Exhibit 2013 Catalogue and Artist Information

Download the print catalogue here.

View the Exhibit 2013 Gallery here.

 

Emily S. Damstra
Jennifer Osborn
Karen Logan
Karen Reczuch
Kathryn Chorney
Kathryn Killackey
Lynette Carrington-Smith
Maayan Harel
Marianne Collins
Nellie Sue Potter
Trish M. Murphy

——

Emily S. Damstra

Emily S. Damstra is a natural science illustrator who draws and paints subjects as small as tiny beetles and microscopic jellyfish to subjects as large as bears and trees and giant squid. Her illustrations can be seen in museums, zoos, and many different publications, including the books Guide to Great Lakes Fishesby Gerald R. Smith (University of Michigan Press 2010) and The Atlantic Coast; A Natural History by Harry Thurston (Greystone Books 2011). Emily has also designed a number of coins fot the Royal Canadian Mint, including the 2012 circulating Lucky Loonie. She has a Master of Fine Arts degree in science illustration and her works have won awards in the juried natural science exhibits of the New York State Museum (Focus on Nature) and the Botanical Artists of Canada. Emily has always lived in the Great Lakes Region, where her enthusiasm for gardening, hiking, and reading fuels her deep appreciation for the local environment.

Member, Guild of Natural Science Illustrators
President, Southern Ontario Nature and Science Illustrators
Member, Botanical Artists of Canada

Email: esdamstra@gmail.com
Website: www.emilydamstra.com   emilydamstra.wordpress.com

 

Emily Damstra

Ruddy Turnstone by Emily S. Damstra

Ruddy Turnstone – breeding plumage
Arenaria interpres
Watercolour and gouache, 2012
$400

The Ruddy Turnstone is a migratory wading bird that breeds in the far north. It roams along rocky shorelines flipping over stones as it probes for food. Shown here is the bird in its breeding plumage; non-breeding adults and juveniles have much duller plumage. I illustrated this bird for interpretive signs at the Smithsonian National Zoological Park in Washington D. C.

 

Emily Damstra

Black Crappie by Emily S. Damstra

Black Crappie
Pomoxis nigromaculatus
Coloured pencils, 2007
$425

This is one of many species I illustrated for the book “A Guide to Great Lakes Fishes” by Gerald R. Smith (University of Michigan Press 2010). Each species has a characteristic number of fin rays and scales, so they must be counted to accurately represent them. Published meristics concerning the dorsal fin, anal fin, and lateral line scales are easy to find for North American freshwater fishes, but some countable traits are not always recorded. I usually examine preserved specimens to determine how many rays are in the pectoral and pelvic fins, for example. Of all of the fishes I illustrated for that book, this illustration is my favourite.

 

Emily Damstra

Longnose Gar by Emily S. Damstra

Longnose Gar
Lepisosteus osseus
Coloured pencils, 2006
$400

This is one of many species I illustrated for the book “A Guide to Great Lakes Fishes” by Gerald R. Smith (University of Michigan Press 2010). This species is sometimes called a “living fossil” because it has survived relatively unchanged for 100 million years. You can find longnose gar in many freshwater bodies in the eastern half of North America. They can reach 200 cm in length but are generally quite a bit smaller than that.

 

Emily Damstra

Sectioned rattle of a Western Diamondback Rattlesnake by Emily S. Damstra

Sectioned rattle of a Western Diamondback Rattlesnake
Crotalus atrox
Gouache, 2006
$300

This illustration of a dissected Diamondback rattle is published in the book “Venomous Snakes: Wild Guide” by Cynthia Berger (Stackpole Books 2007). Rattlesnakes add a segment to their rattle each time they shed their skin, but the most distal segments typically break off over time. In the wild, it is uncommon to find a many-segmented rattle that still has its original tip, or button. I sketched from a preserved specimen with a large incomplete rattle. Then I consulted multiple published references to figure out what the external and internal shapes of a complete rattle would look like.

 

Emily Damstra

Eastern Tiger Swallowtail by Emily S. Damstra

Eastern Tiger Swallowtail (female)
Papilio glaucas
Gouache, 2006
$400

I illustrated this swallowtail, along with several other butterflies, for interpretive signs at the Smithsonian National Zoological Park’s butterfly garden. You can distinguish female tiger swallowtails from males by looking for the band of blue colouration on the hind-wings; this blue is typically absent on males. Some female tiger swallowtails exhibit a very different colouration known as a “dark morph,” where the wings are nearly all black except for the band of blue and the pale spots bordering the wings. This is more common in the Southern USA, where the dark morphs are thought to be mimicking the Pipevine Swallowtail, a species more common in the South.

