In 2015 I received a South Dakota Arts Council Artist’s Fellowship to immerse myself in the beauty of the Black Hills. I was also fortunate to be granted a sabbatical from teaching and my days became full of walking, mediating on nature, sketching, and finding beauty close to home.
During my travels I have always collected things, on city streets, along the trail, or from the roadside. Not wanting to draw a traditional still life I drew in each day’s find on the same drawing. This required erasing and moving elements from the previous day, which led to this series of drawings. As the days got colder I set up a still life in my studio and the series progressed. In these drawings I introduce collage elements found during my travels and incorporate these scraps of color as a stand in for an object within the still life. Using gesso and charcoal I craft these into the approximate shape required.
Using my collection of vases and natural elements from my walks I spent the dark months of winter in intense concentration working alone in my studio.