‘Wild and Endangered’ Drawing Competition Launched!

Print design of Years 5 & 6 endangered species Biro drawings

Print design of Years 5 & 6 endangered species Biro drawings 2014, inspiration for competition poster design

Judging of ‘Wild and Endangered’ my new drawing competition for school students commenced today!  And what a day!  Piloted at a local primary school in North East England, the competition focuses on developing students drawing skills, whilst learning about endangered species.  The first competition has seen an overwhelming response with nearly every student participating.  The standard of artwork is extremely high with ardor and creative expression evident in each entry, Judging is proving tremendously uplifting and challenging in equal measure!

The competition is simple, “create an A4 drawing made with a drawing medium of your choice, of an endangered species of your choice”.  Entry fee is £1 per entrant.  Profit after prizes goes directly to eminent international wildlife charity the Born Free Foundation and a charity of the school’s choice.  The competition seeks to further encourage children’s natural passion for drawing and animals and was inspired by ‘Drawing for Endangered Species’ workshops.  Donating my time to judge the competition and design a poster from winning and runner’s up entries is an uniquely rewarding experience.

The poster design of students artwork will be presented to the school as an opportunity to raise funds through poster sales.

Competition prizes include:

First Prize:  Signed and numbered framed print of ‘Sweet’.

First Prize signed print of ''Sweet', by Jane Lee McCracken

”Sweet’, by Jane Lee McCracken

Second prize:  Signed and numbered framed print of ‘Malaysian Forest’:

Second Prize signed print of 'Malaysian Forest' by Jane Lee McCracken

‘Malaysian Forest’ by Jane Lee McCracken

Third prize: Signed and numbered framed print of ‘Orangutans’

Third Prize, signed and numbered print of 'Orangutans' by Jane Lee McCracken

‘Orangutans’ by Jane Lee McCracken

Winners and runner’s up will receive a copy of the poster design that includes their artwork. Winners will be announced during the summer term.

A huge thank you to the staff and students of this local school for their hard work and enthusiasm participating in the first competition.

‘Wild and Endangered’ is a project I hope to bring to other schools.  For further information please contact:

jane@janeleemccracken.co.uk

 

 

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365 Days of Animalia

'Malaysian Forest', colour Biro drawing for WCS Malaysia Program by Jane Lee McCracken

‘Malaysian Forest’, 2014 colour Biro drawing Jane Lee McCracken made exclusively for WCS – Malaysia Program 

Living and breathing 365 days devoted to highlighting keystone species and their importance to all of us, have provided exciting encounters with new and very special friends, from pen to paper.  Amoy the South China Tiger, the beautiful Ambassador wolves of the Wolf Conservation Center depicted in American Dream and Rhino 2014 to name but a few creations, have also brought introductions to organisations and people helping to save the kin of these effigies.  Here is a selection of creations and a word about the extraordinary organisations and inspirational individuals working to secure their future:

'Butterfly Lover', black and neon orange Biro drawing made especially for SAVE WILD TIGERS by Jane Lee McCracken

‘Butterfly Lover’, 2014 black and neon orange Biro drawing Jane Lee McCracken made exclusively for Save Wild Tigers

Amoy the South China Tiger of ‘Butterfly Lover’ and Save Wild Tigers (SWT)
SWT founded by Simon Clinton is a global initiative dedicated to saving the last wild tigers, with a contemporary approach to fundraising.  SWT harnesses the power and enlightenment of the creative world, utilising the brilliant work of Artists such as Lauren Baker, Otto Schade, Magnus Gjoen and Mark Powell to help raise funds.  Prof Datuk (Dr) Jimmy Choo, Lauren Baker, Jaime Winstone and Gok Wan form crucial ambassadorial support, firmly placing SWT withIn the public psyche and bringing images of the last wild tigers bright eyes to our fore thoughts.  Meeting the tenacious SWT team has given an insight into just how much a small cost effective and dedicated team can achieve against the adversities of our fast changing world.  The original drawing of Butterfly Lover and Cherry Blossom Girl were auctioned at SWT Thrive, London and Majestic Tiger Ball, Kuala Lumpur respectively.  For further information about SWT visit www.savewildtigers.org. Prints of Amoy and his butterflies are available to purchase from  www.dogonthepitch.co.uk with all profits going directly to SWT.