Return to top

Back to Exhibits

——

Jennifer Osborn

Jennifer Osborn is permaculture artist, farmer and educator. She and her husband live on a small farm just outside of Guelph where she teaches felting using the wool from their sheep to create felt art. She is available for commissions. More of her work can be seen at www.allsortsacre.ca. She can be reached at jjo@allsortsacre.ca or 519-823-9916.

 

American Goldfinch

American Goldfinch by Jennifer Osborn

American Goldfinch
Wool felt, 2013
Not for sale

The delicacy of the American Goldfinch depicted mirrors the techniques and wool used.  The bright yellow streak that bobs across the sky can never fail to be noticed. Their mournful “pee-o-wee” call belies the intense yellow of breeding season and the liveliness of the little bird. Common in most regions of Ontario, some places all year many people can identify  the American Goldfinch. This bird is one of my favourites year-round.

As a shepherd I wanted to explore the option of using wool as an artistic medium in a way that people have done for thousands of years – through felt. Using different types of wool, all of which present an new and exciting challenge. Similar to a traditional media, discovering the qualities of wool, what effects can be created, and the potential of it is exciting. A wet felted piece of fabric that I made was used as a base for the needle felted image.

Return to top

Back to Exhibits

——

Karen Logan

A mother and grandmother, Karen has been interested in art her whole life. Taking private drawing lessons as a child, specializing in art studies through high school and receiving three honors certificates in fine arts from Mohawk College has helped keep art a central component of her life. As a lifelong learner Karen is always looking for new techniques and enjoys the opportunity to try all forms of media. She has worked in pencil, charcoal, pastel, watercolor, encaustic, acrylic, and most recently Chinese Brush Painting as well as ceramics and silver smithing. Originally a mechanical draftsperson, Karen now works part time for two not-for-profit environmental organizations. Although there isn’t much time left each week she still makes time to continue her painting and hopes one day to retire to do it full time. Karen most enjoys painting botanicals, birds and animals in fine detail so has recently joined the Southern Ontario Nature and Science Illustrators.

Phone: 905-664-2837
Email: Kalogan@cogeco.ca

 

Karen Logan

Jack-in-the-pulpit by Karen Logan

Jack-in-the-pulpit
Chinese brush painting on rice paper
2012
Not for sale

 

Karen Logan

Day Lily by Karen Logan

Day Lily
Chinese brush painting on rice paper
2012
Not for sale

 

Karen Logan

Columbine 1 by Karen Logan

Karen Logan

Columbine 2 by Karen Logan

Columbine 1 and Columbine 2
Chinese brush paintings on rice paper
2012
Not for sale

Return to top

Back to Exhibits

——

Karen Reczuch

A graduate of Sheridan College and a professional illustrator for over 30 years, Karen Reczuch has enjoyed a widely varied career. Initially employed in commercial advertising, she worked for two years for a mission in Cote d’Ivoire, West Africa preparing adult literacy materials. On return to Canada, Karen gravitated toward educational publishing and released her first children’s picture book in 1989. She has since illustrated numerous award winning books, including her newest, Loon. Written by Susan Vande Griek and published by Groundwood Books, Loon was named the 2012 winner of the Ruth and Sylvia Schwartz Award and also received the Norma Fleck Award for Non-Fiction in the TD Canadian Children’s Literature Awards. Karen credits her SONSI colleagues for pointing her in the right direction in her researches for the book.

Karen enjoys summer employment with the Oriental Institute of the University of Chicago, working as an artifact illustrator in the south of Turkey. During the rest of the year, she can be found in her home studio in Acton, Ontario, painting, drawing and continuing to learn. Karen enjoys membership in SONSI; the opportunity to associate with so many richly accomplished artists has opened wonderful vistas – a place to feel like a beginner all over again!

