Thursday, May 27, 2010


Landcare II 2006 by James Blackwell. See Flickr photostream here. Website, here.

The streets where I live are lined with Oak trees, Sausagetrees and Lucky Bean Trees (Erythrina). These trees bear some of my favourite seeds and pods. As a child I was always thrilled to find lucky beans and acorns, and since we moved to this area I've been intrigued by the Sausagetree pods that hang from the trees by long stalks.

Earthwork. Mixed media, seeds and sand on board by James Blackwell. See enlarged here.

I've found many beautiful artworks on the internet, inspired by an intriguing variety of seed pods in all shapes and sizes. It's not only the shapes and texture of these pods that draw me but it's also the thought that within each seed lies the power to grow into something great whether its a delicate wild flower , a magnificent oak tree..... or the seed of an idea developing within the mind of the artist .

As Ralph Waldo Emerson quoted "The creation of a thousand forests is in one acorn."

Like sea shells and pebbles, seed pods also find their way into pockets to be brought home from walks. I should imagine Australian artist, James Blackwell, comes home with pockets overflowing with nature's treasures.

Pod Cluster, paper mache by James Blackwell. See Blog here.

"The artwork I create centres on the themes of nature, silence, structure and meditation. They are sourced from the investigation of the minutiae of nature of life and the surprising forms that can grow from it." - James Blackwell

The Peanutty Book by Megha Panater

One of the many things I admire about Megha Punater, besides her art, photographs and blog, is the whimsical way she teaches her children about the natural wonders of the world. Look at this delightful little book she has made out of peanut shells. See the Peanutty Book here.There is also the Walnutty Book here which Megha created to answer her children's many questions about the goodness of walnuts. It needs to be seen!

Australian native seeds from Western Australia by Sophie Munns

Another Australian artist, Sophie Munns pays homage to the Seed in a year long artist-in-residence program at the Brisbane Botanic Gardens. Visit Sophie's Homage to the Seed blog, here and her other blog here where you can see photos of her exhibition opening. Definitely an exhibition I would have enjoyed! Sophie's blogs are filled with exquisite drawings, journal pages, paintings, botanical notes and ponderings, showing wondrous appreciation and total immersion in everything seedy ..... well you know what I mean! A big thank you to Sophie for the good work she does raising awareness of the importance of seed conservation.

Pod Forms. Acrylic and pigmented ink on linen by Sophie Munns.

Seedpods and Skull by Jo Chesterman. See more of Jo's work here.

Poppy Pods at the Gloustershire Museum. Photo taken by sandlings on Flickr. See sandlings photostream here.

Seed Pod by Tom Hare at Kew Gardens. Photos by Leo Reynolds. See Leo's Flickr photostream here. See more of Tom's fantastic willow sculptures here.

Regeneration by Jan Hopkins at the Jane Sauer Gallery, here.

Pod-like ceramic objects by by Ann Decker. See more of Ann's work here.

Burnished and bisque fired ceramic seed pod by Rafael Navarro. See more of Rafael's work here.

Brooch by Sarah Parker-Eaton. See more here.

Seedpods. Photograph by Roger Ballen. See more of Roger's sometimes (most times) disquiting photos here.

Omo Tribe, body paint and decorations. Photo by Hans Silvester. Blog post here.

"Despite its primitive smallness a seed is an energy centre charged to the highest degree .... each seed is the spin off of a certain species and a talisman for the regeneration of that species." - Paul Klee

Jala mentioned the book SEEDS by Rob Kessler. The photography is out of this world!

Monday, May 17, 2010


Since Seth's last few posts have revolved around the book True Colors , I've been pondering over my own true colours and what they mean to me.

Rich earthy, spicy, colours ...... ochre, rust and kaki green....

Sacks of spices. Photograph from Paint by Elizabeth Hilliard and Stafford Cliff

Warm terracottas ....

Terracotta garden pots. Photo from Paint by Elizabeth Hilliard and Stafford Cliff

Detail from my Creation Myth Panels. See more HERE.

The faded, scorched earth colours of the Sahara....

Mask detail from the book African Vision

Tribal colours contrasting with black and white ......

....the colours of pebbles and driftwood,

rusted metal and patinaed wood....

the colours of Africa .......

..... and a touch of delicate china blue.

Wednesday, May 12, 2010


What's this all about then?

She spends hours tinkering with that junk and it doesn't even smell good!

Much ado about nothing, if you ask me.

I'm not wasting another second of this glorious Autumn day .....

..... zzzzzzzzzzzzz

Monday, May 10, 2010


Photos by Lyn Hughes, found on the blog Sri threads.

Donna Watson introduced me to Boro textiles and I've been in love with them ever since. I won't wax lyrical about these extraordinary pieces since I don't know enough about them to do so but I would love to decorate my blog with them today..... just because they are so beautiful.

Boro is the word used for patched or mended textiles of old Japan.

I found these stunning photographs on the blog Sri threads. Sri is a textile gallery in Brooklyn, New York, specializing in antique Japanese folk textiles.

Stitched and re-inforced layers of recycled cloth.

Antique book of weaving samples.

Photographer, Lyn Hughes has a website, here, where you can see more of her work. See her interiors below.

Donna Watson's painted collages are as beautiful as these Boro pieces. Have a look at her website, here. Oh, and by the way, a little birdie told me that Donna's work looks absolutely fabulous in the book, Masters: Collage: Major Works by Leading Artists. Soon to be released! It's on my Kalahari wish list!

Come together by Donna Watson

Boro Owls ?!

The line up b y Anne Wood. Ann's blog, here. Shop, here.

Friday, May 7, 2010


My daughter enjoying the view on top of the Sphinx.

Most people have one or two special places that feed the soul and the Drakensberg mountains of KwaZulu Natal is "my" place. This is where I feel most at peace......balanced.... and inspired.

We have just spent three blissful days at Champagne Castle, one of the most beautiful parts of the Drakensberg and though I could always do with a little more time away I am feeling rejuvenated.

Every day was perfect. 
Long walks along paths scattered with pine needles, 
wending our way up through the forests ....

across streams.....

stopping periodically to drink the purest crystal clear water.....

photographing all manner of mushrooms and funghi ....

.... out of the forest to push through waist high grass and wild flowers

Wild dagga, leonotis leonorus. Read more here.

marveling over the Bushman paintings that we have seen many times before but never tire of seeing again.

Still climbing ....... the clouds come and go.

Lucky enough to see a mountain rescue exercise .....

The noise was deafening for a while but silence soon returned,
broken only by the bark of a baboon and a sudden swish of grass as a
grey Duiker burst from cover.

On top of the world at last. Well, almost :-)

Back to the hotel in time for tea

....and a little retail therapy at a roadside stall.

"It is an act of worship to sit and look at high mountains." - Sir Edmund Hillary