Thursday 22 May 2014

Fiji Holiday Sketching

This was my eight year teaching botanical art and holiday sketching workshops at Daku Resort in Savusavu, Fiji. The place is such a hidden treasure, totally uncommercial and it is a place where time has stood still.
On this trip I detected signs of Progress, which is not always a bad thing. Many new roads were being made, and road upgrades had also been done, making it a much easier trip from Savusavu to Labasa (the capital) which is 1-1/2 hours across the island. Previously at least half the road was dirt and rocks and  extremely rough.
The new roads were the first indications of developing infrastructure. Perhaps Savusavu and the island of Vanua Levu will not be hidden treasures for much longer.
A sketch of a few of the bures nestled amongst the tropical rainsforest


This is the northern end of Savusavu town. Not much has changed, but I think the future will bring many changes.
The weather was superb, except for the last few days when the tropical rain came down with gusto. Not cold - just wet. I get the group participants out and about as weather permits so if it does rain, we have experienced as much as we can on the fine days.
Global warming has even come to the tropics with unseasonal weather. Even the dry seasons can produce torrential rain and very hot days. Years ago I would go at a certain time and know it would be fine and warm for the week. Past years this has not happened, so I am prepared for all eventualities.
Here are a few of the students work from the week. Botanical art is done in the mornings and sketching in the afternoons. I am always thrilled with what is produced for the week, It gives myself and the students themselves a great sense of satisfaction.
If they only take back one or two pertinent elements of knowledge it is worth it - but I am sure they all learned a lot.
Not everyone who joins me on my workshops is experienced. I take all skill levels, so some of the students had never done botanical art before. You would be amazed with the standard of work.
Will leave you with three of the paintings, and a general overview of the rest.

The paintings of Helen, Carole and Annie

The group's drawings and paintings for the week

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