Phone: 519-853-5152
Email: kreczuch@sympatico.ca
Website: www.karenreczuch.com

 

Karen Reczuch

High and Dry by Karen Reczuch

High and Dry
Gavia immer
Acrylic on canvas, 2010
$1700

Since my mid-teens the call of a loon always summons, for me, the image of a northern lake. No canoe trip or summer cottage visit is quite authenticated unless the eerie laughter of these distinctive birds echoes across the water. Illustrating the children’s picture book, Loon by Susan Vande Griek  (Groundwood  Books, 2012) allowed me months to learn about these birds and their changing environment, following the transformation of chick to mating adult. Painting in acrylic on canvas allowed me the bold range of colour and texture needed to depict the changing seasons, the dramatic  variation in their iconic plumage and the migratory journey from northern lake to coastal waters and back.

 

Karen Reczuch

Encounter by Karen Reczuch

Encounter
Gavia immer
Acrylic on canvas, 2010
$1700

Although I’ve been familiar with the common loon since canoeing in Algonquin in my teens, I learned a great deal more about this fascinating bird while researching the illustrations for Loon by Susan Vande Griek (Groundwood Books, 2012.) A loon’s nest is a fairly open, haphazard affair so I used a tight focus for this image to convey the intimacy of this first encounter between mother and newly hatched chick.

 

Karen Reczuch

Sunday afternoon by Karen Reczuch

Sunday afternoon
Mandevilla
Watercolour
$400

Although I have admired mandevilla plants in the past, I don’t have the right space to grow one in my own garden. Also known as Brazilian jasmine, the plant is a tropical import that will climb vigorously in Ontario summer gardens, but must be brought indoors in the winter. This past summer I had the luxury of watching dozens of them thrive in the greenhouse where I work part-time, daily studying the intricate twining of the vines and the succession of delicate blooms. This image is from a Sunday afternoon spent in the greenhouse – not working.

Return to top

Back to Exhibits

——

Kathryn Chorney

After earning her Master of Science Master of Science in Biomedical Communications (MScBMC) degree at the University of Toronto in 1998, Kathryn went to work in the medical-legal, pharmaceutical, and patient-education fields as a medical illustrator, animator, and art director, both as a freelancer, and as full-time staffer at Artery Studios Inc in Toronto. She also taught part-time in the Biomedical Communications program at U of T.

In 2004, Kathryn joined the full time Bachelor of Illustration faculty at Sheridan College, where she helped write and develop the new curriculum for the 4-year degree program, focusing on Scientific Illustration. She currently teaches Scientific Illustration as well as Media Studies in the program, which is now known as Bachelor of Illustration.

Kathryn is also a consulting associate at Hall Train Studios Ltd, one of the world’s leading suppliers of original natural history exhibitry, where she has been fortunate to work on a number of projects for leading museums, science centers, and broadcasters.

Phone: 416-251-9787
Email: kathryn.chorney@sheridancollege.ca

 

Bracket Fungus (Ganoderma)

Bracket Fungus by Kathryn Chorney

Bracket Fungus
Ganoderma
Watercolour and ink, 2011
$275 for giclee print

I found this majestic (about 14” diameter) bracket fungus on my sister & brother-in-law’s property in Wellington County, growing on an old tree stump. I completed the composition by referring to a collection of other bracket fungi as well as self-collected references of wild plants and tree textures. Tree fungi such as the Ganoderma are very important to nature, as they break down dead plant material and return the organic nutrients and inorganic elements to the soil to nourish new life. They are also incredibly beautiful life forms.

 

Kathryn Chorney

“Dusk” – Dry Bromeliad Stem by Kathryn Chorney

“Dusk” – Dry Bromeliad Stem
Guzmania lingulata
Watercolour and acrylic, 2012
Purchase info: please contact the artist

This bromeliad, in life, originally belonged to a colleague in our shared office at Sheridan College. The bromeliads, a large and diverse plant group, exhibit brilliantly coloured, showy foliage. When this stem died, I found myself very intrigued by the incredible geometry of the curled-up leaves, and the many subtle shades of colour that remained, so I kept it on my desk in front of the window. Seen against the colours of the sky at dusk, the stem seemed to take on new kind of life, the dry leaves springing upwards in almost a torch-like form. This seemed to hint at how in Nature, life is cyclical and renewable, not a linear progression from beginning to end.

 

Kathryn Chorney

European Beech by Kathryn Chorney

European Beech
Fagus sylvatica
Watercolour and graphite, 2011
Purchase info: please contact the artist

This tree is located on the University of Toronto’s downtown campus, outside Hart House. I have walked by it many times, and became fascinated by the appearance of the trunk – it looks like a collection of multiple smaller trunks fused together, giving the impression of dynamic upward motion, suspended in time. The fine-textured grey bark is a unique identifier of this species; its smooth sheen beautifully reflects the colours of the green canopy and the warm sunlight.

