natural history : a new workshop

natural history : a workshop with ann wood

* Update – The workshop has sold out but please add your name to the wait list if you were hoping to join – cancellations do happen. 

Registration just opened for “Natural History” a three day creative retreat with The Makerie in Boulder – September 22nd to the 24th.

Our assignment for our three days together is to create and document an imagined natural history. We will look for inspiration at the intersection of history, poetry and nature, working collaboratively as well as individually to create and photograph a collection of specimens.  We’ll use textiles, paper, found objects and a variety of other tools, techniques, materials and inspiration I’m bringing.

stitched botanicals

I’ll guide you through improvisational (and fun) exercises designed to spark you creatively, help you dig deeply into your imagination and generates ideas.  It’s a  spontaneous, “yes and” way of working – each action builds on the previous – you work with what shows up. It’s less about finished works and more about making connections and  recognizing serendipity and happy accidents when they appear. We will pull ideas and details from our experiments as a starting point for designing and making our plants and creatures.

blue beetle

mushroom specimens

hand stitched toadstool

perched fly

On our last day together we will style and photograph our specimens individually and as a group.  I’ll share tips for creating compelling compositions and moods, simple lighting hacks and other seat of the pants techniques that I use in photographing my own work.

This is a workshop about experimenting, collaborating, playing and getting out of your own way.  That is a life long daily challenge for me and I love sharing what I’ve learned so far. I hope I can help you be a more intrepid explorer of your imagination, reach past the territory you’ve already navigated and expand your skills for sharing that world.

Sounds like fun to me and I hope to see you there! If you’ve got questions please send me a message – I’m happy to help.

*registration has closed but you can still join the wait list here.


  1. ‘Getting out of your own way’
    What a great line

    I was just thinking about your makerie course and thought of my very arty daughter in law. She’s a great illustrator but her real job is restoration. She worked at the amazing Kew gardens in London and is now in a beautiful library in Manchester UK.
    You can imaging my disappointment when I realised your in America!!!!! How did that happen ,I love your work and blogs but in my head I thought you were here in the UK. In fact I really think you should move here we have the amazing Mr Finch that has a similar love of nature ( slightly bigger than yours) timous beasties a fab pair that have been going for years and years producing nature inspired designs for wallpaper and fabric and lots of other super UK artist you’d love . So if you can’t move here you could always plan a course here and exhibition here

  2. I wish you could do an online version of the botanicals. I live in South Africa, and coming to the states for a class is just beyond what I can manage at the moment.

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