Nature Art Lab

NatureArt Lab offers participants the opportunity to learn new skills, meet new people and immerse themselves in art inspired by nature. Select a series of courses to suit your interests, and consider developing your foundation skills through a better understanding of colour theory, drawing skills or use of water-based mediums such as watercolour or gouache. Our team of experienced tutors will support your creative learning journey with expert instruction and guidance in a fully equipped art-science space.

Threatened Species: Grey-headed flying foxes - with Peter Wale




This workshop focuses on one of Australia's threatened and vulnerable species. The Grey-headed flying fox (Pteropus poliocephalus) is the largest bat in Australia, and is listed as a vulnerable species due to a significant decline in its numbers. Challenges include habitat destruction, urbanization, climate change and other threats.

About the tutor:

Peter Wale is an artist who draws and paints nature. Originally from the UK, Peter trained for a short time at the Royal Tunbridge Wells School of Art before migrating to Australia. Peter has since studied art at the Julian Ashton School of Art in Sydney and with botanical artists Barbara Duckworth, Marion Westmacott and Billy Showell. Peter has subsequently taught art at the Nepean Community College in Western Sydney, the Springwood Art Centre in the Blue Mountains and for the City of Ryde  Art Society. He has been commissioned to paint works for the Blue Mountains and Blacktown City Councils and has exhibited botanical artworks at Parliament House, Sydney, The Royal Botanic Gardens, Sydney and at the CSIRO in Canberra. Peter currently teaches at the Maritime Museum, Huskisson - with solo exhibitions on Australian birds. He also teaches workshops for Birdlife Australia and The Society of Conservation Biology in Sydney. His work has been published nationally through 'Australian Artist' and internationally through 'Artists and Illustrators' magazine.

About the workshop:

This workshop will begin with a field trip to the Commonwealth Park flying fox campsite for observational sketches. We will have the opportunity to observe and sketch these incredible mammals with a full scientific briefing by scientist Belinda Wilson (ANU). We will use these drawings to contribute to artworks developed in the studio at M16 with artist Peter Wale. 

Students will explore the use of watercolour to create artworks of a grey-headed flying fox. Peter will teach drawing skills and demonstrate the use of gestural drawing, drafting, negative space, composition and tonal values to create drawings which fully express the life and spirit of the flying fox. Peter will also provide tuition in the use of watercolour brush techniques, colour mixing and glazing to help enhance our ability to produce vibrant animal portraits.

Participating artists will have the opportunity to exhibit works for an information night on the Grey-headed flying fox (dates to be confirmed). Help us to help the flying foxes through art and education!

Suitable for artists with some experience with drawing and use of watercolour. Beginners are also welcome. Refreshments will be provided; participants will need to bring their own lunch. A materials list will be provided on booking. 


* 5.30 - 7.30pm, Friday 5 April - Field Trip to Commonwealth Park;

* 9.30am - 4.30pm, Saturday 6 - Sunday 7 April - Workshop

Venue: Workspace A, M16 Artspace, 21 Blaxland Crescent, Griffith

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