"Drawing for Endangered Species Workshops" Brochure cover by Jane Lee McCracken

“Drawing for Endangered Species Workshops” brochure cover Jane Lee McCracken with drawings by students from St Peter’s RC Primary School, Scarborough

‘Drawing for Endangered Species’ School Workshops with a percentage of proceeds in aid of the Born Free Foundation (BFF)
The crux of conservation is education.  Fundamental to this is educating younger generations to embrace the rich diversity of our natural planet and protect it, securing our magnificent environment for future generations.  A long standing admiration for the remarkable work of the Born Free Foundation inspired the creation of ‘Drawing for Endangered Species’ School Workshops.  Designed to encourage the natural drawing ability children possess whilst enthusing their natural interest in wildlife, the workshops also provide knowledge about endangered species and ways to stop their decline.  It is a humbling and precious experience to see the wonderment in children’s eyes at the results of their creativity unleashed and their passion for animals.  25 % of fees from each workshop goes directly to BFF for their vital work protecting wildlife.  For further information about BFF please visit www.bornfree.org.uk.  For information about workshops visit www.janeleemccracken.co.uk; for TigerSiberian Tiger and Ice Fox prints being sold in aid of BFF visit www,janeleemccracken.co.uk/shop

 

'Rhino 2014', In Homage to 'Africa', 2014 black Biro drawing Jane Lee McCracken made exclusively for Mark Thorpe and Chengeta Wildlife

‘Rhino 2014’, In Homage to ‘Africa’, 2014 black Biro drawing Jane Lee McCracken made exclusively for Mark Thorpe and Chengeta Wildlife

‘Rhino 2014’ and Film-maker Mark Thorpe of Sea Wild Earth
Enigmatic Emmy Award winning underwater cameraman, Mark Thorpe works on the frontline of conservation film-making, presenting the plight of many threatened species, through his beautifully captured films.  His new film ‘FINdonesia’ headlining the tragedy and fallout of the shark finning industry will be released soon.  ‘Rhino 2014’ was made exclusively for Mark to use in fundraising projects next year for the inspirational Chengeta Wildlife who work to deter the illegal trade in wildlife by protecting species such as rhinos and elephants. An earlier blog post Rhino 2014 reveals the symbolism behind this piece. For further information about Mark’s extraordinary work visit www.seawildearth.com.  For further information about Chengeta Wildlife’s work on the frontline of conservation visit www.chengetawildlife.org.

 

'American Dream', colour Biro drawing, 2014 Jane Lee McCracken exclusively for the Wolf Conservation Center, New York

‘American Dream’, colour Biro drawing, 2014 Jane Lee McCracken made exclusively for the Wolf Conservation Center, New York

‘American Dream’ and the Wolf Conservation Center, New York (WCC)
Stellar environmental education organisation WCC, founded by French classical pianist Helen Grimaud is dedicated to educating people about wolves and protecting wolf species.  Having produced fundraising artwork over the last two years for WCC, it has been a privilege to communicate with the illuminating WCC team including Executive Director Maggie Howell and Curator Rebecca Bose. The opportunity to make artwork of WCC’s Ambassador wolf pack has been truly inspiriting.  This year, a year that has seen US wolves face much adversity in the wild, called for the making of an epic piece that celebrated their beauty as an essential keystone species within the Great American Wilderness.  WCC devotees have been intrinsic in their support and purchases of original donated artwork and prints, with all profits going directly to WCC.  For further information about WCC visit www.nywolf.org.  For information about Atka and America Dream prints visit www.dogonthepitch.co.uk.

