Posts Tagged ‘flowers’

lace bark

January 3, 2013



Walking in Conondale National Park recently, one of the many delights to be seen was the large flowers of Lacebark (Brachychiton discolour) trees, scattered on the forest floor.  Lacebark are a large rainforest tree which at this time of year, along with their better known cousins the Flame Tree, are almost leafless but covered in spectacular flower.  Being usually very tall and often emergent from the top of the canopy, it is quite difficult to see the flowers looking up into the tree, but they make an impressive display on the ground when they drop anyway.  The underside of the flower was particularly inspiring with the contrasting dark and light pink, so a little ephemeral land art was in order.



A little later there was an even more spectacular carpeting of flowers beneath one of these forest giants, but it was time to push on with the days walk towards a swim at ‘Artist’s Cascades’.




collections and collecting

November 3, 2012

Detail from ‘Sections of Life’, Artists’ Book, Peter McLean, 2009


I’m happy to report that the State Library of Queensland has recently purchased two of my artists’ books to add to their collection.  The library has an extensive collection of artists’ books, all searchable in their online catalogue and available to be viewed on request.  The books added to the collection were “Sections of Life; Black Mountain” which includes a sequence of relief prints taken from a small animal jawbone, and “Drooping Sheoak”, which is a sequence of prints from sections through a Casuarina seed pod.  Both were made in my Canberra days, one associated with walking and camping on Black Mountain, the other Mt Ainslie. The Library also has a copy of the broadside ‘Sky’ which I made with Ampersand Duck.

Meanwhile, I’m currently involved in collecting of a very different kind.  I have joined a crew of professional seed collectors, and we have been working in State Forests in norther NSW, collecting native seed to be used in landscape restoration projects and the like.  We’ve been working hard, and I’ve had little extra time or energy for drawing, but I’ve been taking a lot of photo’s of the processes along the way, to transform clippings from some bushes growing in the forest, into bags of pure seed.  We’re not there yet, and the final stages will be done back at ‘HQ’, but we are working our way through a lot of material.



pussy willow

November 4, 2010

Bowral’s first taste of art out and about, on cherry tree walk.

hibiscus man

February 23, 2010

My ephemeral silhouette project, which was the initial impetus behind this art out and about blog, is not something that I do so regularly now, but they do still appear now and then.  This fellow was made in Melbourne’s Domain in January.  They appear to be some kind of Hibiscus flowers, similar to the coast cottonwood.  I don’t know if the flowers usually turn dry before they fall from the tree, or if that was because it had been 43 degrees celsius and dry as a bone the day before.  While temperatures above 40 are not unheard of in Melbourne, the previous night had been the warmest minimum on record at 30.6.

camelia man

April 21, 2009

Been up and down to sydney a bit lately, and doing quite a bit of walking around the city and the eastern suburbs – where this little camelia man materialized.  The question is, why are there so many types of flower that are pink?  Seemed to suit that part of Randwick anyway.


pic of the day

November 10, 2008


down by the river – a fallen poppy petal

more figures out and about

October 20, 2008

One of the interesting finds on a recent walk were these beautifully coloured leaves which had come from a Hardenbergia – a native creeping/climbing plant with purple flowers. It is now a common garden plant but grows naturally in Eucalypt woodlands. Made for a nice little art out and about figure, even if he does look a little like some sort of jointed wooden toy or something. That is what is keeping me interested in these figures really; the way in which each new material brings it’s own qualities to the figure and influences the way in which I use it.

Once I do one figure, it tends to get me into the right unhurried frame of mind and others often follow quickly. That day it was Grevillea and Apple flowers that caught my eye.

art in the willows

October 5, 2008

I’ve been visiting the old pine forest areas along the Melonglo River (I say old because they all got burnt out in the 2003 bushfires so there isn’t really any forest any more, though plantations are being re-established. It’s a nice area to go cycling on the dirt tracks, and poke about and explore the river. Just the sort of socially marginal landscape I enjoy! Along the river is almost exclusively exotic weed trees – mostly willow – many of which survived the fires and in any case are recovering very quickly. If you ignore the ramifications of all this weediness though, they are still lovely trees – especially now with all the spring growth – and will be nice and shady in the summer. The willows were dropping flowers last week.

On the way back I bumped into someone from school of art – she was just heading into the forestry land with her young sister on their bikes. They said they were off for a play in the creek. I said I’d been doing much the same – but since I’m not a kid anymore I photograph what I do and call it art !

grassland flowers

October 5, 2008

Had a bit of a walk in the nearby Aranda Bushland yesterday.  Lots of nice native grassland/woodland flowers out at the moment.  Here are just a couple of them.

Spring in Canberra

September 25, 2008

Spring is well and truly in full swing now – though it almost goes without saying that rainfall is still below average. The Cherry and other blossom trees are the most obvious, but also there seems to be a lot of Eucalypt flowers of various kinds at the moment too. So plenty of material opportunities for art out and about at the moment, if not always the time.

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