Reconnecting with Nature

Well I have lost touch a little with my blog updates as I have swept away with Spring!

I have been mountain biking again…

Here’s an image transfer of a photo I took of Sassy (my bike) having a rest after we rode up a big hill!

Photographic transfer and shellac on paper, 2012

I have been getting back into mountain biking so that I can get fit and keep up with my bike-obsessed Mum and also as a way of developing self-care strategies as part of my journey of becoming a Creative Arts Practitioner and Therapist (CAT). Mountain biking offers me a chance to get out of my head and into my body and also to reconnect with nature. The Australian bush has been a pivotal part of my life, from growing up in the hills of the Maleny in the Sunshine Coast Hinterland, Queensland to my life now, living in regional Victoria and situated next to Mt. Disappointment State Forest. Upon moving to Melbourne 7 years ago, mountain biking became the vehicle that enabled me to get out of the city and into bush – a place of retreat, play and reconnection with my self and others. Art making provided me with a way to reflect upon and make meaning from my experiences in nature.

Natalya Garden, Layers Upon Layers, Yarra River Mud on Paper, 2007


This year I have been part of a collaborative project, working with Maureen Carey from OutDoors Inc. and Erica Gurner from HumaNature Connect, who both have a wealth of experience working in: the outdoors, adult education, community development, in the mental health sector and using the arts.

Art making during an experiential walk at Woodlands Historic Park, Victoria 2012

We have been working hard planning a workshop for the  Creating your next Courageous Steps(Next Steps 2012)” Conference which is run biennially by Australian Association for Environmental Education. Our workshop “Exploring Connections to Nature and Place through Experiential Learning Processes and the Creative Arts” is happening on Tuesday 2nd October at 12:30pm. This workshop will offer participants a chance to reflect upon their experiences in nature and explore what sustainability means to them using creative arts and experiential processes.

This collaborative project has been an opportunity to adapt the procedures I have learnt through my Graduate Diploma and my current Masters study in “Experiential and Creative Arts Practice” at MIECAT, Melbourne and also to learn new ways of working through collaborating with two amazing women.

I will keep you updated about how the workshop goes and also of future events that we will be offering and participating in. For those in my part of the world…enjoy the delights that spring has to offer by getting outdoors and reconnecting with nature!


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