Artist Ed Anderson will lead his final Art Journal Walk on Friday, June 28. Photo provided
Artist Ed Anderson will lead his final Art Journal Walk on Friday, June 28. Photo provided

Ding” Darling artist “in residence” will offer his second and final free Art Journal Walk Friday, June 28, at the refuge. The schedule for three remaining Pop-up Art Studios on Wildlife Drive is included below.

Working from his temporary studio at Blind Pass on Sanibel Island, wildlife artist Ed Anderson from Boise, Idaho, has been conducting an eight-week artist “in residence” educational program at the refuge. “Ding” Darling Wildlife Society-Friends of the Refuge (DDWS) is hosting the program as part of the refuge’s ongoing 75th anniversary celebration.

Anderson sets up on Wildlife Drive to sketch and interact with visitors on the remaining select Tuesdays (June 25) and Thursdays (June 20 and 27) from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Look for the “Artist in Action” banner that marks Anderson’s Pop-Up Art Studio.

On June 28, Anderson will introduce participants to his unique style of extemporaneous art and travel journaling with a 10 a.m. briefing in the “Ding” Darling Visitor & Education Center Auditorium. The program is free, but limited to the first 20 arrivals.

Participants will receive a free journal to carry with them as they follow Anderson on an art and nature learning adventure along Indigo Trail to the Wildlife Education Boardwalk. Note: Wildlife Drive is closed to the public on Fridays.

Our refuge was created by conservation artist Jay Norwood ‘Ding’ Darling in 1945, so it’s more than fitting that we begin celebrating our 75th anniversary with interpretive art programs,” said supervisory refuge ranger Toni Westland. “Darling, who created the Federal Duck Stamp program, designed the first duck stamp and the refuge system’s Blue Goose logo. He won the Pulitzer Prize twice for his popular political cartoons throughout the 1920s and 30s.”

Anderson has also been mentoring youth groups, including a mural project onsite at Quality Life Center of Southwest Florida in Dunbar and a PACE Center for Girls art workshop at the refuge. The Gardner Families sponsored the PACE Center event along with DDWS.

Anderson’s work this spring and summer will culminate in a free exhibition of his journals and art starting in mid-February 2020 in the “Ding” Darling Visitor & Education Center auditoriums, on the heels of the Clyde Butcher 75th Anniversary Photographic Exhibition Nov. 13 through Feb. 5.

I am excited to be inspired by some of ‘Ding’ Darling’s most famous conservation cartoons as part of my body of work at the refuge,” said Anderson. “Darling could be considered one of the original wildlife doodling storytellers, and that’s essentially how I work.”

Anderson’s fine art hangs in the homes of collectors and has been published in publications around the United States including Gray’s Sporting Journal, Backcountry Journal, and, locally, Gulfshore Life. In the interest of conservation, he has donated his work to DDWS, Bonefish & Tarpon Trust, Captains for Clean Water, and various other non-profits. He has been visiting Sanibel Island since his childhood, for more than 40 years.

For more information about Anderson’s work, visit edandersonart.com. To keep up to date on the refuge’s 75th anniversary celebration, visit ding75.org. To sponsor refuge 75th anniversary events, contact DDWS Executive Director Birgie Miller at 239-472-1100 ext. 4 or director@dingdarlingsociety.org.