Wildlife Illustrator and Writer
Monday, February 8, 2021,
an ASA Zoom Webinar*
Our speaker is a visual storyteller with a message: “If you practice the art of paying attention, you will find that grand adventures await you right outside your door. Once you start looking, it is hard to stop. From my perspective, paying attention brings care, care brings love; and love engenders protection.”
Combining storytelling, visual art, and science to observe and understand the creatures with whom we share our lives, Beth Surdut will explore our local wildlife and our integrated place in nature. Her talk invites us to observe, with unbounded curiosity, the beings that fly, crawl, and skitter along with us in our changing environment. These include the fierce Harris’s hawk she met outside her kitchen, the zebra-tailed lizard that hitched a ride in her pants, the stinky javelina at the front door, beautiful hummingbirds, well-engineered bats and Gila woodpeckers, misunderstood snakes and coyotes, talkative ravens, great horned owls, and others.
Beth Surdut is an award-winning wildlife illustrator and writer. Certified as an environmental educator by the Arizona Association of Environmental Educators, her primary focus is observing, researching, and illustrating desert denizens, portraying them through art and storytelling. Her “Listening to Raven” illustrated collection of true raven encounters won the 2013 Tucson Festival of Books Literary Award for Non-Fiction. She has experienced many wild environments: she paddled with alligators in Florida, hung from a rope in a mountain fern forest, and kayaked amidst seals and dolphins, thereby coming to understand the creatures we live with. Orion magazine published her illustrated essay on the Las Conchas fire that roared through New Mexico in 2011, destroying high desert habitats. Her solo exhibition of “The Art of Paying Attention” at Tucson Botanical Gardens opens January 30 outdoors and will move indoors into The Friends Gallery September 2021 through mid-January 2022. See her website: http://www.bethsurdut.com.
*For access to the Zoom Webinar, please write firstname.lastname@example.org.
Written by Maria Dobozy, Academy Village Volunteer