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Blue Ecology
Recent Activity
Michael Blackstock launched a new ebook "How to make a good decision: a five step guide to making everyday decisions." Go to www.howtomakeagooddecision.com Continue reading
Posted Jun 12, 2015 at Blue Ecology
Michael has an art show in Kamloops, BC @Ya Bubble Tea and Coffee https://www.facebook.com/pages/YA-Bubble-Tea-Coffee/1415250605423173 Continue reading
Posted Jul 17, 2014 at Blue Ecology
I have had the great pleasesure of being the artist in residence at Echo Valley Ranch and Spa for two years now. The body of work that I have created there has grown into a walk-about show, through the forest, buildings and ranch grounds. You will find my art in the trees, on trees, in the spa, lodge and in "room 12." Guests can now use a pamphlet to self guide their art tour. My art is created to be viewed in a certain viewing context. Echo Valley Ranch and Spa is a magical place to create and view art. Continue reading
Posted Jan 9, 2014 at Blue Ecology
Face in the Forest @Toba Inlet, BC. Great article about a special tree carving done by the Klahoose First Nation. http://klahoose.org/klahoose-cultural-modified-tree-ceremony/ Continue reading
Posted Dec 3, 2013 at Blue Ecology
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I have now completed my client's "Winking Man" mask, made of yellow cedar, copper, horse hair sourced from Echo Valley Ranch, and a lovel mine-cut diamond. This mask is meant to be a jovial, traditional northwest coast mask design. As I carved the mask, the client received photos, updating him on the progress, to feel part of the art-making process. Continue reading
Posted Sep 9, 2013 at Blue Ecology
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Here is an "in-progress" photo of a mask I am working on for a client. It is made of yellow cedar, and is called "Winking Man". Continue reading
Posted Aug 17, 2013 at Blue Ecology
Posted Aug 8, 2013 at Blue Ecology
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My son Matthew and I completed the tree carving "Spirit Horse", at Echo Valley Ranch and Spa! The carving covers 2/7th of the circumference of the tree, below the 33% guideline I use to make sure the carving does not affect the tree's growth. The tree is a Douglas-fir. The carving has real horse hair, thanks Biscuit (i.e. an Echo Valley Ranch horse), and a glass eye. The image of the horse was inspired by photos by Raphael Macek, a Brazilian horse photographer. First Nations people commonly believe that a "white" animal like a buffalo, raven or horse has special... Continue reading
Posted Jul 28, 2013 at Blue Ecology
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Here are some photos of works-in-progress at Echo Valley Ranch and Spa. The "Grandmother Tree" was started on June 28th, 2013, on a stately Douglas-fir tree. The "Spirit Horse" was started on July 1st, 2013, Canada Day on a Douglas-fir tree beside the horse stable. A "thank you" ceremony was held before each carving was started, to acknowledge the tree's role in the artistic process. A special ceremony was held for "Spirit Horse" as I wanted the wranglers to imbibe the spirit of the horse in the carving. My son Matthew is shown in the Spirit Horse photo, as he... Continue reading
Posted Jul 10, 2013 at Blue Ecology
Attitude: It costs you nothing to change your attitude! Too often I hear a corporate or government spokesperson tell the public that it is too expensive to update old equipment with more modern environmentally-friendly equipment; or change their development plans to take into account and accomodate critical water habitat. But to me, it costs nothing to change your attitude towards water. Once the attitude-switch is made, the fresh ideas will flow. Continue reading
Posted Mar 28, 2013 at Blue Ecology
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Here is a mask I did for the Echo Valley Ranch and Spa. The ranch is locates along side the Marble Mountain Range which has a Karst geology. Consquently there is a strong current of underground water, which result in numerous springs on the ranch. I was inspired to carve this mask by the springs @EVR. Continue reading
Posted Mar 13, 2013 at Blue Ecology
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Here is the completed fountain, sans eau. I am waiting for the weather to warm up so I can install the pump and get it going! Continue reading
Posted Feb 25, 2013 at Blue Ecology
The Blue Ecology vision for water has been published by the University of British Columbia Press in a chapter of the newly released book "Aboriginal Peoples and the Forest Lands of Canada". Michael D. Blackstock has summarized his past 16 years of independent research and added some important new content. This chapter lays out the reason why he beielves Western Science needs to re-write the definition of an ecosystem to recognize water's central role in nurturing life on our planet. He lays out his vision and operating principles for natural resource management. The chapter includes photo's of the indigenous Elder's... Continue reading
Posted Feb 15, 2013 at Blue Ecology
