Friday, March 11, 2011

This year for National Tree Week, why not let the trees do some art!!!

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So it's National Tree Week again here in Ireland! Last year in my post Grow our own chairs for national tree week, I instructed ye all to go and create some art by growing a chair out of trees. (I have yet to hear from ye how that went). So this year, why not let the trees themselves make some art!
Picture from last years post 'Grow our own chairs for national tree week'

This is precisely what British artist Tim Knowles did back in 2005 when he started his series of art pieces, simply called ‘Tree Drawings’ Tim’s idea was to create a series of drawings produced using drawing implements attached to the tips of tree branches, the wind’s effects on the tree is then recorded on paper.  Like signatures, each drawing reveals the different qualities and characteristics of each tree.

All of his works rely on the logic of cause and effect, as a map of time and a record of actions governed entirely by chance.
Tree Drawing - Weeping Willow on circular panel [100 pen] 2005
Above, 100 pens attached to the branches of a Weeping Willow tree draw onto a circular disc 5.1 metres in diameter and made up of 10 segments.
Larch on Easel #1 2006

Scots Pine on Easel #1 2006

Similar projects by Knowles include his Vehicle Motion Drawings, where he constructed an apparatus to capture the motion of a car being driven, all the turns, stops, and starts of the vehicle move the pen over the paper. Another is  his postal projects, which capture the motion of packages sent through the postal system, using both drawings and photography.
Greek Pine on easel #1 2005

I think my favorite work of his is titled ‘Nightwalk - Valley of Rocks’.  
Nightwalks are a series of illuminated walks that Knowles created in the countryside during a new moon (to ensure complete darkness).
One of Tim Knowles contraptions
Over the period of an hour, the artist walked away from the camera while carrying three wide-beam torches fitted with diffusers. The lights are connected to a 12volt battery in a backpack to prolong their life. His path, along a precarious rocky ridge in the darkness, was illuminated and captured using a long-exposure, large-format photograph. The direction in many of his walks are also dictated by the wind by using various contraptions that plot the direction of the wind.
Nightwalk - Valley of Rocks 2008
Photos and info from Tim Knowles website. Be sure to check it out to see more of his amazing work

So it's still National Tree Week for a few days and there are still a number of events on this weekend right around the country. To find out what in happening in your area, follow the tree council of Ireland link

2011 also happens to be the International Year Of The Forest. You can find out more about this here


  1. Intriguing idea - I also like the "grow your own chair" project - I wonder if a living hammock or bed is possible, for sleeping under the stars of course ...

  2. I don't understand how the nightwalk photo was achieved but it draws one in and the colours are absorbing too.


  3. Fantastic!!! :)
    Congrulations for your blog,I like :)

  4. The Nightwalk photograph is amazing! Also, I really want one of those tree chairs! I'm going to check out the instructions!

  5. I love how you keep us informed of the really weird things going on in the art world related to nature and plants. Not sure I would hang one of the tree drawings on the wall but it's an interesting concept.

  6. Like your art projects with the trees. I do have a chair made out of driftwood from my beach. It was placed here on the property before I even build the house. A place to sit and take in the beauty of the Lake. Now it is in one of the lower gardens. A nice memory of the first days of the gardens and my work here. Jack

  7. The tree drawings are interesting, but honestly, if I could capture the shadows created by the larch or the Greek pine that are cast across the canvas in those photographs, I'd love to hang it on a wall!

  8. the tree paintings are awesome... such a great idea.

  9. Sounds like a great idea of making a chair with a tree and getting more way to your own growth. Fantastic.Saludos.

  10. Yay...I loved this inspiring..gorgeous art! I love all your posts! and your brother's band.. how cool is that!
    Thanks for all the links!

  11. He,Fantstic,Beauty ect.....
    Congrulations your blog