'Orang-utans', 2014, black Biro drawing for WCS Malaysia Program

‘Orang-utans’, 2014 black Biro drawing Jane Lee McCracken exclusively for WCS-Malaysia Program

The Beauty of Malaysia Wildlife and WCS-Malaysia Program
WCS-Malaysia Program, part of the Wildlife Conservation Society‘s global operations offices, is an exciting program deeply committed to conserving the beautiful flora and fauna of Malaysia.  Producing work for SWT’s Majestic Tiger Ball, Kuala Lumpur brought about an introduction to WCS-Malaysia Program’s exceptional Director, Melvin Gumal Ph.D. This resulted in the making and donation of a set of Biro drawings depicting endangered Malaysian wildlife for a special conservation manual, primarily involving Malaysian Artist’s and supported by the Malaysian Government and the US embassy – to be published in the coming weeks.  The dedication of the WCS-Malaysia Program team and their drive to conserve Malaysian wildlife is essential to ensuring the rich environmental legacy of the Malayan Peninsula.  Receipt of regular image updates of wildlife captured on film through the use of camera traps from the heart of the Malaysian jungle, is a precious gift indeed!  For more information about WCS-Malaysia Program visit www.wcsmalaysia.

'Clouded Leopards', 2014 black Biro drawing for WCS Malaysia Program

‘Clouded Leopards’, 2014 black Biro drawing Jane Lee McCracken exclusively for WCS – Malaysia Program

While this has been a special year making artwork solely for conservation projects with a return to exploring the theme of ‘loss’ through war and environmental destruction next year, a commitment has been made to continue fundraising through my work for the above organisations. A plan has already been established with Coyote Watch Canada (CWC) thanks to a kind introduction from wildlife supporter David Shellenberger, to make original artwork that will see the arrival of a new friend to join Amoy.  CWC founded by charismatic Lesley Sampson, is pushing boundaries to change attitudes towards coyotes through “education, research, mediation, intervention, and conflict resolution”.  For further information visit www.coyotewatchcanada.com.

Other organisations supported over the last two years and still benefiting from print releases  are The Wolves and Humans Foundation and Butterfly Conservation.

Ongoing Total 

An enormous thank you to everyone who has purchased the original drawings and prints I have created this year, your generosity has raised nearly £10,000 /$15500 for the majority of the above organisations.   Original artworks made for the remaining organisations will be auctioned in the coming months to generate funds for their vital work.   Limited edition prints released this year are available from the above links, limited edition prints of newer/new work will be released next year  – ensuring an ongoing total.

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Gold Tiger drawing, 2014 Jane Lee McCracken

A personal message – none of the above work and fundraising for conservation would have been possible without the support of you Rob, to whom there aren’t enough words to say thank you for your support, understanding and personal passion for wildlife.

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‘BUTTERFLY LOVER’ Luxury Large Format Prints for SAVE WILD TIGERS

 

'Butterfly Lover', Luxury large format Archival Pigment Print of original Biro drawing by Jane Lee McCracken

‘Butterfly Lover’, Luxury large format Archival Pigment Print of original Biro drawing by Jane Lee McCracken, 2014

20 LUXURY LARGE FORMAT Archival Pigment Prints on Hahnemühle Photo Rag 308gsm of ‘Butterfly Lover’ are now AVAILABLE in aid of  SAVE WILD TIGERS.

Beautifully crafted to order by one of the finest master printmakers in the UK, Jack Lowe, these 50cm x 50cm limited edition, signed and numbered prints are reproduced from my original black and neon orange Biro drawing.

With less than 3500 tigers left in the wild, ALL profits of each print sale will be donated to SAVE WILD TIGERS helping to raise funds for their vital work, saving tigers in the wild.

Prints retail at £225 including P&P.

For enquiries & print orders please visit my online SHOP.

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‘Butterfly Lover’ is part of my triptych ‘THE LEGEND OF THE LAST SOUTH CHINA TIGER’ which was written and drawn especially for SAVE WILD TIGERS ‘Thrive’ Exhibition, curated by Lauren Baker, 14th – 18th May 2014, Sanderson Hotel, London and Tiger Dinner Auction at the Mango Tree 20th May, 2014.   For further information about SAVE WILD TIGERS please visit their website.

South China Tiger Legend for Save Wild Tigers

 

“DRAWING for Endangered Species” School Workshops in aid of the BORN FREE FOUNDATION

"Drawing for Endangered Species Workshops" Brochure cover by Jane Lee McCracken

“Drawing for Endangered Species Workshops” brochure cover by Jane Lee McCracken and Jack Lowe Studio

This week sees the launch of an inspirational school workshop project ‘Drawing for Endangered Species’ which shares my great passion for drawing and animals.  25% of each workshop fee will be donated to the Born Free Foundation in aid of the vital work they do for wildlife.

