By Michelle Grima – Wild Valley Art Park
Wild Valley Art Park in the Blue Mountains has just launched a unique creative journey, Australia’s first drawing festival and Sketchbook Trail Competition.
The inaugural 10-day Draw on the Mountain festival, between 20-29 September 2013, features workshops and master classes with leading Australian and local artists at the Wentworth Falls eco arts village.
The festival’s program features the self-drive Sketchbook Trail Competition, capturing World Heritage backdrops, iconic tourist attractions and less known natural treasures in the Blue Mountains.
The trail, by car or public transport and the Blue Mountain’s Explorer Bus, incorporates the Norman Lindsay Gallery and gardens, Wentworth Falls Lake and Lookout, Lawson Waterfalls, Scenic World, and the Blue Mountains Cultural Centre.
The Sketchbook Trail culminates an exhibition of the artworks at Wild Valley Art Park, where artworks will be judged for a major $5000 acquisitive prize, as well as awards for enthusiasts and children’s categories.
Wild Valley Art Park owner and Festival Director, Selena Seifert, said the Draw on the Mountain festival was inspired by her experience in the Brooklyn Art Library in New York’s Sketchbook Project where participants from around the world contribute to traveling library collection of handmade books.
“My aim is to provide participants with an incentive to leave their technology behind and pick up a pencil or pen and doodle, draw or experiment in their sketchbooks with unique Blue Mountains locations as their inspiration,” she said.
The major Drawing Festival features workshops and master classes hosted by artists including one of Australia’s most respected oil painters, Lucy Culliton, Wedderburns artist David Fairbairn and Suzanne Archer, Byron Bay’s Liz Powell, and local artists Michael Herron and Michiyo Miwa.
- ‘Distorted Point of View’ master class with David Fairbain. Dynamic works of linear, lines and structure by looking beneath the surface of the human body.
- ‘Exploring the Garden’s individual tuition at Norman Lindsay’s property with award winning artist, Lucy Culliton
- ’Plant Paper, Print’ masterclass by Liz Powell using the natural surrounding of Wild Valley to source plants and materials to explore and create with. Students will incorporate these into making paper and creating their own prints on the printing press.
- Adult & Child Rainforest Sketching Workshop including a ride on the new Scenic Railway and a tour and sketching experience of the rainforest with Blue Mountains artist, Michael Herron.
- The festival will culminate in an exhibition of the sketchbook drawing trail entries with works judged for a major $5000 acquisitive prize, as well as awards for enthusiasts and children’s categories.
The idyllic natural setting at Wild Valley Art Park, one of the locations on the drawing trail map, is inspiring artists from around the world for resident placements, events, yoga and workshops. The former Planet Ark headquarters also has a cottage for guests wanting a peaceful bush escape.
The Draw on the Mountain Sketchbook Trail Competition costs $45 for adults and $20 for children under 16 years.
To register for the trail or workshops, visit www.drawonthemountain.com.au or contact Wild Valley Art Park owner and Festival Director Selena Seifert on 02 4757 4791.
Holiday packages and accommodation are available through Whispering Pines at www.whisperingpines.com.au