Category: DRAWINGS AND PAINTINGS

original official Standing As Earth Banner

STANDING AS EARTH : January 13th – February 12th 2021 #standingasearth

A creative attempt to summarize/record my, month-long, participation in this remarkable project.
My original, published, ‘cool’ captions and inspiring ‘Earth quotes’ became lost to the ether when I chose to delete my Facebook account…..which is just as well….as with hindsight it seems I was not really listening…..some of my posts where only text and gone forever now ….but this is all the visual work I shared with the group….cobbled together, chronologically, and with new meaning.

It all began with Nuts.
Tree Seeds.
Those prefectly designed, well travelled, nuggets of both nutrition and potential.
(Reminded now, also. in hindsight, of an Egyptian Nut.
Daughter of vital breath and heat, a star-covered naked woman, bowed over the Earth,
With her head in the West and her feet in the East. A bridge between the Earth and the Sky.)

I wondered how this ‘tree’ would grow from there…..

kat robertson artist

The endangered red squirrel became my constant companion on this journey.
And, as always here, the Wind.

Winter Hawthorn showed me her sharp, protective, thorns…..

kat robertson artist

The Beech hedge whispered ‘Sssssh…..ssssh’……

kat robertson artist

Mole spoke to me of staying buzy, but remaining underground, unseen…..

kat robertson artist

Mosses demonstrated how to cling on and thrive, on only cold, ungiving, stone……

kat robertson artist

But I was not really listening …….
And worms writhed in the compost heap of my mind, giving birth to strange new, artifical, creatures….

kat robertson artist

I have a well-weathered head.
Colonized now by Nature.
Worn away by Time.

Still able, though, to see those ‘Spots of Light’ and bask in their Radiance.

kat robertson artist

Celebrate their Beauty.

kat robertson artist

That is, until I see when I venture out, again and again, our trashing of everything Sacred …
And I am returned to Grieving.

Yet, I was reminded, in that Darkness, there is always Light.
You only have to find new ways of Seeing.

kat robertson artist

It is Imbolc.
A time of Rebirth. Of Future. A Time of New Beginnings and Returning Light.
Humble Snowdrops blaze a fanfare.
Hope Incarnate.
Spring is on its way.

The soil gives way to green, urgent, spears of New Life, pushing up toward the Sun.

kat robertson artist

Even, inside our winter home, the houseplants put on a show of wondrous, exotic, blooms.

kat robertson artist

Out walking I was shown something weird, almost alien, something that I had never encountered before.
Sea squirts!
Earth spoke to me again of all the unseen wonders that she holds.
That Living can only ever be learning.

I cracked open my first rotten egg in a long, long time.
The smell was of Sulphur.
I learned that Humans create more Sulphur now than is released by all the Earth’s volcanos put together.
So Humans smell, to the Earth, of Sulphur too.
A smell associated with Decay.
And the breaking open of her Crust.

kat robertson artist

Then we were invited to dig deep and find our authentic Howl.
Always a tough one.

kat robertson artist

It turned out my Howl is, and has always been, my felt Impotence in affecting any real Change
Through what I am able to do, through my own unique gifts.
Earth told me it was OK to share, again, some work I have already done.
For it is Work that has not lost Value through Age.
Just as I have not lost Value.

kat robertson artist

Work created when I first began to Give the Earth a Voice online.
(Though, at that time, I thought I was Alone in doing so.)

kat robertson artist

Sharing this Work, reminded me that I have been Standing here a long, long Time already.
And brought home how committed I am to doing it still.

kat robertson artist

Still.
Rarely witnessed and, in the main, uncelebrated.

kat robertson artist

As undeserving of applause as a weed in a lawn.
A rock, the moss or a twisted tree.
A sea squirt.
Or a hooded crow.
This is not a show.

kat robertson artist

A creature of magik and alchemy.
Who no longer needs to shout out “I am here!”
Because, in the course of this experiment, the only One who really matters told me that:

She Loves me,
that She is Sorry,
that She Forgives me
and is Grateful for all that I do.

And when I heard that back….

I just Let Go.

I AM HOME

and that is where you’ll always find me.

Still Standing.

