Category Archives: outdoors

The Color Green: Many Shades, Many Meanings

When people share their favorite colors, green seems to be a popular pick. But it doesn’t need to be favored for people to notice it. Green is everywhere.

The Many Shades of Green

In its natural form, green is seen in the grass and trees. What about the shades of green that exist in between?

When green is combined with hints of other colors it can be powerful. For instance, green with some blue creates a vibrant shade which is often associated with growth. Here are some other shades of green that evoke strong feelings, too.

  • Green and brown is a popular choice when it comes to camouflage patterns.
  • Green with hints of orange and yellow is a great shade in springtime. It is often seen with fruits and fresh foods.
  • When purple is added to green, the hue becomes rich and stylish. Certain fashion trends ensure this green is often the focal point of seasonal lines.

Green is everywhere. It is evident in almost anything. It can be warm or cool, dark or bright. But the roots of this color go deeper than what meets the eye. In many cultures, green is a symbol people hold dear. Green represents great characteristics of nature like balance, harmony and stability.

Using Green for Home Décor

Ancient traditions are known to use shades of green in their décors. Feng Shui is a popular practice that calls on the natural elements of green. The Chinese philosophy of Feng Shui relies of harmony. This means that green is used often to offer perfect balance to other elements.

One place where it is recommended to use green is the front door. It is believed that the front door sets the tone for the entire house. In China, green is linked to an abundant life. Growth, sunrise and other signs of renewal are also associated with green. Painting a front door with this hue is a great way to share positivity with the world.

What do you see when you are face to face with the color green? Do you take time to appreciate the color of nature all around you? Stop and look. Green is everywhere. When you take time to notice it, recognize the effect this color has on you. Does it renew your energy and refresh your soul? If yes, it may soon become your favorite color.

Read more Segmation blog posts about the color green: 

Green Represents Saint Patrick’s Day

Welcome Spring with a Freshly Painted Front Door

Studying the Shades of Green

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Sunflowers are Summer’s Glory

Sunflowers are Summer’s GloryAre you enjoying the act of gardening this summer? Do you like to water plants, till soil, and watch flowers sway with a warm breeze? What does your garden have growing in it this time of year?

Sunflowers are a main attraction in many yards. Helianthus (as they are scientifically known) seem to catch everyone’s attention. They are popular because of their unique appeal. The flower is commonly associated with happiness because of its unusual height and brilliant color.

The tallest growing flower, with potential of reaching between 8 and 13 feet, is a summer favorite in North America and throughout the world.

Cheer Up Your Garden

Has this summer inspired you to add more color to your life? If yes, consider cheering up your garden with sunflowers.

There are many types of sunflowers you can plant. Some grow taller than a person and develop bright yellow blooms the size of dinner plates. Others come in shades of orange and red.

With tall stems and large, colorful blossoms, sunflowers are known to be useful too. They can create a natural fence to block a neighbor’s unsightly yard and distract from the view with pops of color.

Why Plant Sunflowers

Sunflowers are native to North America but can be found all over the world now. They are easy to maintain and can begin growing within six months of planting seeds. In addition, seeds can be planted up to 100 days before freezing temperatures strike. Any seeds that fall on fertile soil (as this is important for sunflowers) may surprise you by shooting up quickly next spring.

When autumn begins to sweep in, you can cut the head of the flower off a few inches down the stem. Hanging it up in an airy place to dry will produce many seeds. You can gather the seeds and use them for cooking or save them to plant the following year.

Interesting Facts about Sunflowers

Sunflowers are not only a beautiful addition to any garden, they are also interesting. There are many surprising facts about sunflowers. Wet your curiosity with these four truths. Then, learn more by reading this blog:

  • A single sunflower is made up of thousands of flowers joined together- each pedal represents one flower.
  • Sunflower heads track the sun, which is correctly known as heliotropism.
  • Sunflowers are the national flower of Russia.
  • The tallest sunflower grew to be over 25 feet tall.

