Salem Arts Festival and Plant Sale
The annual Salem Arts Festival is held the third weekend of July every year. The fair boasts over 200 vendors ranging from garden art, jewelry, food, music and most of all plants! The festival logs approximately 100,000 people in the course of three days. The plant sale is held by Friends of Bush Garden. Everything from annuals, perennials, herbs, potted bulbs, Japanese maples and more abound to delight the senses. One of the highlights of the plant sale is cuttings from the Bush Park/Salem Municipal Rose Garden. Mrs. A.R. Tartar donated part of the 2,000 vintage rose collection selections and they are available for purchase during the festival.
Bringing Nature Indoors
Last year at the festival, I had the good fortune to meet Catherine Alexander, a talented botanical illustration artist. Catherine is indicative of the quality of artists that display and sell their work at the festival yearly. Catherine started at a young age in North Plains, Oregon escaping into the woods surrounding her home with a sketchbook in hand. “Nestled among the red sorrel and Oregon grape”, Catherine explained, “I drew the flowers, plants and critters that I knew and loved.”
I took a series of botanical illustration classes from Catherine this past spring. Mixing my love of garden with a passion for art has been a deeply rewarding experience. Not only can I grow plants in the greenhouse and garden, I now look at them in a new light – as a potential subject for drawing on dreary winter days. Armed with a digital camera, Photoshop, colored pencils, acrylic paint and artists crayons I can capture the fleeting beauty of flowers and leaves forever.
Schedule a day trip down to Salem to enjoy the Salem Arts Festival next July.
Photos taken and mushroom artwork created by Dawn Hummel.