the wild studio experience
- in the early spring of 2010, I made a shelter for observing, drawing and making artwork, high up on the fellside behind my North Pennines home in England's north.
Since that time I've tried exploring other landscapes with a similar immersion in their environments. This (b)log describes my progress and some other works.
The mantle of my shelter has been removed. Presumably by a 'keeper in preparation for a passing shooting party - it would be unseemly for the landscape to be scarred by signs of shanty habitation. The season finished yesterday, so the shelter lasted well. Even the stones from around the firepit have been removed. The bigger posts of wood have been laid on top of the brash to weigh it down. The earth walls have been kicked away. I felt cut free. I've been wondering over the fellsides ever since, looking for somewhere else to set-up when the spring brings easier weather.
I've been digging out bits of clay and peat (very tiny bits) that have been exposed by the flush of meltwater, drying them, mixing with PVA, and using them to make images like this one. As it happens, this also includes a photo of an exposed rock-face and some branches.
Other bits I've brought back down from the shelter, like this wool and lichen, and the piece of birch-bark below.
I've learnt so much from this experience, although I fear that I'll forget some. Writing this blog may help me to remember. Most importantly, I've learnt so much about where to site a shelter and how to construct it. Rough wooden shelters are no good for the winter. This is no place for beast or human habitation.