Mission Statement

The Rocky Mountain Society of Botanical Artists is an open and diverse group of artists, collectors and admirers who share a love for the practice and perpetuation of botanical art and illustration with a fond focus on plants in the Rocky Mountain Region.
We encourage and participate in educational outreach, juried and non-juried exhibits, lectures, workshops and regular chapter meetings. The RMSBA is proud to be the very first chapter affiliation of the international organization, the American Society of Botanical Artists.

Wednesday, October 31, 2018

Happy Halloween! Spook it up, Everybody

Tomorrow is November 1, and you will be able to renew your membership on the ASBA website! Don’t forget to renew for RMSBA at the same time. It’s also All Saints’ Day. Remember St. Brigid of Kildare who, rumor has it, started an art school for the medicinal herbalism students in “Dark Age” Ireland. Know your plants!

“Invisible Links,” this year’s DBG-SBAI juried show, is on the move to the Great Hall of the Visitors’ Pavilion, Daniel Stowe Botanical Garden, Belmont, NC, from January 25 to March 3, 2019. Congratulations, everyone, on greater exposure through exhibits.

“Lost in the Woods” is at the CU Museum of Natural History in Boulder until January 5, 2019. “Cannabis: A Visual Perspective” is at the Center of Southwest Studies at Fort Lewis College in Durango. If you’re takin’ a road trip, drop in on them.

Holiday Party this year is Sunday, December 9, 2018, 1 – 4 pm, at Shiere Melin’s lovely home in northwest Arvada. Eileen Richardson, the Prez, is providing the food – something about the Year of the Earth-Dog??? That should be interesting.

RMSBA Logo poll. Your executive board has decided to update the organization's logo. It was developed some time ago and the original digital files no longer exist. We need to work with printers and so files must function for many formats. In addition, we are striving for a fresh clean look with one of 3 logos, which were sent to your email accounts. Don’t forget to cast your vote by emailing rmsbartists@gmail.com and noting 1, 2 or 3 by November 1st. That’s tomorrow.

Women's Survival Kits. Judy Vanderbosch is spearheading a wonderful effort to put together Women's Survival Kits to be donated to Catholic Charities this winter. These will include scarves and hats sewn from the scraps of the Art Sacks. Check your email for information about certain items still needed. Please consider donating something you might have extra of, or making the effort to purchase a missing item. We will be assembling the kits on December 6th. 
Cozy Tuque and Scarf

Slightly older news

Sheila Payne, our friend and colleague, has passed away. Many of you remember her enthusiasm and great talent. After raising her family, at age 60 Sheila resumed her painting endeavor while traveling extensively around the world. At 70, she earned her certification from the Denver Botanic Gardens botanical illustration program. Illness put an abrupt end to her artistic career in 2010. RMSBA sponsored a Retrospective Exhibit of 40 of her paintings in 2013, the year she also received the Sydney Parkinson award.

Executive Board and Member Meeting on 9/30 was rather poorly attended -- a shame as ‘twas interesting. The Board presented Vanessa Martin with a book in appreciation for her service as President and Treasurer. The volume is cased in a canvas wrap made and painted by Judy Vanderbosch.

Meetings for 2019

Executive Board meeting January 13
Member meetings March 31, June 23, September 29, and December 8 (Holiday Party)

Extremely preliminary call for entries: Winged Things! Birds, nests, eggs, trees and shrubs as habitat, and all such stuff. “Feathers and Flora”? The CU Museum of Natural History collections will be available to us, but other sources are just fine. If you have previous work in this thread, consider submitting it.

Film at Denver Museum of Nature and Science: The Feather Thief
Wednesday, November 14, Phipps Theater, 7 p.m.
$12 DMNS, Bird Conservancy of the Rockies, or Audubon Society member; $15 nonmember 

American flautist Edwin Rist is unusually obsessed with the Victorian art of fly-tying. Bizarrely, Rist broke into the Tring Museum north of London in 2009, home to rare bird specimens with feathers worth staggering amounts of money among fly-tiers. Once inside, the champion salmon fly artist grabbed hundreds of bird skins and escaped. This unusual event catapulted author Kirk Wallace Johnson into an obsession of his own that took him around the world. Hear Johnson share his relentless pursuit to find the missing birds, which he documents in his book The Feather Thief: Beauty, Obsession, and the Natural History Heist of the Century. A book sale and signing will follow the program.

Program presented in partnership with
Bird Conservancy of the Rockies with promotional support from Audubon Society of Greater Denver and Audubon Rockies.   

