The sun shone and the wind was still as I sat next to a burbling stream, writing and sketching. Icicles hung from branches at the river, and rocks were tinged with frost as the days grow colder. Chimney smoke hovered above a house across the valley. The mountains of Rondane national park, dusted with white, glistened in sunshine under a cloudless sky. I’m back in Folldal, Norway as Artist in Residence. Here’s what I’ve been working on.
I took part in Tegnetober (Drawing-tober). Tegne (a Norwegian business spesialising in ink and drawing supplies) issued daily prompts, part of a growing trend of yearly October drawing challenges. I created with pencil this year, inspired by the mountains and forests of Folldal. My theme this year was humans as part of nature (with a few dragons, trolls, and wizards thrown in for good measure!).
I sit outside when it’s sunny, sketching from real life. It will soon be too cold to do this, and I savour each warm autumn day. Some of my sketches become ink drawings, some watercolour illustrations. I focus on the natural landscape, nestling in people, barns, houses, or old mine buildings as reminders of human activity. It will be fun to see how my perception changes as snow arrives and buildings become more (or less) prominent.
These creations, and my Tegnetober drawings, are preparation for a book I’m story-boarding about life in a Norwegian forest. They are also motivation for my upcoming Master’s thesis: comics as vehicles for telling stories about science, sustainability, and stewardship.
Welcome to this year’s calendar, featuring watercolour illustrations from Folldal, Norway. Purchase calendars and artwork from the Outspoken Images shop. They also available at Hjertefryd, a local art and yarn boutique in Folldal. (Make sure to say hello to the lovely Nini, owner and artist there!)