Posts Tagged ‘leaves’

roadway leaf stencil

August 23, 2009


This image was taken on a pedestrian crossing in central Canberra.  A leaf must have been lying in the roadway when the markings for the pedestrian crossing were sprayed on.  Of course the paint stuck to the leaf and not the roadway, and now this durable stencil is left, so no matter the season, there is always at least one autumn leaf on the ground!

leaf circles

May 29, 2009

I’ve been unable to resist doing some leaf works lately, and they have all been circles.  A circle marks a spot, and it also creates an inside and an outside, like a Venn diagram, but with only one set.  I’m not sure yet what this means in terms of why I am making leaf circles, but I am sure it is relevent somehow!  The occupation of space perhaps.




I wanted to use the white leaves (pubescent undersides) because I was a little bit perplexed as to why only some of the leaves were white underneath, only about 10% or less.  They all came from the same tree.  While the whiteness does wear off over time after the leaves have fallen, but this is only a partial explanation, since even when looking at just the ‘freasher’ yellow leaves, most are smooth underneath (and therefore not white).



This last one is only a half circle of course, but conceptually continues beyond the paving to circle the large tree on the left where the leaves came from.  I did it early in the morning at school.  The day remained fairly calm so the circle stayed more or less intact, but the centre had more and more new leaves fall onto it, obscuring the distinction between the inside and the outside over time.

black and white

January 3, 2009


What wonderful contrast between the leaf (underside) and trunk of a Silver Poplar. Not just the colour either – solidity/fragility – fleeting/long lasting – rough/soft.


I like this shot from further back too. The white on the tree is so “un-naturaly” bright it almost ceases to be a leaf and becomes an enigmatic sign – the symbol of a leaf rather than a leaf itself.

drawing on leaves

January 2, 2009


There are a lot of Tasmanian Blue Gums planted around Canberra.  Many of them have been under stress in recent years due to the ongoing below average rainfall and in some cases direct impact of fire.  Anyway this has caused many to produce new shoots from the base that bear leaves in the juvenile form – broader and when new, covered with a white waxy coating.  This coating is easily scratched into, allowing a drawing to be made.  The whiteness doesn’t seem to grow back – this leaf looked just the same a week later.  I wonder if any permanent mark will be left as the leaf matures and the rest of the wax is removed by the elements.

holiday lazyness

December 31, 2008

The blog has been a bit inactive lately I know – holiday lazyness. I have still been doing the occasional out and about figure, though I am starting to feel like that project isn’t really going anywhere new so I probably will not be doing so many in the future, though I expect they will still pop up now and then. Well I’ll try to get back into some regular posting for the new year and there are some ideas simmering for new projects. In the meantime here’s a figure from a couple of weeks back.


These are leaves from a pink flowering Iron Bark – in fact these recently fallen leaves are a pretty good match to the colour of the flowers.

gutter treasure

November 23, 2008


Not quite sure why I am photographing an ever  increasing range of litter and rubbish at the moment but there you go.  Apparently it is considered a suspicious activity these days though – a police paddy wagon went by a few times that afternoon before stopping to question my friend and I over what we were up to – going for a walk through your own neighborhood and taking photos of things on the ground being so subversive and all.

into the studio – and back out again

October 23, 2008

Leaves featured pretty heavilly in my ephemeral work durring autumn, but have been featuring less frequently lately. They have, however, been making their way into the studio more and more. Leaves have been getting drawn, drawn on, printed on, and printed with!

And then after that they sometimes make their way back out of the studio again – altered, yet still simple leaves, taken back to the source.

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 out and about in Sydney

August 5, 2008

I was up in Sydney to check out some more offerings from the Biennale, but found some time to do some art out and about while I was there.  Perhaps I was inspired into action by the graffiti-like chalk works of Dan Perjovschi, which fill the voids on the facade of the Art Gallery of NSW, where long ago envisaged bas reliefs never came to completion.  Not a lot of intact autumn leaves were left blowing about to trace, but there were a few, including these couple.

I continued tracing and filling the shape of the odd leaf here and there as I walked through town.  I didn’t get the impression that any of the many passers by were paying the slightest attention to me or the drawings.  Perhaps Sydney people are too busy for that – or they have just trained themselves not to make any eye contact with nutters on the street! I did a whole collection of white leaf tracings further down near Circular Quay, but it was getting a bit dark for photography by then.  Passed by again two days later, but the area had been swept and cleaned.  A faint trace of the chalk remained – but none of the leaves or rubbish.  Thus is the nature of ephemeral work.  The red tracings were still quite prominent though – they had been drawn on wet pavement so had a good dense covering of chalk.

Meanwhile a little re-arranging of fallen male cones, in this case from a Queensland Kauri Pine (Agathis robusta) in the Domain.  Not entirely sure what this type of work is about yet, maybe nothing more than delighting in the grub-like shape of these little objects.

shadow drawings

July 31, 2008

Did some shadow tracings in chalk today.  Firstly the bare branches of an oak tree on the curved wall on University Ave.  It was sunny and warmish today so I began to think of the arrival of spring and added some nice green leaves.  A playful fond memory here in the middle of winter.

Followed by a tracing of the shadows of the main trunk and branches on the ground.  With both of these works and with other shadow tracings I have done before, it is always surprising just how quickly the shadows move.  By the time the drawing is finished the first parts are already way out of alignment, so the drawing can never perfectly replicate the shape of the shadow at any one time.  Then of course there are clouds.  An annoyance when the shadow disappears and thus interrupts the drawing time, but great for photographing the finished work with the “source” now removed.

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