Will Heath

“The Bonsaist”

2008 Michigan All State Show

Filed under: Workshops and Demonstrations — May 7, 2008 @ 10:26 am

Another great weekend at the Michigan All State Show. This year I had the pleasure of instructing a Working With Conifers Workshop, a Wiring Demonstration, and participated in another Three-of-a-Kind demo. Vance Wood and myself also were vendors again at this years show.

This great show was held at the Fredrick Meijer Gardens and Sculpture Park in Grand Rapids Michigan. Vance Wood and Eric Newton, two bonsaists from Michigan, also were invited to participate in the Three-of-a-Kind demo. I enjoyed the experience very much and had the opportunity to meet with many of the friends I have made in bonsai over the years. Julian Adams was present as a vendor and instructor and I was pleased to be able to share some thoughts with him.

Being a member of the advisory committee for the All State Show, I was very impressed with the changes made this year. Some of the ideas came directly from the Four Seasons Show I chaired last year and I considered that to be the highest compliment I could receive. The team did a great job this year and I am certain that next years show will be even better.

Below are some pictures from the Three-of-a-Kind demo. For those of you not familiar with this type of demo, all three participants start with the same stock, well as near to the same as can be, and then they all style it according to what they personally see in the tree.


The Shimpaku Juniper I had to work with for the Three-of-a-Kind Demo, shown before styling


Vance Wood’s Stock before styling


Eric Newton’s Stock before styling


I examine the progress during styling


Studying the possiblities presented by the raw stock


Eric Newton digs in with a design already in mind


Eric Newton continues styling while Vance Wood stands behind him


Vance Wood adds jin to his creation


Eric Newton removing some unwanted branches


Vance Wood continues styling


Having the microphone, I pause often to explain concepts of styling to the audience


Eric Newton continues styling


The results of my first styling on the raw stock


The results of Vance Wood’s first styling on the raw stock


The results of Eric Newton’s first styling on the raw stock

Below are some other random pictures from the show.


Vance Wood and myself were vendors once again this year and these are a just a couple happy customers. They are holding a couple mame jades they purchased.


Julian Adams was present and was also a vendor as well as an instructor for workshops at the show


Julian Adams and Vance Wood


Julian Adams and myself


Mollie Hollar and myself

2007 Michigan All State Show

Filed under: Workshops and Demonstrations — February 28, 2008 @ 10:05 am

I had the honor of being invited back to the Michigan All State Show in 2007. This time I had the pleasure of instructing a Literati Workshop, a Mame workshop, and participating in another Three-of-a-Kind demo. I also gave a demostration on applying moss to a bonsai in order to improve the overall visual effect of the presentation.

This great show was held at the Fredrick Meijer Gardens and Sculpture Park in Grand Rapids Michigan. Vance Wood and John Stevens, two other Four Seasons Bonsai Club members, also were invited to participate in the Three-of-a-Kind demo. I enjoyed the experience very much and had the opportunity to meet with many of the friends I have made in bonsai.

Below are some pictures from the Three-of-a-Kind demo. For those of you not familiar with this type of demo, all three participants start with the same stock, well as near to the same as can be, and then they all style it according to what they personally see in the tree.


The stock I was given to work with, shown before styling began.


The stock Vance Wood was given to work with, shown before styling began.


The stock John Stevens was given to work with, shown before styling began.


During the Three-of-a-Kind demostration I search for the tree within.


During the Three-of-a-Kind demostration a few pictures were snapped from behind us.


The area we gave the demostration in was very large and was lit by the skylights 30 feet above.


During the Three-of-a-Kind demostration.


The result of my efforts, a semi-cascade style.


Vance Wood’s finished bonsai.


John Steven’s finished bonsai.


My finished bonsai again, that’s Vance Wood in the background looking like he is wondering what the hell I did.

Below are some pictures from the Literati Workshop. This workshop was aimed toward the beginner and was meant to impart an understanding of the style and the history behind it. The participants all received copies of my article A Brief Exploration of the Literati style ( http://www.artofbonsai.org/feature_articles/literati.php ) and other handouts to take home with them. Using young Scots Pine trees, we then explored the many possibilities of Literati design, in which the participants were allowed to form the trees using only their own personal imagination.


Some of the participants.

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