As artist in residence for Echo Valley Ranch, I am sculpting a fountain out of Brazilian soapstone. The design of this fountain is based on the theory of Theodor Schwenk, author of Sensitive Chaos. He developed the flowform concept which mimics water's natural meandering flow from the mountain to the sea. This fountain is about 60% complete. It has two types of soapstone (blue and brown) and will have patina copper facia on the waterfall tower. I am carving it in my carport in minus 10 celcius usually. The project will be complete in time for the opening of the... Continue reading
Posted Jan 28, 2013 at Blue Ecology
Yup, I am on Twitter now! @Blueecology hashtag #blueecology is tweetable now :) Continue reading
Posted Jan 25, 2013 at Blue Ecology
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Here is the the "Copper Drop Spring" tree carving, at Echo Valley Ranch and Spa , in the winter. Continue reading
Posted Jan 4, 2013 at Blue Ecology
Similar to Berndnaut Smilde's "Indoor Cloud", people are very curious about the "Rain Room" installation. In Ernest Callenbach's 1975 book "Ecotopia" he envisioned a new San Fransico, with streams and falls running down main boulevards. People like to gather at the waters. Our urban architectect and urban planners need to bring back water into our communities. Blue Ecology is about instilling respect for water, and architects and community planners can play a pivotal role in this vision. I imagine clear glass pipes spiralling through our homes, on the face of (i.e. not hidden behind) our kitchen and living room walls.... Continue reading
Posted Dec 24, 2012 at Blue Ecology
Berndnaut Smilde's indoor cloud installation is a great example of an artist providing a poignant perspective on water. It brings nature indoors. The juxaposition of the cloud and an architectural (human) interior is wonderful. It symbolizes what Blue Ecology is about: interweaving different perspectives on water, like art and science. My tree carving work is the opposite, but same, to Berndnaut's. I create a human face on a living tree, which grabs the viewer's attention because of the "shifted" viewing context. I believe that architects and artists can help people appreciate and respect water by integrating water features into architecture.... Continue reading
Posted Nov 4, 2012 at Blue Ecology
Check out the new blog at EVR introducing their new artist in residence! The new project, on the go, is a soapstone flowform fountain. The design is inspired by Theodor Schwenk, author of Sensitive Chaos. Michael is working on the prototype now and will carve the fountain out at EVR next spring and summer. The fountain will evoke the senses, and it will be a place for one person to sit and be alone and meditate with the sound of water. Continue reading
Posted Sep 19, 2012 at Blue Ecology
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While I was at Echo Valley Ranch carving the "Ancient Spring" tree, a wildfire broke out on August 21, 2012. The staff of the Wildfire Management Branch aggressively fought the fire and saved the ranch and the tree carvings. Thank you to the WMB, air tanker and helicopter pilots! They are guradians of the guardians. Continue reading
Posted Aug 24, 2012 at Blue Ecology
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This tree carving was done August 21-22, 2012 at Echo Valley Ranch, British Columbia. My son Matthew and I created this, the third tree carving of a series, on a Douglas Fir tree located on the ranch beside a deeply welled spring. This carving is less than a third of the circumference of the tree, so the tree will be bale to function well. This is carving is meant to show respect to spring water, and be the guardian of this ancient spring. As the author of the book Faces in the Forest, it was great for me to create... Continue reading
Posted Aug 24, 2012 at Blue Ecology
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This carving was done on Aug 11-13 at Echo Valley Ranch, British Columbia. It is on an unusually big and healthy Aspen (poplar) tree. The furrowed bark was almost 4 cm deep, so I incorporated the bark into the carving. My sons David and Matthew assisted me. You can read more about art created on living trees in my book Faces in the Forest. This carving, like the "Copper Drop" one, is meant to honour and guard the springs. On August 22nd, a ceremony was lead by Percy Rossete a Secwepemc spiritual leader, at this carving. Percy says this tree... Continue reading
Posted Aug 17, 2012 at Blue Ecology
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Here is a photo of the carving on the spruce tree, about 45 days later. The healthy spruce, rooted right beside a beautiful spring, is healing itself and adding it's own contribution to the art. I made sure I only affected 25 percent of the circumference so the tree could easily heal itself. This is a very dynamic art form. Continue reading
Posted Aug 17, 2012 at Blue Ecology
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I carved this image in a spruce tree beside Copper Drop spring, Echo Valley Ranch, British Columbia. It is a spring water guradian spirit. This was carved over a three day period, July 2-4, 2012. My son Matthew assisted. This was the first tree carving I have done, and it is based on my research for the book I wrote "Faces in the Forest: First Nations Art Created on Living Trees" (McGill-Queen's Univ. Press, 2001). Continue reading
Posted Jul 20, 2012 at Blue Ecology