2020 Boys & Girls Club Laguna Workshop
February 6, 2020
Both children from Laguna and Santa Ana attended Jane's Californian Wildlife Biro drawing workshop at Boys & Girls Club of Laguna Beach. This workshop was delivered as part of Jane's art and environmental education project Where Did All the Animals Go? in partnership with international wildlife charity Born Free. Bold, compassionate, abstract and expressive ballpoint pen drawings were created by children from age five years upwards, and perhaps the smallest drawing ever created in one of her workshops was a characterful Island fox, drawn by a very young artist.
Children, including Malachi, also shared insightful conservation knowledge with the group during her presentation which explored the enormous variety of Californian species. From coast to mountains to desert, California is brimming with endemic and iconic species. The state has 321 endangered species so this workshop highlighted ways to combat the bio-diversity crisis:
- LOOK AFTER YOUR OWN BACK YARD! Looking after local environments can help biodiversity flourish, no matter where we live. Plant pollinator-friendly plants from seed in gardens, pots and window boxes. If you don’t have a garden, volunteer for community urban or woodland planting schemes or beach clean-ups. Our gardens, parks and wild spaces can become a network of nature reserves. STOP using pesticides, nature will look after itself with birds and other insects eating greenfly on your roses! Embrace endemic weeds as the wildflowers they are and let them grow
- REDUCE CONSUMPTION: CHOOSE products that are sustainably and ethically sourced. RECYLCLE; EAT less meat; TAKE less car journeys; USE less water & power
- TELL others about climate emergency and biodiversity crisis – WORD OF MOUTH is key
- CONTACT your local Senator and voice your concerns about the climate emergency and biodiversity crisis
- DONATE to or RAISE funds for conservation organisations to help them help wildlife
One of the most endangered species in California is the gray wolf and the presentation included information about famous wolf OR-7 also known as Journey, that journeyed from Oregon to California in 2011. Sadly since this workshop OR-7's daughter OR-54 was killed. Read more here:
Presentation slide about gray wolves in California
Discussing OR-7's phenomenal journey and its presence in California Jane also reflected on the work of the Wolf Conservation Center New York who she has supported since 2012, producing artworks for their fundraisers:
American Dream 2014 colour Biro drawing, Jane Lee McCracken for Wolf Conservation Center
This workshop demonstrated children's love and enthusiasm for art and nature through their outstanding ballpoint pen drawings including Zoe's Mountain Lion and Ashley's accomplished Island Fox. Rocko aged 5, made a brilliant colour Biro drawing of endangered sea otters which Jane was most impressed with particularly Rocko's expressive preliminary Biro sketch of the mother sea otter hugging her pup. She was also impressived by Rocko's environmental knowledge which was a valuable contribution to her presentation.
Rocko with his Sea Otter Mother and Pup drawing
Carson made a splendid drawing of a great white shark drawn in a continuous line. Carson's father is a talented street artist, and Jane was thrilled to see images of his incredible murals.
Carson with his Great White Shark ballpoint pen drawing
Malakai not only contributed thoughtful information to Jane's presentation but he also embraced her explanation that drawing doesn't have to be photo-realistic and is about expressing ourselves, experimenting, transporting our minds and creating an extension of ourselves through an artwork that comes into existence for others to enjoy. She was thrilled with Malakai's abstract approach, his vibrant colour use and line-making which produced an amazing Mountain Lion drawing.
Malakai with his Mountain Lion drawing
Grace's accomplished work in progress of a Mountain Lion with brilliantly rendered eyes, clearly demonstrates her love of art. Jane is looking forward to seeing the finished drawing!
Grace with her Mountain Lion drawing
Rosie made an exceptional drawing of an endangered Gray Wolf with stunning green eyes.
With kind thanks to Mar, Danny and all staff and children of Boys & Girls Club of Laguna Beach for a very special day! Thanks also to Kirsten Rogers for organising this workshop.
Left to right: Mar Stash of Boys & Girls Club, Rosie and Jane
Tule Elk 2020 colour Biro drawing, Poppy
Great White Shark 2020 colour Biro drawing, Graeme