Kat Robertson. Standing As Earth. Imbolc 2021



I am staring at this screen.
How to condense the Experience?
It’s impossible!
The above barely scratches the surface.
Now only recorded in pages and pages and pages and pages and pages
of messy, scrawled notes, avid, crazed, chanelled, journalling …processing …..too much to edit.

And this trail of shared artworks.

I have deleted my Facebook account.
Deleted all social media accounts.
I am too much to edit.
It was Earth that called me to withdraw from all that fight to be seen.
The fight to feel heard.
While I celebrate all who are able to continue this work of being visible online.
Who have those skills.
I have become exhausted from trying to find new ways to say such a simple thing.
There simply are no words left in my limited vocabulary.

I can tell you how I felt when I first saw the online invitation.
YES! YES! What a brilliantly simple idea!
Let’s ALL Stand AS Earth.

————————————————————————————————————————————————


Earth, my true Nature, guides me now to simply write of the WEATHER during this month long experiment #standingasearth on Facebook.

The Weather of Standing As Earth

It began with a, freezing, Siberian Wind that howled from the East.
Screaming over vast, populated, landmasses,
Carrying all that stale air,
To meet the ocean
Here.
All the way from China, it came hurtling through, at tree-breaking ,wave-hurling, speed,
Onward over the Atlantic, toward the East Coast of the Americas.
It was hard, sometimes, to Breathe.
The Land became hard too, as iron.
It’s Life Blood frozen.
Impermanent diamonds grew in the Mud.
And the Trees grew hair of Ice.
Until the very Dryness turned it all to Dust.
Dust that came Alive, like dervishes, like dancers,
Rising, with the gusting wind, up from the Ground.
Gritty in my eyes.
Making me Cry.

And then it Snowed.
And all became Still and Silent.
And all became Clear and Sharply defined.
Blueish and Breathtaking.
The Light alone, a sensory orgasm.

And then, it all, inevitably,
Thawed.

The winds have never stopped blowing.

They are blowing still.
They have just swung around a bit and radically changed direction.

I found I had been blown off course.

I found myself, full circle, called back into the Mystery.

I found I was, already, HOME.


Kat Robertson. Standing As Earth. Imbolc 2021

“Ssssssh…..Sssssh….” EARTH

My last post on Facebook, after realising I felt I had shared way too much, and deleting my account, was this.
It hangs on the wall of my ‘artden’.
And, while not my own words, says all I really have left to say of any worth.
My continued prayer is only that more of us will find this Truth and try their very best to LIVE BY IT.
And each find their own ,unique, Balance.

(N.B. I have only just realised that when a person deletes their Facebook account, they disappear, also, from all groups. As if they had never been there at all. I experience a deep sadness about that, as I fell in Love, with new brothers and sisters, and Earth, over and over again, during this month of participation …….. despite not joining in on Zoom! Now guided just to rest in the Knowing that we are, all connected, through the Forest floor. )

“Albatross!”

Inspired by an online ‘call-out’ for ink drawings of either a hummingbird, a penguin, an Artic Tern or and Albatross.
But now I cannot find the page.

I was thinking about that moment.
The moment when a single, solitary, just-fledged, Albatross takes-off, for the first Time.

And then does not touch dry land for 4 – 10 years…..incredible birds.

kat robertson artist

There is a lot of white space in this drawing.

What a difference a frame makes!

So happy that the right person came along to the exhibition and bought ‘CROWNE’ from me.
He was into tattoo inking and she spoke to him.
(Apparently, the fact that my artist freind, who did most of the advertising for the show, had used this image on the poster, meant that ‘to see Crowne’ was the main reason he came to the exhibition in the first place.
She ‘caaaaaa-lled’ to him.
I wish I was better at ‘advertising’.)

He wanted it framed, so I contacted a local artist/framer.
I had a clear vision that I wanted a burned frame.
We found a wooden frame that looked as if it could ‘take a burning’ and, after he had constructed it, I took it home to ‘distress with flame’.
After burning the frame, with a blow torch, I washed, scrubbed and waxed it.
It looked great.
The framer told me it was a ‘real bugger’ though, as, when the picture was being mounted, some small charred pieces kept appearing behind the glass.
He had to re-do it four times!!
But the end result does look amazing.
I wept when I saw it first time.
I think many artists will agree, it is easy to dismiss ‘older’ works that do not find new homes.
They lie, unseen, in a folder/ a drawer until, eventually, hard choices have to be made.
This drawing was very special to me though. I probably would have kept it for years.

