Sunday, August 12, 2018

4 Ways to Say Goodbye

I am saying goodbye to Central Virginia after living here for over 12 years. My home in Lynchburg is on 3 acres (much of it trees) that borders a large rails-to-trails park system along the Black Water Creek. I have probably spend over 1500 hours walking on the trails and riding on the bike path over the years. Many more hours were spent puttering around my vegetable garden, a water garden and a flower garden. 

My California Giant Zinnias

I am saying goodbye because I am moving to Brooklyn into what I can only assume will be a small apartment.  This move is for the happiest of reasons and we are thrilled to be making this transition. That said, I will be leaving some wonderful outdoor spaces that have fed my soul and informed much of my artwork and animation for the last 12 years.

1. Savor Every Moment Together

We don't always know when things are coming to an end. I don't know how long it will take us to sell our house, but we know we are leaving.  I am trying to savor every minute I have left working in my yard, walking on the trails and riding on the Black Water Creek bike path. I want to be as present in each moment as I can. 

Black Water Creek Bike Path in the winter

2. Focus on What's Special

I want to revel in the sense of peace I have felt in these glorious natural spaces. Peace but also fascination. I have developed special relationships with fungi, lichens, goldfinches, deer and pileated woodpeckers, among many other life forms that have been an integral part of my neighborhood.

3. Express Gratitude

Tell the people who have made a difference how much you appreciate them. I am trying to do this in words and deeds.

We are giving most of our possessions to a number of organizations in the area whose work we appreciate. Lynchburg Grows is an urban farm that distributes food through their CSA program and to food deserts in Lynchburg with their Veggie Van, among other programs. I was very happy that we had a number of things they wanted, including two large drawings for their offices. Goodwill and the Habitat for Humanity Restore have also received donations. 

Donated to Lynchburg Grows: Yucca, oil pastel drawing on paper, 52"x42"

This is not completely altruistic! I must acknowledge they have done us a huge favor. We are trying to keep as much out of the landfill as possible. All of these organizations make a huge difference in that effort and we are most grateful.

4. Celebrate Your Appreciation with Art

My brother helped me build a small water garden here about 10 years ago. It has been a constant source of inspiration for my artwork and peace for my soul. I am so happy this artwork will go with me to Brooklyn and keep the garden in my memory for many years to come.

Water Garden 2, woodcut on painted paper, 24" x 36"

My current animation project for Anim8Nature is the cycle of seasonal changes during the 10 years I have observed my little water garden. This film will be based memories, photographs, woodcuts, drawings and time observing everyday.

Here is a recent drawing made with iPad app Procreate. Procreate captures time-lapse video of the process while I am drawing which makes for interesting video. I want to incorporate this and subsequent videos in my animated film.

It's not over yet, Lynchburg. Stay tuned for more.

How have you said goodbye to a home you loved?

Links to Other Posts:

Animating Nature & Science

I see a world where the transformative power of art and the creative problem solving of science blossom together. This is possible when we encourage our children to explore science with art and allow them time to imagine and create. Anim8Nature is dedicated to promoting environmental stewardship by exploring science with art and encouraging careful observation of the natural world.

Learn more about on this blog and our website. I have assembled a team of experts to create media, lesson plans and workshops to help students and families explore science with art. We want to spark curiosity and get kids outside as environmental stewards. Join us.

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