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The Peace of Wild Things

August 29, 2013

The Peace of Wild Things

         Wendell Berry

When despair for the world grows in me

and I wake in the night at the least sound

in fear of what my life and my children’s lives may be,

I go and lie down where the wood drake

rests in his beauty on the water, and the great heron feeds.

I come into the peace of wild things

who do not tax their lives with forethought

of grief. I come into the presence of still water.

And I feel above me the day-blind stars

waiting with their light. For a time

I rest in the grace of the world, and am free


“Elephants Tree” by Jacqui Beck, Acrylic, 11″x17″

Trees in Art exhibit Northwind Arts Center July 5-28

February 24, 2013

Tree Totems 2 acrylic on canvas 28" x 22"

Cheryl Richey, Tree Totems 2
acrylic on canvas
28″ x 22″

See a wonderful exhibit of Trees in Art Paintings at

Northwind Arts Center Gallery

July 5 -28, 2013

2409 Jefferson Street

Port Townsend, WA

Hours: 12:00 to 5:00  Thursday to Monday

Opening Reception: Saturday July 5, 5:30 – 8:00 pm

Gallery talk Sunday July 7 at 1:00 pm


Many thanks to “TREES IN ART” for the outstanding exhibit you presented here at the Pacific Rim Bonsai Collection!  Despite the single subject of trees, there was incredible diversity of mediums, including graphite, silverpoint, acrylic and collage; styles that ranged from intricate and precise renderings to gestural abstractions; and emotional content that ranged from warmly bucolic and serene to explosively dramatic.

“TREES IN ART” is to my mind among the very best of the exhibits we have presented here over the past twelve years, and for that, you deserve congratulations as well as my thanks.

David De Groot, Curator Pacific Rim Bonsai Collection, Federal Way, WA, May 4 – June 12, 2013

Entangled_72Donna Levitt, “Entangled,” Graphite and Colored Pencil

Elizabeth Smith’s painting, “Ancient Light”

October 4, 2012

Elizabeth Smith

‘Ancient Light’

pen ink and metal leaf on layered paper.

22” x 30″

“The planting of a tree, especially one of the long-living hardwood trees, is a gift which you can make to posterity at almost no cost and with almost no trouble, and if the tree takes root it will far outlive the visible effect of any of your other actions, good or evil.”

George Orwell

Jacqui Beck’s painting, “Mother Tree”

August 11, 2011

Mother Tree acrylic & mixed media 30"x24"

This painting is about how trees are the mothers of us all, how they stand rooted in the earth and support us if we lean on them with care.

“The tree is more than first a seed, then a stem, then a living trunk, and then dead timber.  The tree is a slow, enduring force straining to win the sky.” ~Antoine de Saint-Exupéry

Donna Leavitt’s painting, “The Guardian”

July 19, 2011

The Guardian
Donna Leavitt
46″h x 63″w

“Trees have been imprinted upon my psyche. . . I am enthralled.”

While serving in the Peace Corps (2006 to 2008) I wanted to continue making art by drawing the wonderful trees I was photographing.
In order to be able to bring my work home with me at the end of service I had to devise a way to make large drawings portable! Thus the multiple sheets of paper which could be easily disassembled and packed up.

The Guardian is the first of the drawings done while in Struga, Macedonia, and it is of a poplar tree that resides on the north shore of one of the world’s oldest lakes, Ochrid. I like the presence that the large drawings bring to the viewer, the close-up view, causing the eye to examine texture and form and to feel an intimacy with the subject.  I continue working in this format with trees seen here and in different parts of the world.

Cheryl A. Richey’s painting, “Crackling Arbutus”

June 21, 2011

“Crackling Arbutus”

Cheryl A. Richey

Mixed media on panel

36” x 24”

Water reflections

On crackling arbutus bark.

Bird cries on the wind.

© Cheryl A. Richey

My painting and haiku were inspired by a week’s holiday in a small cottage overlooking Ganges harbor on Saltspring Island off Vancouver Island, British Columbia.  While my husband and I were enjoying the view and solitude we suddenly became aware of crackling, popping sounds that seemed to be coming from the nearby woods.  After carefully listening, observing, and sleuthing, we discovered that the sounds were coming from thick stands of Madrona trees (Arbutus in Canada).  The reddish bark or “skin” of Arbutus trees grows and stretches and finally tears, cracks, and curls uncovering smooth light green wood beneath.  I had never heard this process before.  I was awestruck by the active and audible movement of the trees’ growth and came to change my perception of these beautiful trees as “passive” forest dwellers.  All of my abstract paintings of “tree spirits,” including Cracking Arbutus, attempt to capture or create my sense of the aliveness, mystery, and enduring vitality of trees.

Elizabeth Reed Smith’s painting, “Some Enchanted Evening”

May 13, 2011

“Some Enchanted Evening”

Elizabeth Reed Smith

Mixed Media on Paper  12″ x 14”

This work is inspired by the effect of moonlight through madrona trees on the shores of Puget Sound. Because both the moon and its reflection are applied gold leaf they appear and disappear as the light of day progresses.

“In each of my drawings I endeavor to celebrate nature within a time and space beyond the mere place of inspiration. Like artists throughout time, I invite the viewer to enter my world and, by so doing. make it their own.”

‘The gift of trees is the gift of books, oxygen, poetry and hope.’ Anonymous


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