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Nature Inspired Art | A New Collection

Down at the Creek, a nature inspired series of paintings

The other day I went out with my plein air pack, intending to paint a nature inspired scene down at the creek. As usual, I’m using exclusively Ozark pigments (handmade watercolors) for this. After settling down on one of the big rocks, I started putting some color down on the paper. I heard footsteps in the dry leaves on the ground and when I turned around, I startled a fawn. If I had not also been startled myself, she might have walked right up to me to see what I was doing. But instead, when I turned, she ran off. It was a young fawn, still sporting spots.

I went back to work, enjoying the quiet and cool morning, listening to the water trickle by. I’m not real good at plein air. What I see doesn’t look like what turns up on my canvas. But often it’s pleasing enough, even if it isn’t photographic representation. It always is nature inspired art, though.

However, this time things went more awry than usual. Instead of painting what I saw, I painted what I imagined. And a cast of characters was born from that sideways jaunt.

collection still in progress

Right now, I’m working on the third painting in the collection. As with all of my art, it *is* nature inspired, but it’s not an attempt at realism. It’s closer to whimsy, but I’m really enjoying creating these scenes. I use a combination of real places along the creek, real rocks and photos or observation of critters for models, but they take on a fantasy element as they veer away from reality.

Rock Flutist

This is the first character. It’s a rock playing the flute. No, I had not imbibed mushrooms or anything trippy like that. The sound of trickling water just played tricks on my mind, and so I painted what came to mind. And there it is.

The Rock Flutist from Madison Wood's Down at the Creek collection. Whimsical, nature inspired art.
Rock Flutist

There are two word possibilities to describe someone who plays a flute. One is flautist, but ‘flutist’, I think, would be more recognizable to people here in the US. Flautist is more commonly used in Europe, kind of like color/colour and gray/grey.

Monsieur Crawfish

Meanwhile, Monsieur Crawfish danced a little jig. Just because it’s nature inspired doesn’t mean it can’t also be whimsical, right? Well, after this one I thought of several other character possibilities. But first, let me show you this one:

Monsieur Crawfish dances a little jig in Madison Wood's Down at the Creek collection of nature-inspired art.
Monsieur Crawfish

Sal (short for Sally) the Grumpy Salamander

This is the largest one so far, at 9 x 12″. When I’m done creating all of the little mini-scenes, I have a very large 300# paper to move up to. I want to make a compilation painting. This last one will be one large scene that encompasses all of the smaller ones. It’ll be unlike anything I’ve ever tried to paint before, so it’s both scary and intriguing at the same time.

Sally the salamander
Sally, Just Chillin’ is 9 x 12″

Check back later for more nature inspired art!

When I’m done creating the characters, I’ll start on the large compilation painting.

Thanks for following along!

If you would like to help Madison get more easily found by others, leave her a Google review by clicking HERE. Thank you in advance!

Image for Wild Ozark's website front page.

2 thoughts on “Nature Inspired Art | A New Collection”

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  1. Thank you! Happy Fourth to y’all 🎉 And Rob said many thank you’s too 🇺🇸 It’s been so hot and too dry so I hope there aren’t many fireworks around tonight.

  2. What fun, Madison! You’re getting better and better. Happy Fourth to you both and thanks to Rob for his service and his part in keeping those freedoms we value (or some of us do.)

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