Return to top

Back to Exhibits

——

Kathryn Killackey

I am a freelance science illustrator. I believe that illustration not only transmits known information, it can also uncover new information and theories via a dialog between the artist and researcher. I have a B.A. in Anthropology from University of California, Berkeley, a M.A. in Field and Analytical Techniques in Archaeology from University College London, and a Certificate in Science Illustration from the internationally renown program at California State University, Monterey Bay. My education has given me strong research skills, which I am interested in applying to a range of scientific topics. Each illustration completed adds to my knowledge of the natural world and increases my wonder at the beauty to be found at both the macro and micro levels. I specialize in archaeological illustration and have many years experience as an excavator and archaeobotanist. This experience informs and enriches my artifact illustrations, building reconstructions, and illustrations of past people.

Phone: 289-308-6769
Email: info@killackeyillustration.com
Webpage: www.killackeyillustration.com

 

Killackey_1_Jay

Blue Jay by Kathryn Killackey

Blue Jay
Cyanocitta cristata
Gouache, 2012
$300

I have recently moved to Canada from California. Hamilton is the first place I have lived with such pronounced seasonal changes and I spent last spring delighted by all the birds and flowers that suddenly appeared with the warming weather. The blue jay depicted in this illustration was a frequent visitor to the tree outside my studio window. I was not able to determine if it was male or female as both sexes are similar in size and plumage. The blue jay (Cyanocitta cristata) is native to southern Canada and most of eastern and central United States. It is a member of the family Corvidae.

 

Kathryn Killackey

Giant Pacific Octopus by Kathryn Killackey

Giant Pacific Octopus
Enteroctopus dofleini
Gouache, 2010
$800

The giant pacific octopus (Enteroctopus dofleini) is native to the coastal North Pacific on both the American and Asian sides. It is the largest octopus species recorded. These octopuses eat a variety of crustaceans, bi-valves, and fish and are in turn preyed upon by marine mammals, sharks, and humans. Like other cephalopods, it has the ability to hide from predators by camouflaging itself. It does so with special pigment-containing organs called chromatophores, which allow it to change its skin color to match its surroundings such as the Agarum fimbriatum, a species of brown algae, in the background of this illustration.

 

Kathryn Killackey

Grave goods associated with infant burial 17456 at Çatalhöyük by Kathryn Killackey

Grave goods associated with infant burial 17456 at Çatalhöyük
Gouache and digital imaging, 2011
Not for sale

Çatalhöyük is a 9000-year-old Neolithic archaeological site in Turkey.  The site consists of an early sedentary community that practiced both agriculture and animal husbandry. The people of Çatalhöyük buried their dead under the floors of their houses. Some houses had up to 60 people buried in them. This illustration depicts the grave goods associated with an infant burial excavated in Building 49. It is not possible to tell if it was male or female for only the skeleton remains. The infant was buried wrapped in a reed mat, decorated with bone, shell, and copper beads, and accompanied by Unio sp. shells, basketry, and blue pigment.

Return to top

Back to Exhibits

——

Lynette Carrington-Smith

Lynette was blessed with a childhood in the English countryside where her grandparents established a Nature Reserve. Having qualified as a textile designer she moved to London where she worked for fabric, dress and fashion companies. On relocating to Northamptonshire, Lynette qualified as a tutor for adults in both watercolour painting and botanical illustration and designed for the Greeting Card Market. At the same time she was exhibiting with the Society of Botanical Artists,as an elected member,and at the Royal Horticultural Society in London, where Lynette was awarded three Silver Medals and the coveted Silver Lindley Medal for ‘special scientific and educational merit’.

In 1998 Lynette moved abroad to Catalunya, Spain where she worked on commissions for publication and for private collections, wrote and illustrated a monthly magazine column ‘Nature Trail’, and continued her painting project for a portfolio based on the theme ‘ The Splendours of the Natural World’. During September 2012 Lynette emigrated to Ontario, Canada to join family, and will continue her life long love of painting Nature.

