Really Truly Treely

Hello! said the tree, raising its arms in delight.

Hello! said the tree, raising its arms in delight.

I have been out sketching again. After 18 months. I couldn’t believe it had been so long. But when I looked at the date of my last drawing in my little One Sketch A Day book, it said February 2013! I know why I stopped, but that is a story for another time. Meanwhile, it’s summer glorious summer, and Prospect Park in Brooklyn is close enough to seem like my own backyard. I take my camp stool, sketchbook (a regular one, 6×9 inches) and pencil case and cross the street called Prospect Park West. There, behind the stone wall and before the “forest,” along a patch of green by a narrow dirt path used only by occasional joggers and dog-walkers, I see my tree. I know it is my tree because it is holding its arms out, calling, “Come! I’ve been waiting for you!” And right then and there I decide I will draw this tree and only this tree for a while. I will be like Joan Fontaine’s character in the movie Rebecca when she talks about how her father painted the same tree over and over again because he said that if you find a perfect thing you should stick to it.

My first effort. Rough, heavy-handed, without grace, though it still says "Hello!"

My first effort. Rough, heavy-handed, without grace, though it still says “Hello!”

To draw and sketch a tree is to connect with Nature, and Form. And an Energy. And an Energy Flow. I draw the flowing form of crusty bark as it weaves a pattern up and down a tree.

Water, flowing through the soil. The memory of water is

Earlier sketch, last year when I was exploring tree bark.

Earlier sketch, last year when I was exploring tree bark.

in the tree bark, with its ridges and crevices. Tree bark mimics the horizontal flow of ground water, now carving a vertical path up towards the sun, up towards the light.

 

Imagining the flow of energy in a tree (1985)

Imagining the flow of energy in a tree (1985)

Tree roots drink the water, and the water flows up through the tree. Tree bark is a living memory of water in the soil.

Second effort, second day, getting the hang of it a little more this time.

Second effort, second day, getting the hang of it a little more this time.

The roots reach out for the water; the bark immortalizes its flow.

I draw and sketch my tree, one line at a time.

Short, sketchy lines, as I marvel at this huge solidity that grew out of the crumbly ground and its particles of dirt, to stand so tall…

 

Third effort, different angle, there is more tree, lines are more graceful.

Third effort, different angle, there is more tree, lines are more graceful.

…with arms reaching up for joy!

(Doesn’t it look like a dancer?)

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About Nancy Wait

Nancy Wait is an artist a writer, a writing coach/editor, and author of the memoir "The Nancy Who Drew, The Memoir That Solved A Mystery." She is a former actress (stage, film and TV) in the UK under the name of Nancie Wait. She hosted the blog talk radio show "Art and Ascension," and more recently, "Inspirational Storytellers." Nancy is currently at work on the sequel to her memoir, "The Nancy Who Drew the Way Home," to be published in 2017.
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One Response to Really Truly Treely

  1. Nancy Seifer says:

    Nancy, There is true Magic in these words and images. They bring light, love and joy to the soul! Thank you for sharing the beauty of your inner light.

    Like

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