'Chimpanzee', Jemma aged 8, East Lothian, black Biro drawing

‘Chimpanzee’, Jemma aged 8, East Lothian, black Biro drawing

Children possess a natural passion for drawing and interest in animals.  In creating an art and educational based workshop, I hope by enthusing children to express themselves through drawing, to create a domain where individual interest and awareness of threatened wildlife and habitats thrives, and continues into adulthood.  Schools give fundamental education to children about the environment and my workshops are designed to respond to individual school curriculums.  I believe teaching children about environmental issues just as I was fortunate enough to be enthused as a child, helps secure a broader understanding for preserving beautiful habitats and wildlife each generation has the privilege to inherit.

'Brown Bears', In Homage to the Last Great Carnivores of Eurasia', black Biro drawing by Jane Lee McCracken

‘The Orphans’, Brown Bears, In Homage to the Last Great Carnivores of Eurasia’, black Biro drawing by Jane Lee McCracken

The workshops are inspired by my recent drawing series ‘In Homage to the Last Great Carnivores of Eurasia’.  Bringing a small pop-up exhibition of my Biro drawings to the classroom and encouraging students’ drawing skills, the workshops also explore positive ways children can help save endangered and threatened species through an interactive science based discussion. Students are then given the opportunity to celebrate the beauty of endangered species through an expressive drawing session using colour Biros.

Year 5, St Peter's Roman Catholic School, Scarborough with their artwork produced during 'Drawing for Endangered Species' workshop

Year 5, St Peter’s Roman Catholic School, Scarborough with their artwork produced during ‘Drawing for Endangered Species’ workshop

Endangered Species badges for each student using an image of their drawing made during workshops are also included.

Endangered Species badges with artwork by Year 5, St Peter's Roman Catholic School, Scarborough

Endangered Species badges with artwork by Year 5, St Peter’s Roman Catholic School, Scarborough

For bookings and enquiries or to receive a brochure with further information about workshops please contact jane@janeleemccracken.co.uk

A huge thank you to brilliant art teacher Mrs Haddington of St Peter’s Roman Catholic School, Scarborough for all her help with this project and to Head Teacher Mrs Louise Finlay, her staff and the students of Year 5 for so generously welcoming a pilot workshop to their school and for all the beautiful artwork they produced.  Also to Jack Lowe Studio for all the hard work and help completing the brochure design.

And an enormous thank you to the Born Free Foundation for supporting this project.  For further information about the Born Free Foundation and the inspirational work they do please visit their website at  www.bornfree.org.uk

'Siberian Tiger', 'Ice Fox' and 'Tiger', limited edition archival pigment prints

‘Siberian Tiger’, ‘Ice Fox’ and ‘Tiger’, limited edition archival pigment prints

In conjunction with this project I will be donating ALL profits made from the sales of the three limited edition archival pigment prints above, beautifully crafted to order by Jack Lowe Studio, to the Born Free Foundation.  Prints are priced at £40 each plus postage – for further details please visit my shop.

 

THE LEGEND OF THE LAST SOUTH CHINA TIGER: PART TWO

'Butterfly Lover', black and neon orange Biro drawing made especially for SAVE WILD TIGERS by Jane Lee McCracken

‘Butterfly Lover’, black and neon orange Biro drawing made especially for SAVE WILD TIGERS by Jane Lee McCracken

THE LEGEND OF THE LAST SOUTH CHINA TIGER

PART II Butterfly Lover’, (Drawing Two donated to SAVE WILD TIGERS)

Amoy has survived and thrived under the protection of the Tigress Warriors and grown into the most magnificent male tiger that ever lived in China.  He rolls on his back in the sunshine and plays with butterflies.  Softly the music of the ‘Butterfly Lovers Violin Concerto’ drifts over him and turns into musical notes glistening on his sleek fur.  Then, the butterflies begin to transform and suddenly the beautiful face of Zhu Yingtai appears on the wings of the first butterfly.  Amoy is so entranced by her beauty, he begins to dream of a mate.  All of a sudden the face of the most beautiful tigress he could ever imagine emerges on the wings of the second butterfly.  Zhu Yingtai and Liang Shanbo, the ‘Butterfly Lovers’, begin to appear on his fur.  Amoy smiles – he rolls over and dreams of his mate and the survival of his species, and continues to play with butterflies.