Phone: 905-822-6814, cell 647-382-9646 (after 7 pm)
Website: www.lynettecarringtonsmith.com

 

2012103

DWARF NARCISSI and BRIMSTONE BUTTERFLY by Lynette Carrington-Smith

DWARF NARCISSI and BRIMSTONE BUTTERFLY
Narcissi bulbocodium, N. Triandus albus, N. “Rip Van Winkle”
Watercolour, 2008
$950

Inspired by both the arrival of the Spring Equinox heralding rebirth and colour after Winter’s Chill, and the sight of the glorious dwarf Narcissi growing in an informal setting, instilled within me all the finest qualities of that moment, of the beginning of the year’s growth cycle and of the promise of Summer to come. During the sketching process a Brimstone butterfly (Gonepteryx rhamni) was attracted to the flowers and basked on the stones in the warm sunlight, which led to its inclusion, as did the feather dropped by a passing cock Pheasant (Phasianus colchicuc), both enhancing the pleasure of painting this subject of Spring.

Return to top

Back to Exhibits

——

Maayan Harel

Maayan Harel grew up in both the United States and Israel. She was in the military, backpacked across Asia, and studied Geophysics specializing in Atmospheric Science. Her work as a climate modeler and her lifelong love of art led her to pursue the illustration of science and nature as a career. She has illustrated pieces for academic conferences, the Smithsonian and National Geographic Magazine.

Email: mh@maayanillustration.com
Website: www.maayanillustration.com

 

harel_3_beetle

Flea Beetle sp. by Maayan Harel

Flea Beetle sp.
Coquille board and photoshop (fine art print)
2012
Not for sale

This illustration was done as part of my internship at the Smithsonian’s National Museum of Natural History. It is part of an ongoing study of a family of flea beetles done for the department of entomology. Most of my illustrations were in black and white, but this beetle’s metallic blue wing covers were so beautiful that I felt compelled to colorize it.

 

Mayaan Harel

Mahogany Glider with Clarkson’s Bloodwood laid den by Maayan Harel

Mahogany Glider with Clarkson’s Bloodwood laid den
Petaurus gracilis, Corymbia clarksoniana
Watercolor and gouache (fine art print)
2012
$90

The Mahogany Glider is a very rare species of marsupial first described in 1883. However it went unseen for over a century and was thought to be extinct until it was rediscovered in 1989. This animal is a type of nocturnal gliding possum and is found in Queensland, Australia. It is depicted here with the leaves and flowers of the Clarkson’s Bloodwood since this tree is its preferred home.

 

Mayaan Harel

Artichoke Varieties by Maayan Harel

Artichoke Varieties
Ink and watercolor (fine art print)
2012
$90

Last year I was living near Castroville California, also known as “the artichoke capital of the world”. I’ve always loved these beautiful and delicious thistles and was amazed to discover the wide variety of cultivars, particularly in Italy. This collection includes two cultivated varieties: the classic American green globe, a small local Italian variety: the Moretto Artichoke of Brisighella. I also included a wild type from Sardinia with sharp spikes.

Return to top

Back to Exhibits

——

Marianne Collins

Educated as a biologist at the University of Guelph, Marianne’s first job placement after graduation was with the Ministry of Natural Resources as a biology technician. Explorations into parallel careers as a Wildlife Artist and taxidermy apprentice led her to full time employment and later freelance consulting with Toronto’s Royal Ontario Museum.

Since 1986, Marianne has been intimately involved in exhibit design and the production of science galleries at the Royal Ontario Museum including the popular Bat Cave and the Schadd Gallery of Biodiversity as well as numerous research papers on the extinct Cambrian animals of the famous Burgess Shale fossil quarry. The ROM and Parks Canada have created an online Burgess Shale Virtual Museum at http://burgess-shale.rom.on.ca. The illustrations in this exhibition are all actual samples of this work.

Marianne’s relationship with the Burgess Shale was catapulted by her collaboration with popular science writer, the late Stephen Jay Gould. Dr. Gould engaged her specifically to illustrate his 1989 book, “Wonderful Life“. The worldwide best seller brought the 500 million year old creatures to an international audience.

An avid scuba diver, some of her favourite subjects are those of the undersea world. She uses her scuba skills regularly in the service of science to research illustrations and 3D model replicas for museum exhibits, scientific and popular reference publications and Parks visitor centre education material.

