Preparing to teach fellow artists

Being asked to teach botanical art outside of my home environment is always exciting …  I agree with delight, and then I start to think.  What can I say to fellow botanical artists to stimulate and help them with their artwork?  

A successful short lecture takes a great deal of analysis and research.  I love being totally submersed in the subject: questioning the rules, looking at other artists’ works, analyzing how it was achieved from a technical basis and recognizing the sort of emotional response I get as a viewer.  

There are so many types of botanical artworks: careful scientific studies, grand displays of  plants in vivid glorious colour, gentle little observations of plants most people would overlook, and all sorts of things in between.  Once I have found a theme that interests me, I tag all sorts of images and gradually sort them into categories, discarding some along the way until I have about twenty slides which demonstrate my analysis best.  When the time comes to speak alongside the slide show, I find it easier to ad lib straight from the heart, but can only do so because of the deep interest I have in looking at the world of plants through my own and other artists’ eyes.

The joy of all this preparation is that I learn so much myself, and have a visual feast along the way. 

My next teaching session is in a couple of weeks in the UK, so I hope I can bring something worthwhile to the artists.  Wish me luck and clear thinking!

One comment

  1. Wendy Burchell says:

    All the very best for your time in the UK Vicki – you will definitely inspire more artists. Come back with all your new (and old) ideas – they all work and are so amazingly sound! If we all did what you teach in the beginning , we’d get there a lot faster!
    Have a fabulous time.
    Lots of love,

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