Our next RMSBA project revolves around birds and their interactions with plants (“Feathers and Flora”) so this film may be of real interest.
From Discover Magazine

SWSBA Reprints from Gillian Rice:
I wonder if any of you have read Art & Fear: Reflections on the Perils (and Rewards) of Artmaking by Bayles and Orland? Scott Stapleton talked about it in an article in the ASBA Journal. Excellent. It helped me to have a different perspective, but of course, I have to keep reminding myself. Click here to link up…
Here’s a link to a beautiful video of the Sydney Florilegium recently on view at the Shirley Sherwood Gallery in Kew.
Inspiring, but I think I held my breath for the very last step - I have never had the need to do that step, thankfully...
Thanks, Gillian.

ASBA Annual Conference in St. Louis, October 11-13, was terrific. I had a great class and found a new pencil (Palomino Blackwing) for smooth darks, drew some new plants, had a vastly interesting tour of St. Louis, met some fascinating artists, renewed a few acquaintances, really enjoyed the Small Works show. Here are some images.

Friday, September 28, 2018

Longer nights bring on autumn blooms

Reminder: Member Meeting 1 – 3:30 pm, Sunday, September 30, 2018.
Belmar Library Meeting Room, 555 S. Allison Pkwy, Lakewood, CO 80226
1. Next Call for Entry
2. Schedule members meetings and board meetings for 2019
3. What is the state of board members for upcoming year.
4. Updates on exhibitions
5. Looking ahead to Holiday Party - December 9th: Where, and other ideas?
6. Open discussion.

Executive Board Meeting 11 am, Sunday, September 30, 2018
Belmar Whole Foods meeting space (across Wadsworth from Belmar Library)

“Invisible Links” at Denver Botanic Gardens until October 14. Interesting show; members have work in it, and it really is amazing.

Lost in the Woods banner at CUMNH

“Lost in the Woods” at the CU Museum of Natural History in Boulder now, and “Cannabis: A Visual Perspective” at the Center of Southwest Studies at Fort Lewis College in Durango very soon.

San Juan Mountains, Leaf-peeper season.

East-facing slope of Silverton Caldera

ASBA Annual Conference in St. Louis, October 11-13

Sunday, August 19, 2018

Hot Summer Days beginning to taper off?

Wait! What happened to July?

It was an early blooming season for wildflowers in the Front Range, frustrating and challenging botanical artists tasked to render species already in rags when visited. Wildfires raged across the drought-stricken Western Slope, adding smoke to our breathable air. Moose have taken it into their heads to cross the Great Divide and appear near Estes Park and Empire.

Well, July 1 was Canada Day; July 4 was US Independence Day. July 6 was a First Friday event for “Lost in the Woods,” and lots of Lookie-Lous came through. July 14 was Bastille Day (Vive la France!), and the RMSBA Art Show and Sale at Tagawa Gardens. July 23, ‘”Lost in the Woods” went into temporary storage after a very successful showing at Valkarie Gallery – the most traffic generated by an exhibit there so far this year! At least three works are now marked “sold.”

The last weekend brought the [four-day] Underground Music Showcase to SoBo, so your Editor decamped to Grand Lake Lodge, and saw an excellent production of “Annie.” The Rocky Mountain Land Library Buffalo Peaks Ranch in South Park hosted RMSBA (and other) guests on July 28, with a display of books from the collection useful to artists. 

“Invisible Links” opened August 15 and will run to mid-October at the Gates Court Gallery at Denver Botanic Gardens. The Artist Reception was Sunday, August 19, 1-3 pm; hope you didn’t miss it. Do see this show; several members have work in it, and it really is amazing. An emissary from a venue in North Carolina has approached about traveling the exhibit. Way to go!

Artists seeking inspiration for projects might want to consider participating in the Rare Plant Symposium of the Colorado Native Plant Society
Sept. 14th from 8:30-4:00
Northside Aztlan Community Center
112 E. Willow St., Fort Collins, CO

Registration @ www.conps.org

“This year we will highlight the northeast Colorado G2&G3 species in addition to the G1s, T&E and a brief review of the BLM and Forest Service sensitive species. A detailed agenda will be posted on the CoNPS website. Registration is still $10, either walk-in or in advance.”
“Lost in the Woods” will be moving to the CU Museum of Natural History in Boulder this fall, and “Cannabis: A Visual Perspective” moves to the Center of Southwest Studies at Fort Lewis College in Durango in September. We’re on the College Circuit!

Member Meeting on the schedule for September 30, location TBD.

ASBA Annual Conference in St. Louis, October 11-13. Still time to Register.

Saturday, June 30, 2018

Thursday, June 21, 2018

Good Solstice to You

Daylight hours across North America on this Summer Solstice:

Member Meeting (and Board Meeting) for June 24 is canceled. We’ll see you in September.

Monday, June 25, is Hanging Day for ‘Lost in the Woods.’ We open in Lakewood…