Email: marianne@artoffact.ca

 

Marianne Collins

Priapulid worm – Burgess Shale fossil reconstruction by Marianne Collins

Priapulid worm – Burgess Shale fossil reconstruction
Louisella pedunculata
Digital print, 2011
$50 unframed, $75 framed

Named after Lake Louise, Alberta near the Burgess Shale location, Louisella was a burrowing, carnivorous worm and is the largest fossil priapulid (burrowing marine worms) in the Burgess Shale. It was first thought to be a sea cucumber but was found to have an invertable, toothlined feeding structure (proboscis) for feeding on larger prey animals.

The artwork was created entirely digitally in direct consultation with the ROM scientists, using actual fossils for reference. I made plasticene models to help in visualizing the animals in 3D. Colours are speculative and are based on my scuba diving observations of descendant (if there are any) or modern animals with similar lifestyles.

First published in Burgess Shale Virtual Museum Fossil Gallery. burgess-shale.rom.on.ca

 

Marianne Collins

Laggania – Burgess Shale fossil reconstruction by Marianne Collins

Laggania – Burgess Shale fossil reconstruction
Laggania cambria
Digital print, 2011
$50 unframed, $75 framed

The anomalocaridids (“unlike other shrimps” in english), including Laggania and the related Anomalocaris were once thought to be the same animal. This fossil group, now entirely extinct, has an especially complex history of description because parts of their bodies were preserved in isolation from each other, resulting in the body part fossils being given their own names before they were identified as different parts of the same animal. Then the discovery, by Royal Ontario Museum scientists during fieldwork in the 1990s, of several more complete specimens allowed for a redescription of the animals with greater accuracy and separated them into different species.

The artwork was created entirely digitally in direct consultation with the ROM scientists, using actual fossils for reference. I made plasticene models to help in visualizing the animals in 3D. Colours are speculative and are based on my scuba diving observations of descendant (if there are any) or modern animals with similar lifestyles.

 

Marianne Collins

Hurdia – Burgess Shale fossil reconstruction by Marianne Collins

Hurdia – Burgess Shale fossil reconstruction
Hurdia victoria
Digital print, 2008
$50 unframed, $75 framed

Hurdia (named after Mount Hurd near the Burgess Shale) is an anomalocaridid related to Laggania and Anomalocaris. And like the other members of its group, its body parts were originally found and described separately until ROM scientists discovered a specimen with the piecesattached. The big “head” is a hollow carapace that may have served to funnel and capture food.

The artwork was created entirely digitally in direct consultation with the ROM scientists, using actual fossils for reference. I made plasticene models to help in visualizing the animals in 3D. Colours are speculative and are based on my scuba diving observations of descendant (if there are any) or modern animals with similar lifestyles.

 

Marianne Collins

Orthrozanclus – Burgess Shale fossil reconstruction by Marianne Collins

Orthrozanclus – Burgess Shale fossil reconstruction
Orthrozanclus reburrus
Digital print, 2007
$50 unframed, $75 framed

A relatively newly found fossil species from the Burgess Shale that implies an early evolution of mollusks (snails, squids, octopus), and closely linking them to the origin of annelids (the segmented worms). Its name means “Dawn (as in dawn of time) animal with sickle-like bristling hair”. Orthrozanclus was probably herbivorous and would have crept along the seafloor on a muscular foot like its snail descendants.

The artwork was created entirely digitally in direct consultation with the ROM scientists, using actual fossils for reference. I made plasticene models with paper spines to help in visualizing the animal in 3D. Colours are speculative and are based on my scuba diving observations of descendant (if there are any) or modern animals with similar lifestyles.

 

Marianne Collins

Ctenophore Jellyfish – Burgess Shale fossil reconstruction by Marianne Collins

Ctenophore Jellyfish – Burgess Shale fossil reconstruction
Xanioascus, Ctenorhabdotus, Fasciculus
Digital print, 2011
$50 unframed, $75 framed

Three ctenophore jellyfish from the Burgess Shale. Ctenophores are marine jellyfish commonly known as “comb jellies”. Their most unique features are the rows of comblike cilia they use for swimming. The extinct ctenophores had more comb rows than the modern comb jellies and show no evidence of the long stinging tentacles of modern day species.

The artwork was created entirely digitally in direct consultation with the ROM scientists, using actual fossils for reference. I made plasticene models to help in visualizing the animals in 3D. Colours are speculative and are based on my scuba diving observations of descendant (if there are any) or modern animals with similar lifestyles.

