Royal National Park Environmental Education Centre logo

Royal National Park Environmental Education Centre

Royal National Park Environmental Education Centre

Telephone02 9542 1951

Artists in nature

Creative Arts – Visual Arts

Program overview

Students will gain a deeper understanding of how to create interesting and engaging artworks using nature as their guide. Using the Elements and Principles of Art, students will develop a rich source of ideas to create and appreciate both art and nature.  

Key syllabus outcomes


  • represent the qualities of experiences and things that are interesting or beautiful by choosing among aspects of subject matter (CA-VAS2.1)
  • use the forms to suggest the qualities of subject (CA-VAS2.2)
  • acknowledge that artists make artworks for different reasons and that various interpretations are possible (CA-VAS2.3)
  • identify connections between subject matter in artworks and what they refer to, and appreciate the use of particular techniques (CA-VAS2.4)

Learning experiences

Ephemeral art

Students are guided on a nature walk where they observe their surrounding environments. They identify art elements such as form, texture, contrast, symmetry, pattern and how they can be found in nature. Students select and collect objects they find along the path before discussing the work of ephemeral artists such as Andy Goldsworthy. Afterwards students create and photograph their own ephemeral art.

Print making

Students work both collaboratively and individually to create artworks. They explore a range of media and techniques and assemble materials in a variety of ways. These may include:

  • leaf printing
  • leaf and bark rubbing
  • exploring and experimenting with natural objects to apply paint or ink
  • leaf printed clay ornaments

Nature journaling

Students learn about the practice of nature journaling. They use this fun, relaxing practice to connect more closely with nature and create their own unique nature journal. Both the practice and the end product are important as students will learn to capture a moment and pay close attention to detail and appreciation of nature. Students use a range of tools and materials to bring their sketches to life. 

Program feedback

"In science we are looking at plants and pollinators, so focusing on plants was beautifully connected."

Recommended excursion site