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by Arillyn Moran-Lawrence, posted by Deb Shaw

After choosing where you are going, find out what gardens are available to you. Choose at least three and label them:

  • Rugged (but wonderful),
  • Perfect (or almost),
  • Problematic.
Etlingera elatior, aka Pink torch ginger. Waimea Valley Botanical Gardens, Ginger and Heliconia Gardens, North Shore, Oahu. HI. Photographer: Arillyn Moran-Lawrence, © 2017.

Etlingera elatior, aka Pink torch ginger. Waimea Valley Botanical Gardens, Ginger and Heliconia Gardens, North Shore, Oahu. HI. Photographer: Arillyn Moran-Lawrence, © 2017.

I began studying endangered plants in Hawaii, when the ASBA Exhibition Losing Paradise?  was announced. I had three to four gardens I wanted to visit. One was the Lyon Arboretum, on the South Shore of Oahu, in the Rain Forest; Waimea Gardens on the North Shore of Oahu; and, Koko Head to the east of Honolulu. Ho’omaluhia on the East side of Oahu did not have endangered plants so I did not consider that garden in my plan. I also did not consider the small garden in Wahiawa nor several other gardens in downtown Honolulu. I focused on the three larger gardens.

I called the three major gardens ahead of my visit and contacted knowledgeable people with whom I made appointments. At the Lyon Arboretum I contacted Karen Shigematsu, Botanist. At Waimea I made an appointment with David Orr, Botanical Specialist. At Koko Head there was no botanist or specialist available. You are on your own with just the information on the plant labels in the specialized gardens.

These are three different gardens with three different personalities. This is true of all gardens all over the world. You can visit each of these three and decide on which one best delivers what you are looking for.

Rugged Garden Lyon, The Lyon Arboretum

This garden is very large and stunning as you walk out the backdoor of the Administration Building. It is rugged, however. Mosquitos and bugs like to bite you. Karen Shigematsu first showed me the nursery and then introduced me to the garden. The first garden has numerous plants to choose from. However, as you go deeper into the garden on the way to the falls you will find you need strong boots, a rain poncho, an umbrella and a map of the garden. Keep in mind that your cell phone may be blocked by the high mountains that surround the Lyon. If you have health issues you may want to check with the Administration Staff on the ability to make it to the falls and visiting the gardens along the way. There is a less difficult path close in area, to which they will direct you.

A back pack is the best way to carry items you will need to record plants of interest. Make it light as the trails are full of rocks and the heat or rain may wear you out. Rolling gear is only good in about a quarter of the Arboretum. There is no shuttle service, no food stands, and the toilets are in the Administration Building. You can buy t-shirts, books and more, in the Administration Building.

The Perfect Garden, Waimea

Arillyn Moran-Lawrence working on Stelechocarpus burahol, aka the Keppel Tree, while sitting on the steps in the Waimea Valley Botanical Gardens, Malesia Gardens, North Shore, Oahu, HI. Photographer: Michael Tyau, © 2017.

Arillyn Moran-Lawrence working on Stelechocarpus burahol, aka the Keppel Tree, while sitting on the steps in the Waimea Valley Botanical Gardens, Malesia Gardens, North Shore, Oahu, HI. Photographer: Michael Tyau, © 2017.

Waimea Gardens on the North Shore of Oahu is an example of the Perfect Garden. It has a retail shop, an outdoor restaurant, bathrooms, a shuttle to carry you to the waterfall for a swim, and gardens galore. All are scattered over this treasure of a garden on a paved trail with shuttles. The only problem is that the garden is in a valley and the cell phones do not work there.

David Orr, Botanical Specialist met me with a golf cart so we could cover a large area. He explained a great deal about the endangered plants and why so many are on the Red Lists. Hawaii has the most endangered place in the world, including animals, birds, insects and plants.

Ask if a guide is available to meet you on a special day, date and time. Carry bug spray, go in long sleeved t-shirts and long pants if you do not do well with bugs. Otherwise dress however you want. Any kind of shoes work in this garden. Have your small camera, iPad or cell phone with you. Carry a hand held battery charger with you as the gardens are superb and you will want many photos. If you find the perfect plant and don’t want to stand or sit on a rock go to WalMart and buy a cheap collapsible chair. You can always donate it and leave it behind when you fly home. Also, if you choose where you want to paint first and last you can then work on getting to the falls area and catch a ride back to the shop and restaurant area. One way is $5 and round trip is $10. There also are family rates available.