Return to top

Back to Exhibits

——

Nellie Sue Potter

I have a great love and appreciation for the natural world, and my intent is to share this appreciation with others through my artwork. My work experience includes working as a botanical illustrator, teaching art and sculpture to children, and teaching botanical art to adults. My teaching venues in Toronto include the Royal Ontario Museum, High Park and the Toronto Botanical Garden.

My artwork has appeared with the Botanical Artists of Canada in four national exhibitions and in two solo exhibitions in Toronto. From September 2012 until January 2013 an exhibition of my artwork was on display at Toronto City Hall. In 2011, I had the honour of exhibiting artwork at the New York Botanical Garden, as part of their Inaugural International Triennial Botanical Art Exhibition.

I am a member of the Botanical Artists of Canada, the American Society of Botanical Artists and the Southern Ontario Nature and Science Illustrators.

Email: nelliesue@natureartstudio.ca
Website: www.NatureArtStudio.ca

 

Nellie Sue Potter

Jewelweed by Nellie Sue Potter

Jewelweed
Impatiens capensis
Watercolour, 2009
$1200

Jewelweed, Impatiens capensis is native to Toronto and showed up by surprise one year in my back yard. The fine surface texture of its leaves causes water droplets to appear jewel-like, and the entire leaf will sparkle and remain dry if it is submerged. This summer I delighted in watching ruby-throated hummingbirds dart from flower to flower, sipping nectar from the long orange spurs.  Painting the leaf texture and flower structure were interesting challenges. As I concentrated on painting the details, I was frequently startled by exploding seed capsules, which threw seeds in every direction! This habit accounts for the common name “Touch-me-not” and the Latin name Impatiens, meaning impatient.

 

Nellie Sue Potter

White Oak Acorn Sprout by Nellie Sue Potter

White Oak Acorn Sprout
Quercus alba
Watercolour, 2010
$1000

In our native oak savannahs here in Toronto, White Oaks grow among the more numerous Black Oaks. The White Oaks can live about 500 years. Young White Oak leaves are a velvety pink, as shown in my Acorn Sprout painting. I have grown and transplanted many oak seedlings and am amazed by their strength and vitality! Last year I donated 33 oak saplings to the City of Toronto for habitat restoration projects in High Park. The acorn shell was painted with many transparent layers of orange and blue. Its muted, complex colour contrasts sharply with the bright green cotyledons inside.

 

Nellie Sue Potter

Black Oak in Spring by Nellie Sue Potter

Black Oak in Spring
Quercus velutina
Watercolour, 2010
$600

Black Oaks are the predominant tree in Toronto’s Oak Savannahs, and live about 200 years. In the springtime, when the young oak leaves emerge, they seem to fill the oak savannah with a silvery-green-and-pink mist.

In my Black Oak painting, the silvery young leaves show traces of their original crimson, and the golden catkins sway in the breeze. The baby oak leaves are a brilliant crimson colour when they first emerge, and change to a silvery pale green as they grow. At maturity, they will be a handsome, dark, glossy green with bright yellow stems. These bright yellow, even orangey stems remind us that the black oak is a source of yellow dye.

 

Nellie Sue Potter

Cyclamen by Nellie Sue Potter

Cyclamen
Cyclamen sp.
Watercolour, 2006
$500

This Cyclamen brightened many winter days as it sat on my windowsill against a backdrop of snowy backyards in Toronto. As I painted, the cyclamen miraculously unfolded its wonders. Flower buds emerged and stems elongated. Tightly spiraled petals slowly unfurled, and then gently moved through a 180-degree arc to arrive in their reflexed position. I had to paint very quickly as the buds opened because the petals were moving as I painted them! On the same plant, other flowers faded and then matured into seed capsules, each capsule looking like a pearl held in an ornate casing.

 

Red Peppers

Red Pepper Pair by Nellie Sue Potter

Red Pepper Pair
Capsicul annuum
Watercolour, 2010
$500

Red Pepper, Capsicum annuum is native to southern North America and is the most extensively cultivated of the 5 domesticated capsicums. The pepper is a truly gorgeous vegetable, and a challenge to paint. I employed several watercolour techniques: wet-in-wet, transparent colour layering, and drybrush, as I rendered the complex red colours, the shiny skin and the delicate inner membranes.

