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Sunday, June 03, 2012

What on Earth is Land Snorkeling?

'Our Marsh'            6x8      plein air    oil on panel   purchase here $125
I took up Land Snorkeling this weekend.  Actually whenever I travel with my VIP friends we go Land Snorkeling. We just never had a name for our explorations.  I first heard of the phrase at the 1st Annual Plein Air Convention. Artist Clyde Aspevig gave a wonderful and inspiring presentation. He talked about how he and his wife Nancy Guzman gave the name to their exploration of nature. Here is a quote from Clyde which explains the idea:
"Land snorkeling is taking the time to savor aspects of nature we ordinarily don’t see or pay attention to. Land snorkelers wander thru nature with no intention of hiking to a destination. One contemplates what we find in nature and explores every possible connection with all parts of our natural world. Each blade of grass, rock, or creature has some connection to us. We ask questions looking at nature and find out what that connection might be – we develop our cognitive and abstract muscles to solve the problem. We have fun doing it. It helps us to think. Our imagination and creativity is enhanced and richens our lives in a healthy and productive way. It’s free and it’s fun."
On this trip to Saint Simon's Island we spent much of our time Land Snorkleing (and relaxing on the screen porch)  We wandered aimlessly without a map or agenda. We stumbled upon many treasures and had some wonderful moments of being in touch with nature.  We found Harris Neck National Wildlife Preserve where we saw hundreds of nesting wood storks and had the thrill of seeing our first ever Painted Bunting!

A Painted Bunting....Too far for my camera's zoom!
Looking up into the Live Oaks
A treasure on the ground...Broad Head Skink
We avoided the shops in favor of the parks and nature trails. We watched the sunsets over 'Our Marsh' and walked to the beach and looked for beach treasures.  I did make time to walk to the marsh across the street from our house to paint. I spent an afternoon painting and observing the cloud shadows move across the marsh. It was wonderful to stand still for hours and observe the changes of the tides and colors in the marsh. For me the combination of Land Snorkeling and an afternoon of painting was the perfect weekend. I can't wait to grab my camera and land snorkel again!

If you are intrigued by the idea of Land Snorkeling have a look at the website and blog HERE.

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