Sunflowers are summer’s glory. There are many ways you can express your creativity this season, and many mediums that allow for artistic expression. Gardening can be a canvas to those who like to be outside in nature.

Yard work does not seem very artistic at times, but think about it this way: no two gardens are the same. By all means, get outside and create your unique art garden this summer.

Read more Segmation blog posts about Gardening:

Garden Art Knows No Limits

Where Urban Life Meets Natural Art

Tulipmania Art

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Fireworks Celebrate Cai Gou – Qiang’s Bold Art

China native Cai Gou-Qiang has exploded the conventional rules of art with his firecracker productions and visual art pieces.

You may recognize the name, Cai Gou- Qiang from the 2008 Olympics. Cai was the mastermind behind all special effects for the opening and closing ceremonies. He is recognized all over the world for his ability to create breathtaking firework displays. While many people can light firecrackers, only few can orchestrate such awe inspiring scenes.

Are you wondering how he acquired such a fascinating and seemingly dangerous talent?

It all began when Cai was young. Fireworks were easily accessible and he played with them often. The fun soon turned into an artistic experiment. However, Cai couldn’t have achieved such heights of success without a few errors.

His first attempt to create art using firecrackers came from his curiosity to see what would happen if he simply fired a rocket into a canvas. As you can imagine, this process only served to burn the canvas to pieces.

On Cai’s second attempt he removed the gunpowder from firecrackers. He then arranged the gunpowder on a blank canvas and lit it. The effect was stunning. It created an art form all its own.

Since then, Cai and his adventurous style of art continue to gain popularity. He has literally exploded conventional rules of art and how it can be created. Cai’s images of space, nature and time are supernatural in their fiery distortion.

For Cai, this artistic journey has been a personal one. His style serves to break conventional rules, and the world recognizes the uniqueness he brings to the art community. For Cai Gou- Qiang, this style of art is suspenseful and rewarding. He enjoys the adrenalin pumping process of working hard and hoping his pieces will turn out. You can bet, his audience agrees. Nothing can diminish the beauty or the sheer emotional thrill of watching Cai’s firework displays. Likewise, his gunpowder designs are just as intriguing and mesmerizing.

The artist, now 54, resides and works in New York.

http://www.latimes.com/entertainment/news/la-et-0404-fireworks-artist-20120404,0,4212742.story

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Blue Trees in Seattle

Which one of these blue trees doesn’t belong? The residents of Seattle have been wondering just that. Those who visit Seattle’s Westlake Park this summer are sure to witness a unique change of scenery.

Australian artist, Konstantin Dimopoulos is responsible for transforming the usually brown bark on these trees bright blue. No, she didn’t climb these trees and paint them blue. The blue coloring comes from biologically safe pigmented water.

As simple as the process may seem, its end result is quite complex. In fact, the park is other worldly. Anyone who witnesses these blue Seattle trees is sure to feel as if they have entered a strange new world. It’s a fairyland where one’s imagination can run free.

Another amazing aspect of this art project is that the blue trees will revert back to their natural color. The pigment will fade over time. The trees were turned blue on April 2, 2012. It is expected that they will remain blue for several months.  Visitors to this Seattle Park can see these blue trees for themselves throughout the entire summer season.

According to Dimopoulos, “Color is a powerful stimulant, and means of altering perception and defining space and time.”  Blue is definitely not the color that we associate with trees.  The striking color contrast forces one to consider what must be out of place and what has changed in the world. 

How does one relate to this type of change?  The phrase; stop and smell the roses comes to mind.  Maybe it is time to stop and experience how we relate to the natural world.  Thanks to Dimopoulos and her creative artistic expression, art has once again encouraged individuals to appreciate the art that nature provides us every day.  She has definitely put a new spin on the natural art we tend to believe will never change.

We all can agree with Dimopoulos that color is a powerful tool of perception.

Do these unordinary blue trees spark any emotions in you?  What do they cause you to consider?  Does the color blue make a different kind of statement than yellow or purple trees would?

Do you want to know more about Dimopoulos and her project?  To read more about the blue trees in Seattle’s Westlake Park visit the website provided below.

