SOUTH RYEGATE — Created three decades ago, Vermont PBS has pulled “Drawing From Nature” out of the archives and will air a Vermont-produced television series focusing on Vermont’s renowned children’s book author and illustrator Jim Arnosky.
The series will be featured on VT PBS’ ongoing series called “From Our Archives.” The first of the four-part series of “Drawing from Nature: with Jim Arnosky” is “Drawing Water” which will air September 4, at 7 pm on Vermont PBS and also a second airing on Vermont PBS Plus on September 5 at 10 p.m.
Originally, the series aired on Vermont ETV (today known as Vermont PBS) in October 1987, showcasing the talents of a Vermont-based cinematographer, producer and the host.
Based on his 1982 “Drawing from Nature” book that highlighted the methods Arnosky used to teach himself to draw that were science and nature based. He is still works on the same premise. At 73, Arnosky is writing, drawing, painting and has written and illustrated 104 books.
The concept of the TV show was inviting viewers to see how Arnosky works. Out in the field, literally, in nature learning, absorbing, sketching and then taking that into his drawing room and creating art and books.
In the first half of each one-hour episode, Arnosky stressed the natural history aspect, learning how things grow and move. He would show viewers how to study a fish in the river or a vine growing. Then the second half of the show was shot in his studio. “I would create a large drawing to duplicate the things we had seen in the first half of the show, outdoors.”
Over three decades, his “Drawing From Nature” and “Drawing Life in Motion” books are classic and timeless, used repeatedly in schools, libraries, workshops, and by artists of all ages.
Now a leading iconic nature and science author, Arnosky’s books are sold all over the world and he travels the United States visiting schools and libraries. His website is unique and informative that he has developed over the last 20 years. He knew that the Drawing From Nature TV series should be a part of today’s teaching.
VTPBS began working on digitizing the series this year. They completed the work in July and slated it for a September airing.
With today’s technology, readers of his books will have the four-part series as a tool. Teachers and librarians who already use his books in classrooms can use the TV series repeatedly. Having the series streamed online makes it accessible always. Drawing From Nature episodes will also be available to stream on a rolling basis starting the day each one first airs at https://www.vermontpbs.org/fromthearchives/, then scroll down under the “Featured Series” header.
Arnosky’s series is also on the Vermont Archive Movie Project Database, joint effort between Vermont PBS and Vermont International Film Foundation (VTIFF) to provide public access to the state’s productions.
Vermont PBS and PBS Plus will be airing the series through September. Episode 2, Drawing Land #2 will be aired September 11, at 7 pm on Vermont PBS, September 12 at 10 p.m. on Vermont PBS Plus; Drawing Plants #3, September 18, at 7 pm on Vermont PBS, September 19 at 10 pm on Vermont PBS Plus; Drawing Animals #4, September 25, at 7 pm on Vermont PBS, September 26 at 10 pm on Vermont PBS Plus.
The book that the series is based on is available through Amazon’s Kindle Direct Print on Demand.