Creating Custom Art From The Forces of Nature.

Like the proverbial Phoenix rising from the ashes, Kären Bagnard’s “Dazzle” – a peacock depicted on wood – emerged from the destructive windstorm that downed nearly 300 trees at the Los Angeles County Arboretum in Arcadia, California.

On the first anniversary of the storm, a unique art exhibit “Forces of Nature” opened in November 2012. Featuring works of art created from the fallen trees, the exhibition served as a unique way to raise funds to buy new trees and restore the haven that the Arboretum provides to the people of Los Angeles County.

As one of the artists invited to participate in this endeavor, Kären faced the challenge of working in a new medium – wood. After selecting a Crimean Linden stump, which she sanded to the smoothness of paper, her canvas was ready.

Taking her inspiration from the famous residents of the Arboretum, Kären originally sketched her peacock in pencil. The application of watercolor and ink washes started to give life to the brightly colored feathers of iridescent blues, greens, browns, and gold. Then, the finished line work of permanent ink and dimensional paints was washed over with “crystal water” to give the piece its beautiful shimmer.

Finally, faux jewels and glass were applied to create an effect that is truly dazzling.

“Dazzle” is a wonderful example of Kären’s custom artwork and community involvement. With a portfolio that includes book illustrations, stained glass projects, and murals, Kären Bagnard’s custom artwork and her More Than Mermaids greeting card line are filled with the magic of her creative spirit.