The Problematic Garden, Koko Head

Koko Head is an old volcano that is dormant. There is just the garden there and a gardner that is invisible. The last time I was at Koko Head you checked in with a man at a table at the entrance and you checked out when you left. There was no indication that any kind of help was available. I don’t know if the cell phone works well or at all at KoKo Head.

It is a long, hot dusty walk to the Hawaiian section, which is at the farthest point in the garden. Tackle this garden aggressively, but travel light. A small backpack with sketch pad, watercolor pencils and a water brush would be adequate. Be sure to take a bottle of water for you and your assistant. When you finally arrive at the Hawaiian Section, find your specimen, photograph your choices, and sketch and make color swatches. You can make notes about the plant from the ID labels that are below the plant. A red ID tag means the plant is endangered; a green/blue ID tag means it is not. Photograph the label so you have the information you need later.

The last time I was at Koko Head the garden was very young. I am sure you will find some nice growth there now. It is difficult to get to the plants at Koko Head, and there is no one to assist you. It would be difficult to work there alone. I fell down a small hillside in very soft dirt about 25 feet. I guess I could have been hurt but I wasn’t. However, a sprained ankle would have made it hard to walk a long way to your car.

Materials

  • Small camera, cell phone, iPad, small portable charger.
  • Sketch book, such as a Bee or Stillman & Birn, Mixed Media (both can accept watercolor).
  • Paper, 8-1/2 x 11 or smaller. Arches or Fabriano 300 lb watercolor paper can be bound into a book at Fed Ex or at an office supply store. These can be used for plein air studies in the field or in your hotel room/with photos from your iPad or cell phone.
  • Ruler, tape measure, water bottle, water brushes and three to four good watercolor brushes.
  • Pens that have their own ink supply (such as Copic, Zig or Micron).
  • Mechanical pencil.
  • Small travel palette. Know the paint that you have in the palette. You can always shop for more paint at your destination. I have two great art supply stores that I go to in Honolulu.
  • I have tried colored pencils. I find they break and you need a good sharpener. I like watercolor pencils because you can translate that color to real watercolor paint.
  • Tombow markers with brushes. They are very strong colors but I have found them to be fun to do quick sketches and to work with on the plane. They don’t cause any problems. I carry 12 – 15 in a plastic box.
  • A small folding chair. These can be found at Wal-Mart, Rite Aid, Daiso, sporting/camping stores, any variety stores, or online.
  • Lightweight backpack. They sell some very nice lightweight backpacks in Honolulu. I bought a large one and a small-sized one made by Hawaii Island Spirit. I see them for sale in many places. If you plan on doing rugged hiking bring your own.

Things to Remember

It is not easy to work in a new environment with no desk, chairs, lighting or bathrooms. It is difficult to balance everything like paint, brush, water and paper when you are outside and the nearest place to put anything is the ground.

It also is dark in some gardens, and is hard to find what you are looking for if you have been directed to a particular plant. It can be wet and muddy.

Alpinia zerumbet. Shell ginger. Lyon Arboretum, Manoa Valley, Honolulu, HI. Photographer: Arillyn Moran-Lawrence, © 2017.

Alpinia zerumbet. Shell ginger. Lyon Arboretum, Manoa Valley, Honolulu, HI. Photographer: Arillyn Moran-Lawrence, © 2017.

You need a lot of things to make life productive so make sure you test things at home to see if they work for you. Get overly organized. Keep things light and manageable. If you have a collapsible chair, that is an advantage. If not, see if someone can lend you a TALL bucket.

Having someone to help you is advisable. You can always contact an Art Academy or High School and see if they have a list of students who want to make some extra money. Pay them well so that they will want to really assist you.

by Arillyn Moran-Lawrence, posted by Deb Shaw

Website for "Ko; An Ethnobotanical Guide to Hawaiian Sugarcane Varieties," by Noa Kekuewa Lincoln, PhD., © 2016, University of Hawai'i, Manoa, all rights reserved.

Website for “Ko; An Ethnobotanical Guide to Hawaiian Sugarcane Varieties,” by Noa Kekuewa Lincoln, PhD., © 2016, University of Hawai’i, Manoa, all rights reserved.

