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A wild ‘en plein air’ artist workshop in the heart of grizzly countryPosted: August 6, 2012

Wildlife artists, landscape visionaries and Sunday painters rejoice: You’re invited to a free Flathead Artists Workshop with Dwayne Harty, Banff National Park’s inaugural artist-in-residence.

Harty is a renowned wildlife artist who has been focusing on Rocky Mountain subjects in his year-long Yellowstone to Yukon project. In this free workshop—which will take place in the heart of grizzly country near Fernie—Harty will offer in-depth feedback to those artists who want to improve their plein air techniques.

“The workshop runs from 9 a.m., when we will meet at the Morrissey Road turn off, 16 kilometres east of Fernie on Highway 3,” explained Robyn Duncan, Wildsight’s program manager. “Artists must register first, but everyone is welcome.”

Artists are expected to bring their own supplies, and the trip into the Flathead will be convoy-style. “We don’t want people getting lost,” Duncan said.

The workshop is slated for Sunday, August 19. Bring a brown bag lunch—“And get ready to picnic in the grand tradition of outdoor painters.”

Members of the Flathead Wild team will be on site to give artists a report on their efforts to complete the Waterton-Glacier International Peace Park by adding a portion of B.C.’s Flathead River Valley to it.

“The Peace Park is one of North America’s last remaining wildlife sanctuaries that allows grizzlies and other mega fauna to cross the Canada-U.S. border freely,” Duncan said. “We’ve been working together to include the important habitat in the lower one-third of B.C.’s Flathead River Valley for several years.”

The workshop location will offer artists stunning views of a special Rocky Mountain landscape that’s invisible from tamer locations. “This is wilderness of the finest order,” Duncan said. “The rivers run clear and the slopes feature unique rock colorations and formations. It’ll be eye-opening for those who have never ventured into Canadian Flathead territory.”

Harvey Locke, with the Yellowstone to Yukon Conservation Initiative, said Harty is the perfect artist to conduct the workshop. “Dwayne has produced an exceptional body of art work that speaks to one of the most pressing issues of our time: the survival of large mammals and their wilderness habitats in the face of rapidly expending human population and development pressures.”

To learn more about the workshop, contact Robyn Duncan at [email protected]. To learn more about the art of Dwayne Harty, visit  www.DwayneHarty.com.

“Artists appreciate beauty like no one else,” Duncan said.  “The Flathead is a perfect place to connect with beauty.”  If you would like to participate, please RSVP to [email protected].
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