Huntley Meadows Park has a long history of welcoming artists of all ages. From our annual Photography Contest, to our quarterly Cafe Cattail coffeehouse, to our visual art shows and art camps and interpretive dance troupe, Huntley has promoted the nature-art connection for decades. We nurture local artists!
We would like to expand this artistic tradition to the new Outdoor Classroom, and to surrounding neighborhood-walkable families, through a series of art and nature classes for all ages. We have had our entire teaching budget cut out and must seek private donations to keep nature study alive at Huntley Meadows Park. Your contribution will go toward funding the materials and instruction for four arts experiences in 2013:
1. How to Draw Your Dragon, June 30, 2013, (ages 12-100+). Illustrator-naturalist Margaret Wohler will teach dragonfly biology, anatomy, behavior and basic bug drawing to teens and adults. Learn to spot and draw dragonfly activity, from a variety of species, right from the boardwalk.
2. Science and Art Camp, April 24-28, 2013, (ages 9-12). Preteenagers learn art through science instruction and observation. Huntley is perfect for animal and plant observation because of its biodiversity and up-close access to wetland and forest communities. Help nurture the next John James Audubon or Beatrix Potter!
3. Drawing and Sketching in Nature, August 18, 2013 (ages 5-9 years old), taught by Margaret Wohler. Beginning drawing in a natural setting.
4. Drawing in Nature: Keeping a Nature Journal, August 25, 2013 (ages 12-100+ and families), Sharpen your observational skills, and enjoyment of the natural world and art, by keeping a nature journal. Taught by Margaret Wohler.
Your contribution will specifically fund the following:
1. 60 Field Art kits: bound journal, pencil, eraser, ruler to be given, free of charge, to all participants in this spring session. Unused art kits will be distributed in a fall nature-arts session ($1,100 total). Providing art supplies eliminates an expensive supply fee which, typically, excludes many lower income participants. More of our neighbors can join!
2. Outreach to the HMP neighborhood. These families have not traditionally participated in our paid classes and experiences due to class fees. We want to create walkable, family-based, experiences for all ages to create a sense of 'nature-home' at Huntley Meadows for our apartment dwelling neighbors (flyers; $10).
3. Artistic instruction. Fund artists to instruct participants in the daylong workshops and Art/Science camp @$11/hour. ($240 total)
For a discussion on how drawing and scientific journaling enhances the understanding of abstract math and science concepts, please see this link and the attached research: http://knowledge-in-the-making.mpiwg-berlin.mpg.de/knowledgeInTheMaking/en/index.html
No funding is provided to this project by Fairfax County taxpayers; we thank FCPA for the use of the HMP Outdoor Classroom. All funding for the Art-Nature Series is privately raised through the Friends of Huntley Meadows' Park.
Risks and challenges
Our goal at Huntley Meadows is to create more family-friendly, walkable, nature experiences for the surrounding neighborhood. The HMP area is dominated by apartment-dwelling families for whom English is typically a second language. We want to welcome these families by emphasizing nature-observation in a non-language based format: art. Everyone can appreciate and love nature through successful observation and arts experiences!
Our challenge is to connect with these families to participate in our arts and nature instruction.
*This project is not part of FOHMP. Your donations are not tax-deductible.* Your donations will be used to purchase art supplies, all teaching materials, and pay arts instructors. Any leftover donated funds will be deposited with FOHMP for use in fall programming.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
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