Images and story available at: http://weburbanist.com/2012/04/03/blue-trees-surreal-spectacle-coming-to-seattle-parks/

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Where Urban Life Meets Natural Art

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The image above may look like a gardening project gone wrong, or a lot of effort to set up a unique photograph. However, neither of these options can explain the image.

Art can take on many forms and serve many purposes. The photograph above showcases the collaboration of art and nature. It serves as a medium for discussing the importance of growing awareness for both nature and art in urban areas.

This photograph is just a tiny piece of a larger project. The French village of Jaujae celebrated the 10th year of its Arts and Nature Trail program by spreading 1,400 feet of living turf throughout the community.

In this urban city there is little room for art or nature. This extensive stretch of turf weaves its way throughout the city; up stairs, around corners and down streets calling one and all to experience both nature and art.

The 3.5 tons of natural, living turf grass is meant to bring both art and nature into an urban area that would otherwise be overwhelmed by its stone structures. The goal is to provide urban dwellers with a link to all things artistic and shine light on the beauty of the natural world. This winding band of grass serves as a connection for the individuals of Jaujae with the place where art and nature meet.

This endeavor forces individuals to take a moment away from their everyday activities and appreciate that which is creative. It urges the public to support both the arts and projects that bring the natural world into the city. This creative, artistic idea definitely calls for attention and support in a way that a simple garden never could.  It literally attempts to use art to connect man with the environment.

The grass path that runs throughout the city is only a temporary installation. However, it will be interesting to see how this artistic effort works to inspire not only the people of Jaujae, but also others who wish to discover artistic ways of bringing communities together through nature.

Image made available by Web Urbanist – Local Designs to Global Destinations

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Leaf Art in your Backyard

Fallen leafs lay on the green grass, sprinkling it with colorful accents. They add a freshness to the autumn season — and here’s a way they can have the same effect on you. Have you ever thought about ways to use leafs as decorations in your home?

In many parts of the world, fall is in full swing. It’s a good time to bring the festive season inside your home. In addition to scented candles (like pumpkin pie and cranberry spice), you can add accents around your home to fully appreciate the comfort this season offers. The best part is, you can find these creative touches in your own backyard or on a stroll around the neighborhood.

All you need:

          • Walking shoes
          • Newspaper
          • Glue
  1. As you enjoy the crisp weather outside, pick up the beautiful leafs that catch your attention. It’s a good idea to collect a number of them and store them between the pages of a newspaper. Place a number of pages on top of the page that is folded over the leafs. This will gently flatten the leafs and won’t allow them to curl or crack as they dry.
  2. Let the leaves dry between the newspaper pages for a couple of weeks. This presses them into their permanent flat shape and keeps the texture in tact so they have the vein quality leafs have naturally.
  3. When the leafs have been successfully flatten between the pages of the newspaper, brush on a thin layer of glue like Mod Podge. This is an all-in-one glue, sealer, and finish.  Let it dry completely before brushing a thin layer on the other side. Then repeat this step by applying a second layer.

Once your leaf creation if fully dry it will be flexible, durable and colorful. Now you can apply your own creativity. Will you hang your leaf art? Scatter them in visible areas? Create a collage with them? The choice is up to you.

Here’s one suggestion: Scatter them around your computer station. You can string some together and drape them over the monitor if you’d like. This way, on the chilly fall days yet to come, you can cozy up with an online art program, like Segmation – Paint by numbers, and explore the artist inside you while enjoying the artistic and festive surroundings you’ve created.

Don’t forget your hot cocoa or warm tea.

Image made available by OregonDOT on Flickr through Creative Common License.

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Beach Fun

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Enjoy a relaxing day at the beach – being outdoors with the sun, sand, and surf. There are lots of fun activities to keep you busy including volleyball, sailing, windsurfing, swimming, playing with beach balls, fishing, building sand castles, watching the sun set, or doing nothing at all except working on your tan. Our Beach Fun pattern set has a great set of images which capture this experience splendidly… and there’s no suntan oil needed!

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