(Written especially for SAVE WILD TIGERS The Legend of the Last South China Tiger  accompanies a drawing diptych, of which the second drawing ‘Butterfly Lover’ has been donated to Save Wild Tigers and will be exhibited alongside the work of 20 inspirational artists, curated by Lauren Baker, in ‘THRIVE’ Exhibition, Sanderson Hotel, London, 14th – 19th May and auctioned at the Mango Tree Tiger Dinner, 20th May)

Postscript

I wrote this legend especially for Save Wild Tigers‘Yin and Yang’ was inspired by images from the films ‘Crouching Tiger Hidden Dragon’, Ang Lee, 2000, ‘Hero’, Zhang Yimou, 2002, ‘House of the Flying Daggers’, Zhang Yimou, 2004, ‘Red Cliff’, John Woo, 2008 and ‘2046’, Wong Kar-wai, 2004.  Taking still photographs of all five films I used these images as inspiration for this drawing. Chinese actresses Zhang Ziyi and Faye Wong become the Goddesses in the clouds of Yang.  The fate of some captive South China tigers is reflected on the sword of the most powerful Tigress Warrior.  ‘Butterfly Lover’ the second drawing made specially for Save Wild Tigers, was inspired by the epic and moving ‘Butterfly Lovers Violin Concerto’, Chen Gang and He Zhanhao, 1959 (梁祝小提琴协奏曲 the Chinese title appearing on the fur of Amoy’s shoulder).  The face of the heroine Zhu Yingtai from the old Chinese legend ‘Butterfly Lovers’ is that of Faye Wong from ‘2046’. The drawings symbolise the fate of the South China tiger subspecies, which is thought to only survive in captivity but also carries a message of hope, that Save Wild Tigers are working tirelessly to ensure other tiger subspecies will continue to play with butterflies.

There are less than 3500 tigers left in the wild and thought to be no South China Tigers surviving in the wild.   Join SAVE WILD TIGERS today and help save wild tigers!

20 limited edition archival pigment prints of ‘Butterfly Lover’, made by Jack Lowe Studio will be available to purchase from 14th May with ALL profits donated to Save Wild Tigers.  ‘South China Tiger’ diptych will be released later this year as part of my fine China limited edition plate series “In Homage to the Last Great Carnivores of Eurasia” to celebrate the majesty of tigers and highlight their decline through wildlife crime.

THE LEGEND OF THE LAST SOUTH CHINA TIGER: PART ONE

'Yin and Yang', black and neon orange Biro drawing by Jane Lee McCracken

‘Yin and Yang’, black and neon orange Biro drawing by Jane Lee McCracken

THE LEGEND OF THE LAST SOUTH CHINA TIGER

(Written especially for SAVE WILD TIGERS The Legend of the Last South China Tiger  accompanies a drawing diptych, of which the second drawing has been donated to Save Wild Tigers and will be exhibited alongside the work of 20 inspirational artists, curated by Lauren Baker, in ‘THRIVE’ Exhibition, Sanderson Hotel, London, 14th – 19th May and auctioned at the Mango Tree Tiger Dinner, 20th May)

 

Yin and Yang’, Drawing One

And so the legend of the last wild South China tiger begins …

Under the constellation of the White Tiger of the West, protected by the sacred Tigress Warriors of Yin, the last wild South China tiger cub, Amoy cowers behind the most powerful of the Tigress Warriors. Amoy can hear the reverberation of horses’ hooves coming closer. In the East under the constellation of the Azure Dragon, the warriors of Yang ride out in search of Amoy. Clouds of dust raised by the galloping cavalry form Goddesses of Love in the sky, anticipating his capture, for the Azure Dragon prizes the bones of the White Tiger’s children. Misguidedly he thinks tiger parts cure disease and heighten passion and has slain Amoy’s relatives one by one.   But the Tigress Warriors are brave and fearless and their swords are sharp. Amoy’s eyes widen with fear as the cavalry draws closer…

Part Two of the legend and the second drawing will be revealed soon…

There are less than 3500 tigers left in the wild and thought to be no South China Tigers surviving in the wild.  But the inspirational SAVE WILD TIGERS UK charity is working tirelessly to save the last remaining wild tigers.  Join them today and help save wild tigers!

