How They’re Made

 

Hello! My name is Lorraine Ayre, and I am the creator of Divine Nature Cards. As an avid gardener and wannabee mystic, I work in the medium of nature creating blessing sculptures. The work is meditative, requires great patience, and speaks back to me from a deeper place than my thinking mind. It feels like the devas of the plant world are playing with my inner child, which is also my most natural place of spiritual connection.

I am Buddhist by vow and awe, Christian by gratitude and love, Vedantist by absorption in the silence. I love God with all my heart, and honor the myriad ways that humanity has found to consciously connect with God through Love, Truth, Beauty, and Goodness. I dedicate this artform to the spread of these divine qualities throughout the human experience.

My other great passion in life is vegetable gardening, which I express by sharing the knowledge I’ve gained over the years over at  Vegetable Gardening with Lorraine.

The Artform

On mornings when I am doing a shoot, I arise in the dark, fix tea, and eat an apple while words arise in my head.  When I know what wants to be said, I know how many letters I will need, and therefore how many flowers. I head out with a flashlight to see what I have blooming in the garden. I do a small prayer of gratitude to the plant world and the four directions with tobacco. In May and June, I sometimes head to the mountain or prairie roadsides to collect wildflowers (I live right at the transition zone).  With flowers in hand I return to my desk to clip stems off and create a palette of flowers and petals on an array of 5 x 8 index cards, which I carry  out to the giant piece of flagstone in my backyard.

All collecting, flower prep, sculpting and photography has to be done before the sun hits the flagstone. Once the sun is up, the flowers wilt very quickly  and sharp, distracting shadows appear. And wind, oh the wind! I can empathize with the great Andy Goldsworthy, who often as not watches as his hours (or days!) of work melt, blow away, or crash just before his sculpture is completed.

Shooting always takes longer that I think. The tripod must be positioned as closely above the sculpture as possible, which leads to it being tilted forward almost to the tipping point. I try to shoot at the lowest ISO possible with a reasonable depth of field, and let the shutter speed be whatever it wants.

God bless Lightroom, my favorite program for editing and managing my shots. The only time I use Photoshop is when  dew drips off the apple tree above and makes a big splotch in the middle of a sculpture… then I will clone it out in post-processing. I have also been known to clone out the occasional visiting bug.

You may contact me at (720) 220-9310.

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