But wow! How it came together in a frame!

I have a kind of allergy to the ubiqitous ‘rectangle’ of a frame though.
Always reminds me of the ‘cage of our conditioning’.
And as this work was always, essentially, been the illustration to a favorite poem of mine, I thought I would make a scroll to attach onto the back of it.
So story and picture remained together.

I made a quill from a crow’s feather and painstakingly wrote out the poem. Then aged the paper with teabags and burned the edges.
Then stuck both quill and scroll on the back of the painting using real red sealing wax.

Luckily the customer loved this too, despite my ‘authentic’ calligraphy!
I hope they will be very happy together for years to come.

#100daystreetales (pt 5)

The 100 day project is complete!

I have been very buzy setting up an exhibition in the village, but somehow I have managed to keep up with the days!!

These are drawn, direct with permanent, indian ink onto the inkjet print paper after spending some Time with the shapes in the branches and ‘seeing’ what arises in them.
They are not penciled out first.
They are then stained with a homemeade stain made from alder-bark.
This can be layered for shading and has a beautiful, natural, luminous quality.

All of this batch are ‘first-takes’, with no-re-draws this Time!

Each addition is published daily on Facebook, where the whole collection, so far, can be viewed at #100daystreetales (typed in Facebook search)
The comments have been encouraging and fun!

Or follow these links for previous blog posts:
Part 1
Part 2
Part 3
Part 4

And last, but not least…..here’s a hedgehog!
It was so sweet.
A freind of mine came to the Gaia-Hut exhibition and looked through all the 100 days images and had a bit of a sad face….she so wanted to find hedgehog, as she had been having a lovely time with some in her garden!

I picked up the next blank…and there it was! A hedgehog.

Hope this will make her happy when she next visits.

hedgehog

#100treetales (pt 4)

The 100 day project continues on!

Been finding it harder to keep up with this the last few weeks.
But ‘not doing’ one day means doing two the next and that is quite a push to get them done!

These are drawn, direct with permanent, indian ink onto the inkjet print paper after spending some Time with the shapes in the branches and ‘seeing’ what arises in them.
They are not penciled out first.
They are then stained with a homemeade stain made from alder-bark.
This can be layered for shading and has a beautiful, natural, luminous quality.

All of this batch are ‘first-takes’, with no-re-draws this Time!

Each addition is published daily on Facebook, where the whole collection, so far, can be viewed at #100daystreetales (typed in Facebook search)
The comments have been encouraging and fun!

Or follow these links for previous blog posts:
Part 1
Part 2
Part 3

After I published Day 64/’bareback’ a freind got in touch saying that she could see another horse in the same shadow picture.
(I sometimes publish the original ‘blank’ asking if viewer’s can see how I got there.)
She sent me a simple drawing to show me where. I was blown away!
When I had sat down to do it the picture had simply screamed “Horse!” at me, but I was struggling to ‘see’ it.
I did, after much squinting, find a horse and rider.

But the horse she could see was mighty, using the whole page!
And so totally clear , once she had shown me, I could not ‘unsee’ it!

So I printed a repeat shadow pic and drew her stallion out.

I think it is my favorite from this batch as result of such collaboration! Interesting how I often ‘know’ what I am looking for too…..even if I do not always ‘see’ it right away…



Day 74! Getting there!

(click on first image to view as gallery)

I also recieved some other interesting feedback today, on Facebook.

A friend commented that she ‘thought they all tended to look imprisoned and a little sad.’

I found that is so interesting.

I take the shapes I see in the spaces, between the branches and ‘draw them out’, (a kind of organic suduko ), the process feels more about ‘freeing’ to me.
I guess also ‘freeing’ the imagination.

There is also the idea of ALL Life being held in ‘Tree’, which I like.

These are, though, ‘shadow branches’ and, the longer this project continues, sometimes I have felt like I am drawing a kind of role-call for all that may be lost in the future.
I also kind of ‘capture’ what I see, as they ARE ‘caught’ in the branches..
I prefer the idea of them being gentley ‘held’ though!

