Happy February! The International Crane Foundation is a major sponsor of the 2021 first-ever PBS Wisconsin Virtual Garden & Landscape Expo Feb. 20 and 21.
Our President and CEO Rich Beilfuss and Co-founder George Archibald will be offering their Cranes on the Landscape presentation Sunday, Feb. 21, from 4 to 5 p.m. Central Time. Please visit our website to learn how to register for this free event.
Join us for a fabulous tour of the new George Archibald Welcome Center Gift Shop! The shop is all dressed and ready to show, and I am excited to offer you the opportunity to shop with a “live” and in person feel. I have featured many of the items in the shop during this tour, but be sure to notice ALL of the carefully crafted displays around each featured piece.
The Gallery Wall within the shop is quickly becoming a special place within this space. I am featuring the artwork of many local artists and the opportunity to exhibit some engaging new pieces of art. The ability to purchase prints, notecards and sets of each artist’s works provides you the ownership of fine art at an affordable price!
I am featuring the artwork of local artist, Ellen McGaughey of Lake Delton, Wisconsin. Ellen has been a long-time supporter of the International Crane Foundation as both a volunteer and a contributor of art to the gift shop. She has engaged many of our guests in workshop seminars in art, as well as participated in our special events series, Cranes in Culture. I personally have traveled with Ellen to the Platte River in Nebraska to witness firsthand the migration of over 600,000 Sandhill Cranes on their return to northern breeding grounds. The creative process involved with her art was evident as I watched her observe this incredible spectacle of nature!
Take a moment to read her bio!
Ellen McGaughey has spent a lifetime loving the natural world. She has been creating art based on that love all of her adult life. Ellen is primarily self taught but supplemented her education with art classes at the University of Wisconsin while she lived in Madison for many years. While she was a “city girl”, Ellen, her husband Mark and their two children were avid campers most weekends and vacations from late winter to late fall most years. They camped at every state park in Wisconsin.
During that time Ellen painted everything she saw outside and gradually focused on birds. She painted in acrylics, watercolor and even carved and painted birds in wood. She says the reason was that when back in Madison, birds were the one touch stone to the wild she missed dearly.
When Ellen moved to a cabin in an ancient pine forest in Lake Delton, Sauk County opened a new door for her. Her current home is in the middle of crane country! And she now lives 10 minutes from the International Crane Foundation and the Aldo Leopold Foundation.
With all the available subject matter, Ellen started drawing and painting cranes. While a realist painter, Ellen was interested in the striking angles cranes made and their striking colorations. She is inspired by their stirring calls and enthusiastic dancing.
In recent years she has joined other birders in search of Whooping Cranes that occasionally join flocks of Sandhill cranes prior to their fall migration.
Ellen believes in the strong relationship she has with viewers and owners of her art. She knows they share a spark of a wild experience in this modern world.