Arillyn Moran-Lawrence, will have a pen and ink drawing of Hawaiian Sugar Cane in the forthcoming book Ko; An Ethnobotanical Guide to Hawaiian Sugarcane Varieties. The book will be published by University of Hawaii Press, a nonprofit scholarly publisher.

The author is Noa Kekuewa Lincoln, PhD, Assistant Professor at the University of Hawai’i, Manoa.

About the author of “Ko; An Ethnobotanical Guide to Hawaiian Sugarcane Varieties”
Dr. Noa Kekuewa Lincoln is of native Hawaiian, German, and Japanese decent, born in Kealakekua on Hawai‘i Island. He received his BS in Environmental Engineering from Yale University, and his PhD in Environment and Resources from Stanford University, where his work focused on traditional agricultural development pathways and management strategies. His postdoctoral work examined traditional values and practices of ecosystems for food in Aotearoa. Noa has worked in marine and terrestrial ecosystem restoration and conservation around the Pacific, and has coupled these efforts with cultural and environmental education and community engagement. He has worked on traditional Hawaiian ethnobotany and agriculture and has implemented projects facilitated through a variety of partnerships with community organizations. He is recognized as an emerging expert in Hawaiian crops and cropping systems. His primary interests are in combining traditional and modern knowledge of land management to evaluate social utility, rather than economic, contributions. He is currently a research fellow with Ngai Tahu Research Centre at the University of Canterbury and an Assistant Professor at the University of Hawai‘i at Mānoa with a focus on Indigenous Crops and Cropping Systems.

Arillyn Moran-Lawrence, posted by Deb Shaw

"Elegant Syrah," © 2015, Arillyn Moran-Lawrence. Pen and ink, 13-1/2"  x 19". All rights reserved.

“Elegant Syrah,” © 2015, Arillyn Moran-Lawrence. Pen and ink, 13-1/2″ x 19″. All rights reserved.

“Elegant Syrah” is a pen and ink drawing of  grapes from a Temecula vineyard. I found this interesting group of grapes on the vine at the Callaway Winery. I liked the way the grapes were embraced by the leaves. I sketched and photographed them and made some color swatches as I hadn’t decided which media I would use.

Francesca Anderson’s pen and ink work has always fascinated me so I decided that I would use pen and ink. I began with stippling on the grapes and had to decide to make each grape unique in some very small way so that I could happily reach the end of my work.

I entered “Elegant Syrah” In the 119th Annual Juried Exhibition of the Catharine Lorillard Wolfe Art Club. I worked for 10 years to finally qualify to be a full member of the club and have now been a member of the group for many years.

The Exhibition at the historic landmark National Arts Club in Manhattan”s Gramercy Park is the club’s major event.  $8,000.00 in awards are given. A Metropolitan curator also serves on the jury of awards.

A Preview Reception benefits a travel fund for curators from the Metropolitan to research collections across the country.

Catharine Lorillard Wolfe was a philanthropist and art collector who was the only woman in the group of men who founded the Metropolitan Museum of Art. Catharine Lorillard Wolfe was the first woman to be on the board of of the Metropolitan Museum of Art.  The Art Club with her name was established in 1896, to aid women and to counsel and help them exhibit their art. Now the club reflects the members’ professional standing and interests. For more information on the Catharine Lorillard Wolfe Art Club, please see their website.

The National Arts Club is an historic private club in Gramercy Park, Manhattan. It is a National Historic Landmark.

By Arillyn Moran-Lawrence, posted by Deb Shaw

Arillyn Moran-Lawrence, "Elegant Syrah,"  pen and ink on paper. © 2014, all rights reserved.

Arillyn Moran-Lawrence, “Elegant Syrah,” pen and ink on paper. © 2014, all rights reserved.

BAGSC member Arilyn Moran-Lawrence’s pen and ink drawing titled “Elegant Syrah” has been juried into the Lloyd Library and Museum fall exhibition.  The Lloyd Library and Museum is one of the premier botanical libraries in the United States.  The exhibition is titled “If Wine is Sublime.”  The show runs from September 13, 2014 to December 12, 2014.

Can’t make it to the show? View the artworks online. The exhibition includes works in diverse media, including watercolor, oil, hand-woven tapestries, video, lithography and cast aluminum tile. Many of the participants are ASBA members.