Return to top

Back to Exhibits

——

Trish M. Murphy

Trish Murphy has been interested in native plants and wild places since she was a small child. She was introduced to botany by her father, RJK Murphy, who was a notable woodsman. Trish is past President of the North American Native Plant Society, has coordinated seed exchanges for NANPS and the Toronto Wildflower Society, and has propagated and planted thousands of wildflowers in diverse naturalization projects.

Trish has exhibited in galleries in Ottawa, Montreal, Toronto, Hamilton, and Elora. She has participated in both previous SONSI exhibits and in the Botanical Artists of Canada’s exhibits since 2009. In January 2012 she had a solo show at Richview Library, devoted to depictions of cultivated orchids.

Member, Botanical Artists of Canada
Exhibit Co-ordinator, Southern Ontario Nature and Science Illustrators
Member, Field Botanists of Ontario

Email: botanicalart@pathcom.com
Website: www.botanicalartstalk.wordpress.com

 

Trish M Murphy

Burico – Wild donkeys, Aruba by Trish M. Murphy

Burico – Wild donkeys, Aruba
Equus africanus asinus
Acrylic, 2013
$300

When donkeys ceased to be the main means of transportation on Aruba, they were turned lose to fend for themselves. During the long, harsh dry seasons on Aruba, the wild donkeys became emaciated and many died. There is now a donkey sanctuary, a popular tourist attraction, that cares for weak and elderly donkeys.

The two donkeys depicted here are part of the remaining free-living herd. Although the island becomes green in the rainy season, a close look at the vegetation shows how many of the plants are either very thorny or toxic, a situation that is becoming progressively worse due to over-grazing by feral goats. The donkey mares have their heads down, taking in as many calories as is equinely possible, and pay scant attention to the tourists.

This work is a study for a larger painting, an Aruban landscape, with a herd of donkeys in the foreground.

 

Bloodroot, Elora Gorge

Bloodroot, Elora Gorge by Trish M. Murphy

Bloodroot, Elora Gorge
Sanguinaria canadensis
Water soluble pastel, 2011
$1000

Bloodroot is one of our earliest woodland wildflowers. The shining, pure white flowers open very briefly – some years they will open and shed their petals on the same warm afternoon. The interestingly shaped leaves last throughout the growing season. The seeds of bloodroot are distributed by ants. Each seed has a little ant snack which the ants will bring back to the colony. Ant middens then provide  good growing media for the seeds.

During the past year I have been exploring new media, as a change from the coloured pencil with which I had been working for a few years. Water soluble pastels are not that different from water soluble coloured pencils, but they do require some adaptations.

 

Trish M Murphy

Dicentra cucullaria, D. canadensis, Adlumia fungosa by Trish M. Murphy

Dicentra cucullaria, D. canadensis, Adlumia fungosa
Watercolour on Aquabord™, 2012
Not for sale

This small painting depicts the three closely-related wild “bleeding hearts” that can be found in the woods of southern Ontario. The commonest is Dutchman’s breeches (Dicentra cucullaria) (bottom) whose flowers were thought to resemble pantaloons hung upside down. Very similar in appearance is squirrel corn (D. canadensis) (left) with flowers resembling in shape those of the garden flower bleeding heart. Both of these flowers bloom in early spring on small plants of finely dissected bluish green foliage. The plants quickly set seed and then disappear as the trees leaf out, to spend the summer as small underground tubers.

Related, but in separate genus, is the Alleghany fringe (Adlumia fungosa) (top) which is a delicate biennial herbaceous vine.  It spends its first year as a mound of finely cut foliage, similar in appearance to the spring foliage of the Dicentras, and then expands into a vine and flowers in its second and last year. Alleghany fringe is much less common, only found in sites of cool, rich soil in relatively undisturbed woods.

I thought it would be interesting to do a watercolour of very delicate flowers and not need to put it behind glass, which is possible on the proprietary stratum Aquabord. I found the board to be less absorbent than paper and thus a bit challenging to work with.

 

Trish M Murphy

Dutchman’s Breeches by Trish M. Murphy

Dutchman’s Breeches
Dicentra cucullaria
Coloured pencil, 2012
$400

This is the same flower as the one in the little watercolour, here showing its very pretty foliage. Dutchman’s breeches are spring ephemerals – they bloom in woods in early spring and then disappear as the forest canopy closes and the forest floor becomes shaded. Other spring ephemerals are: trout lilies, spring cress, Virginia bluebells, spring beauties, and toothworts.

Return to top

Back to Exhibits

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s