Drawing with my Lawn Mower

During the summer I work in the studio and in the garden.  There is a symmetry to the activity in both realms.  The goal with the garden is to create a pollinator oasis which it is due to the number of lawns in the vicinity.

Starting this project in 2013 when we first moved here, the garden has come into its own. When I look out the front door, I pause and let my eyes focus, and can see the small movements throughout the garden.  What has been startling is the variety of life that has appeared.  It is not that bees have shown up in the garden -it is the number of species of bees that has appeared and this goes for the butterflies, moths, beetles, and other flying insects.

The lawn is no longer just grass but purslane, dandelions, clover, hawkweed, wild daisies, and more plants that I have not had the time to identify.  Free ground cover that is more drought resistant than grass.

That brings me to my lawn mower.  I am aware of the life that is nestled underneath the blades of grass and I find myself cutting around a stand of goldenrod or wild daisies.  The milkweed that I planted in a garden bed now stands in grouping among the grass.  It is difficult to cut down the longer clover that is full of flowers and dotted with bee bums.  So I cut around them too.  I also found some funnel spiders and let them be as well.  The lawn looks resolved, compositionally, even with these little islands of wildness.

I think this influences my painting as well as I learn to let some of the wildness there be as well.

Thoughts

This section includes some of the ideas that have occurred around this body of work.

These drawings are evidence of sustained attention and focus.  A counterstrike in this techno-saturated world.  When I started this work it was with the thought of working slower in an environment that demands a constant churn of disposable ideas.