The Lloyd Library and Museum is located at: 917 Plum Street, Cincinnati OH 45202. If you would like further information about the Lloyd Library and Museum, please contact Anna Heran, Exhibit Curator, 513 721 3707, or curator@lloydlibrary.org.

Congrats Arillyn!

by Deb Shaw

Janice Sharp (left) and Pat Mark (right) demonstrating and staffing the BAGSC Botanical Art Information Table.

Janice Sharp (left) and Pat Mark (right) demonstrating and staffing the BAGSC Botanical Art Information Table. photo by Peter Conlon

On Saturday, February 2, 2013, BAGSC participated in Roger’s Garden’s first “Day of Art” in Newport Beach. Fifty artists, using different media participated in a full day of drawing and painting demonstrations and workshops. The “Day of Art” was free to the public and for all ages.

Pat Mark talking with visitors to the BAGSC Botanical Art Information Table. The Information Table also displayed books, originals and prints of contemporary and historical botanical art and scientific illustration. Photo by Peter Conlon.

Pat Mark talking with visitors to the BAGSC Botanical Art Information Table. The Information Table also displayed books, originals and prints of contemporary and historical botanical art and scientific illustration. Photo by Peter Conlon.

Additionally, BAGSC had an interactive table where visitors could explore the botany (and some unusual) fruits and vegetables, and make stamp prints with them. BAGSC also had a botanical art information table, with a display of originals, prints and books of all kinds of botanical art, from scientific illustration to plant portraits, historical and current.

Tania Marien at the BAGSC Interactive Table, photo by Deb Shaw.

Tania Marien at the BAGSC Interactive Table, photo by Deb Shaw.

BAGSC artists participating included: Diane Daly, Clara Josephs, Arillyn Moran-Lawrence, Sue Kuuskmae, Alyse Ochniak, Tania Marien, Deborah Shaw, Pat Mark, and Janice Sharp.

Tania Marien and Deb Shaw gave a two-hour workshop in the afternoon in the outdoor amphitheater on drawing flowers and leaves in pencil, with drawing boards, drawing paper and pencils provided by Roger’s. A watercolor and pastel workshop was offered in the morning by plein aire artists David Damm and Gill Dillinger,  and a gourmet food truck, “Bite Me Foods” provided lunch for those who were hungry.

Tania Marien and visitors to the BAGSC Interactive Table. Kids of all ages used fruits and vegetables to create stamp art.

Tania Marien and visitors to the BAGSC Interactive Table. Kids of all ages used fruits and vegetables to create stamp art.

The event had been postponed from the previous Saturday due to rain. The weather held out this Saturday, and the event was packed with enthusiastic participants, even with the change in schedule. People and their dogs strolled the grounds, bought plants and took in the art.

Attendees were eager to watch the demonstrations, and BAGSC members spent the day talking about botanical art, different media and techniques to interested customers. Many inquired about botanical art classes and were complimentary about the day’s events. Roger’s reported overwhelmingly positive comments from their guests.

Thank you to all who participated, and to Roger’s for hosting the event. We hope there will be more in the future!

Deb Shaw (left) and Tania Marien (right) teaching a workshop about how to draw flowers and leaves in pencil. Photo by Peter Conlon.

Deb Shaw (left) and Tania Marien (right) teaching a workshop about how to draw flowers and leaves in pencil. Photo by Peter Conlon.

Deb Shaw expressively describing the morphology of a banana inflorescence to Theresa Marino from Roger's Gardens. Photo by Peter Conlon.

Deb Shaw expressively describing the morphology of a banana inflorescence to Theresa Marino from Roger’s Gardens. Photo by Peter Conlon.

Sue Kuuskmae chose to draw in the shade section of the nursery, near a fountain. Photo by Deb Shaw.

Sue Kuuskmae chose to draw in the shade section of the nursery, near a fountain. Photo by Deb Shaw.

Clara Josephs (left) and Diane Daly (right) discuss botanical art and painting with visitors.

Clara Josephs (left) and Diane Daly (right) discuss botanical art and painting with visitors.

Alyse Ochniak demonstrating in the garden, photo by Deb Shaw.

Alyse Ochniak demonstrating in the garden, photo by Deb Shaw.

Arillyn Moran-Lawrence demonstrating in the garden (in the luxurious outdoor furniture section). Photo by Deb Shaw.

Arillyn Moran-Lawrence demonstrating in the garden (in the luxurious outdoor furniture section). Photo by Deb Shaw.

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