Having been in a very restrictive lock-down situation, due to increasing numbers of covid 19 cases in our state, I’ve been close to home for over 10 weeks now without a definite end in sight; possibly some small relaxation of rules coming into force in October.
My saving grace has been bush-walking with my dog Jack. I’ve been observing the Spring emergence of flora, the desolation after back-burning & slow regrowth, along with the gradual return of native wildlife and birds.
I’ve also noticed the increased number of people trail-walking, many of whom are totally unprepared for the terrain, don’t realise their phones lose reception in some areas and seem to have no idea where they are going and in which direction they are headed. It’s quite astounding.
I also see discarded empty food containers, items just thrown to the side of the trails without a thought: chip packets, coke cans, biscuit wrappers, etc.. So disappointing and a lack of respect for our natural environment. I’ve been walking these trails getting on for 20 years and until our first lock-down in 2020 this was not the case.
Despite a lack of recent human contact I find myself heading for little-used minor trails where I’m unlikely to cross paths with many others, where I don’t have to listen to inane chatter because people are invariably on their mobile phones (until they cut out!) or shouting in small groups as they walk without noticing what is around them. On these small trails I meet other walkers like myself and we’ve created loose friendships, passing the time of day, pointing out things of interest, and introducing each other to hidden pathways and quiet tracks.
For the last 2 months I’ve worked on a project entitled ‘trees‘ based loosely around what I see when Jack and I explore. Some artistic licence has been taken as there are definitely NO sheep where we wander.
The book comprises 5 boards, held together with 2 metal circular clips. Techniques used include monoprinting, masking, stencilling, collage, burnt paper, chine colle, stamping, lino cut printing, etching, machine & hand stitching and drawing.
Here are the individual pages:
It’s been a joy working on this book, just as it was working on my ‘In Isolation‘ book during lock-down in 2020.