fires. In fact, it sort of needs forest fires to grow. We did the blind contour, which made e feel so uneasy. The trees are endangered, you see. And looking up at its thin, swaying form make me anxious.
After LHP(I gave them a nickname because we’re well acquainted), we found our own tree. And let. me. tell. you. Hope had a lot of materiel for us to work with and I chose this delicate little watercolor set that had a ‘collapsable’ brush and I thought it was so cute. I want one, but I know A) I would hardly have time to paint with it and 2)It would be too expensive for my bank account right now. Anyway, I found this huge maple tree that was just starting to turn. Branches apparently are my strong suite. Leaves are not. But I ended up with something worth displaying.
We walked back with our works of art and a few specimens, which I taped to my window because I like the filtered light through them. It was a great nice day. Nothing stressful, just #treevibes.