Our Workshops and Events

What we are doing in our workshops and events

To see current and upcoming events, check out our Upcoming Events page!

Our approach in each of our art workshops is to ‘paint from the heart’ as an expression and a dialogue-starter about climate and nature — and then allow that to enable us to become advocates for protecting and preserving the things we love. In our events, we share educational resources, learn about regional environmental efforts, and discuss how to have conversations about climate change. In our gallery exhibitions, we show and explain our commitment to protect the things we love. In our public events, we encourage everyone to act to preserve our world.
Here is where you can see us in action.

Past Workshops and Events (Below)

To view the galleries and more information for each workshop, click the title or any picture.


“Embracing Emotions through Abstract Watercolors”

On February 13, 20, 27, 2024, participants joined in a workshop that delved into the intersection of abstract art and environmental consciousness, allowing participants to express their emotions and reflections on  through the powerful medium of abstract watercolors.

Theme: The Emotional Landscape of Climate Change In this workshop, we explored some abstract art techniques and discussed the the challenges our planet faces—and what we can do about it. Through abstract art, participants could convey their feelings, fears, and hopes for the future in a visually compelling and evocative manner.



“Painting Native Trees in Watercolor”​

Mary Sue Schwab demonstrating painting techniques painting of tree

On October 27, 2023 in Bloomington, Indiana, Artists for Climate Awareness participants learned how to paint trees in watercolor. In this hands-on workshop, MarySue Schwab demonstrated key approaches to painting native Indiana trees. Students were instructed in multi-layered, wet-on-wet techniques using watercolor processes to create both subtle and dramatic tree formations. Participants used a mixture of warm and cool colors, juxtaposing shadow and form.

During the workshop, Julie Roberts from Canopy Bloomington led a presentation on the importance of native trees in the landscape, and how to plant and care for trees.


“Evoking A Response to Climate Change with the Fine Arts”

Dr. Ben Brabson speaking

Climate change is real. The October 12  presentation, “The Fine Arts: Evoking a Response to Climate Change” was an interplay of scientific and artistic visuals curated and presented by Ben Brabson, climate scientist and Emeritus Professor of Physics at Indiana University.Studies show that using art for communication can raise awareness, provoke impactful dialogue, and inspire action about environmental issues. Brabson’s talk included engaging and artful illustrations that simplify concepts of climate change for ordinary people, making the concepts more concrete, meaningful, and motivating. The presentation was free and was offered both in-person at Ivy Tech Bloomington and online.


Paint Bloomington 2023

Anne Farley Gaines and tutorial  Jars of natural paints

On October 7, 2023, the Second Annual “Paint Bloomington!” featured tutorials by Artists for Climate Awareness artists. The all-day event in Bryan Park, Bloomington, IN included a city-wide plein air paint-out for all, plus free optional art classes.


“Wrapped in Love” Tree Sweater Campaign

Tree sweater on tree tree sweater on tree tree sweater knitting crewOur “Wrapped in Love” tree sweater campaign, designed to benefit Middle Way House of Bloomington, raised $500 and achieved Bronze level recognition. We are using our artistic talents to help victims of domestic violence while also celebrating life-giving trees.

Our knitted tree sweater is now displayed on the Downtown Bloomington Square. For more details, please visit our Facebook and Instagram pages.



Northern California Event: “Natural Pigments Hands-On”

homemade paint from nature

On October 6, Patricia Larenas led a group in making watercolor from soils at this First Friday Event at the Santa Cruz Museum of Natural History in Santa Cruz, CA.



Northern California Event: “Art from Ashes”
at San Vicente Redwoods Preserve

photo of San-Vicen_Lauren-Korth2022

On October 2, 2023, in collaboration with the Peninsula Open Space Trust and the Land Trust of Santa Cruz County, Artists for Climate Awareness facilitated an artist’s day in the Santa Cruz Mountains. NorCal coordinator Patricia Larenas led artists in using ashes from giant burned redwoods in the Santa Cruz CA mountains to create drawings of the devastated redwoods. The workshop was attended by 9 or 10 artists and 3 Park Staff.




Banneker Kids Camp 2023

On a warm week in July of 2023, two Artists for Climate Awareness members led participants of Banneker Kid’s Camp in Bloomington, IN in outdoor craft activities related to the environment.


Anne Farley Gaines Ceramic Demonstration

ceramics by Anne Farley GainesChicago artist Anne Farley Gaines and Artists for Climate Awareness were invited into into the Ivy Tech Ceramics Studio on June 17, 2023 for a free one-day demonstration in which Anne produced a lively ceramic work based on one of her watercolors of nature. The participants created small works of their own. Anne Farley Gaines uses the emotional language of art with thematic environmental education. Her subjects focus on her passions: disappearing coastlines of the Great Lakes, decaying trees uprooted by rising waters from glacier melt, animal species being pushed by climate change to unprecedented areas, forest fires, violent storms, and their aftermath.

A display of Anne’s work is on the Ivy Tech campus in the Fine Arts area, and at The Waldron Arts Center.  All will be available for viewing throughout June and July of 2023.
Learn more about Anne Farley Gaines at https://www.annefarleygaines.com/.



Gallery Show, Performance, and Workshop:  “Conserve Bloomington”

      “Mutations,” by Karen Holtzclaw

A gallery show May 12 – June 11, 2023 at Arts Alliance Center in Bloomington, IN provided environmentally themed art and music to the Bloomington Community. This gallery exhibition, coordinated by Artists for Climate Awareness, was open to all artistic mediums and depicted aspects of nature, environment, and climate change.

On May 12, IU Jacobs School of Music students working on the Conserve Bloomington project introduced their musical composition of nature sounds recorded in and around Bloomington, IN

On Saturday, May 13, in conjunction with the event, internationally known Indiana artist Rena Brouwer led a watercolor workshop, also at the Arts Alliance Center.



“From Watching Birds to Sketching and Painting Them”

Alex Warnick teaching   painting of Ruby Crowned Kinglet bird by Alex Warnick

On Thursday, April 27, internationally known bird artist Alex Warnick delivered a workshop called, “From Watching Birds to Sketching and Painting Them.” The presentation and demonstration largely focused on artistic techniques. During the workshop, there were also conversations about being connected to nature, how we can help wild birds, as well as the importance and interconnectivity of birds with the environment.


“Painting Nature in Wet Pastel”

Avon Waters teaching art  Seascape painting by Sara Steffey McQueen

On March 24 and 25, 2023 in Bloomington, Indiana, Artists for Climate Awareness participants learned how to use soft pastels with various mediums to create works in “wet pastel.” The group experimented with new techniques while sharing stories and learning about caring for the environment.


“Elements: An Exhibition by Artists for Climate Awareness”


Ten members of Artists for Climate Awareness displayed their artwork in the Education Gallery at the John Waldron Arts Center, 122 S. Walnut St., Bloomington, IN, from March 3 – April 11, 2023. The show is in conjunction with two environment-related exhibitions by climate groups and individuals,  named “Climate Shock” and  “Stone Soup: From Nature to Politics.” 


“Painting Deserts in Watercolor”

In “Painting Deserts in Watercolor,” on February 25, 2023 in Bloomington, Indiana, Artists for Climate Awareness people enjoyed painting together, learning about desert conservation, and talking about how to be an advocate for better climate change communication. 


Climate Change in My Backyard: Art from the Heart”

St. Louis workshop participant - 2022 Photo of St. Louis Arch

Artists for Climate Awareness members convened in Carol Carter’s Studio in St. Louis, Missouri on September 24, 2022 for painting, sculpting, and climate education.




Upcoming workshops and events