I have long been a bit obessed by ideas that it is the SPACES BETWEEN that defines ALL.
That, as a human-race, we are very obessed with visible matter and inclined not to notice the much larger, ‘invisible’, fields that, to me, surround and define.
This is what I affectionately call ‘the Gap’, and this obsession has fed into the seed of this project!

Then there is the mono-chrome.
The faded, sienna, look of these drawings.

I do love ink and stain, but I also often miss colour, especially now that we are in summer!

But for continuity and ‘the collection’ I feel I must maintain this technique for all 100 of these ‘tree tales’!

So, as others have also commented, they are multi-dimsional little works….

Another aspect worth sharing is how they help to ground me daily in these strange days of ‘not knowing’……

The Old Eucalyptus

in Memoriam of the mature Eucalyptus that leaned out over the road from the gardens of Craigdhu farmhouse
planted? – 2020
succumbed to the sudden south-westerly gales during May’s lockdown of 2020

To the tree,
The tree that marked the exciting promise of youthful shenanigans.
The tree that called me back to a place,
That then welcomed me with open arms
Each time I turned off  the main trunk road along this smaller branching way.
The tree that leaned ever further over all who entered here
As if trying to vet them as they passed.
The tree whose ancestors came from the other side of the world.
Whose presence reminded some, who have settled here, of Home.
The tree that succumbed, eventually, to Wind and Time,
The tree that will forever be growing still, alive and well,
In so many of our memories.

Kat Robertson June 2020

Sadly, these are the best of the photographs I can find of this local tree legend, when it was alive and towering over village B-road.
It was such an iconic landmark for all who lived here.
It felt like a physical blow to see it lying here.

I stopped the car and spent some Time with it.
I ‘asked’ for some bark and a piece of wood that I thought I might try and make a didgeridoo with it….but having researched how to do it I am not sure my skills are up to that! No termites here to have naturally hollowed it out!

The bark looks a bit like a tribal warrior, to me, walking along, when vertical, and reminisent of a local landscape, when horizontal….

Then there came another local, art initiative.
A Craignish ‘lockdown’ postcard art exhibition!
Postcard sized creations on the theme of ‘Craignish Lockdown’.
Blank postcards to be collected from the village shop and returned to the special postbox on the counter, or the co-ordinator…
To be exhibited in the village hall and, hopefully seen, as restrictions to movement and social distancing roles ‘loosen’.
Another wonderful idea!

This is my submission.
In honor of this old freind we have lost during this Time.

I painted the tree, using just the local mud, then hid that behind an aboriginal style, dot-work, design, as a nod to it’s ancestors.

The central ‘dots’ were punched out the bark of the tree itself and stuck on.

I wrote the poem above on the back.

Looking forward to seeing everyone’s ‘lockdown art’ all together… soon’ish’!?

#100treetales (pt 3)

The 100 day project continues!
I have not missed a day so far. Finding this half hour discipline fits quite well with the day’s routine.

These are drawn, direct with permanent, indian ink onto the inkjet print paper. They are not penciled out first.

Only two really tricky ones.
‘goat’ and ‘crow’.
‘goat’ I actually had to re-print and re-draw….sometimes the pen just follows the wrong line!
Or, a better line becomes obvious after a line has been comitted to.

With ‘crow’, more black ink covered a multitude of regrets!

Past the half-way mark now!

(click on first image to view as gallery)

A Joy Spiral for Kathie W.

All in the link!

“What happens when an online sister requests of the world that her freinds connect with each other and create Joy Spirals as her birthday wish. Asks for them to do something, anything!
In this instance, one plays violin, sent the clip to another, who then paints in mud while listening! Never having met before, yet all connecting in the moment. Such fun!! Let us all create Joy Spirals!”
Kat Robertson

Sourdough study

Just realised I missed posting (cataloging) this offering for the Ardfern Lockdown Art Challenge here.

On the theme ‘Bread’

study of sourghdough crumb

#100daystreetales (pt 2)

More from the #100daystreetales

(Working as part of 100 Days Project Scotland 2020.
Pictures posted daily to Facebook profile.)

To view previous ‘days’ and concept on this blog, click here.