20 limited edition archival pigment prints of the second donated drawing, made by Jack Lowe Studio will be available from 14th May with ALL profits donated to Save Wild Tigers.  ‘South China Tiger’ diptych will be released later this year as part of my fine China limited edition plate series “In Homage to the Last Great Carnivores of Eurasia” to celebrate the majesty of tigers and highlight their decline through wildlife crime.

‘THRIVE’ an Inspirational Exhibition for SAVE WILD TIGERS!

 

'Shh, it's a Tiger!', luxury fine English china plate by Jane Lee McCracken

‘Shh, it’s a Tiger!’,  Siberian Tiger, ‘In Homage to the Last Great Carnivores of Eurasia’, luxury fine English china plate by Jane Lee McCracken made by THE NEW ENGLISH, Stoke-on-Trent

On 20th May 2014 Save Wild Tigers, an incredible organisation dedicated to saving the worlds last remaining wild tigers will be holding an auction dinner of tiger inspired artwork at the Mango Tree, London.  ‘THRIVE’, a unique and inspirational exhibition of this artwork, made by 20 artists will be shown from 14th – 19th May at the Sanderson Hotel, London.

SJGC1484_SWT_ArtEx_Flyer_A5_v4.indd

I feel exceptionally privileged that a new piece of work made specially for Save Wild Tigers will be exhibited in THRIVE alongside a group of amazing artists and their tiger artwork, curated by exceptional multimedia artist Lauren Baker.

When I was a wee girl tigers were already endangered.  In the mid 1970s after reading that the Caspian Tiger was thought to be extinct I wrote to a company whose advertising campaigns featured a tiger, to ask if they were helping save tigers.  It seemed logical to a child that if a company used an endangered animal in its advertising they must be donating some of their profit to conserve tigers.  I didn’t receive a reply.  By the time the company was donating towards tiger conservation in the 1990s, I was driving tube trains on the Northern Line and still hoping I could do something to help wild tigers.  After all how can we look ourselves in the mirror as a species if we don’t try to save one of the most beautiful and iconic animals on the planet.

Save Wild Tigers is a incredibly innovative organisation who work tirelessly to raise funds which “go directly to targeted and critical tiger conservation projects that make a real difference” including the Born Free Foundation and the Environmental Investigation Agency.  Save Wild Tigers actively encourage people to get involved in helping to save tigers – from artists and other creatives to tiny tigers of our younger generations.

'Shh, it's a Tiger!' and 'Bang!', Siberian tiger luxury fine china plate diptych by Jane Lee McCracken

‘Shh, it’s a Tiger!’ and ‘Bang!’, Siberian tiger “In Homage to the Last Great Carnivores of Eurasia” luxury fine china plate diptych by Jane Lee McCracken made by THE NEW ENGLISH, Stoke-on-Trent

Since pledging the second Biro drawing in a new diptych of South China Tigers for the next two plates in my ceramics series, I have written my own tiger legend especially for Save Wild Tigers.  The drawing will be revealed after the exhibition opening.  A luxury limited edition series of 20 archival pigment prints of the drawing made by master printmaker Jack Lowe Studio will be available to purchase with ALL profits donated to Save Wild Tigers.  Plates No.1 of ‘Shh, it’s a Tiger!’ and ‘Bang!’ will also be auctioned on the 20th of May.

Thank you Save Wild Tigers for all your hard work saving tigers and for including my work in your inspirational exhibition!

'Our Forefathers' and ''Our Loss', Amur Leopard 'In Homage to the Last Great Carnivores of Eurasia', luxury fine English china plate series by Jane Lee McCracken