Saturday, December 14, 2019

Events with Walter Pall at Nature‘s Way Nursery, Harrisburg in 2020

Woodstock XIII w/ Walter Pall & Jim Doyle

  April 3, 9:30 AM - Sun, April 5, 4:00PM

True bonsai immersion for the beginner to the very experienced. Jump right in...250+ newly arrived 20-500 year old Yamadori, domestic trees and bring your own for continual design. Students come from around the country and Canada. Join us each year for these very different workshops. Lunch & drinks included.

Prices and aplication here:

Winter Study w/Walter Pall & Jim Doyle

two weeks earlier than traditionally!

Fri. Nov. 20, 9:30 AM - Sun, Nov. 22,  4:00 PM

Never a dull moment... Walter and Jim have been working collectively since 1995. They continue because it is both fun and informative process for them. We offer the opportunity to work on killer material and advanced techniques with a pair of premier teachers. You may bring your own trees for continued study and season-appropriate development. Lunch & drinks included

prices and application here:

Location: Nature's Way Nursery, 1451 Pleasant Hill Rd., Harrisburg PA 17112
Friday 9:30 – 5:00 pm

Saturday 9:30 -5:00 pm

Sunday 10:00 – 4:00 pm

Application: Call Nature's Way (Jim Doyle) for more information and signing up
(717) 545-4555

Participants: This is for all levels– from outright newbie to master. Yes, all in one seminar and all get something out of it and all have fun. Even accompanying mates who never thought of attending a seminar could have fun. The number can be 20 to 30 or even more folks. One can be fully active participant or observer or passive viewing participant for one, two or three days. This is recommended for undecided newbies and travel company. The status can be changed to active any time- we warn you, most do change the status quickly. If you are not sure whether you want to really do this you are invited to come as 'lurker' for 20 minutes for free and then you decide.

General philosophy: Everyone does what they want to do and how much they want to do. While Jim Doyle and Walter Pall will make it clear what they think should be done it is the participant who decides. The aim is to learn how to approach styling, and learn to see new ways and actually trying them out. New techniques will be taught like e.g. work on deadwood.
But the emphasis is on making design decisions. So many workshops teach wiring and basic techniques. This is taken for granted in this seminar. The emphasis is on what often is not taught: bonsai as art form. It is important to know your place in bonsai which offers many different ways. Learning by doing, learning by case studies is how we reach the aims. On many different trees we discuss and practice art, craft and speak about philosophy. Basic craft like wiring is often avoided to not waste time for things which really make a big difference (while they are important, but there are many workshops to practice these).

In many traditional workshop the teacher makes the decisions for the students who do exactly what he tells them and often the teacher actually does the critical work for the student. So the students never learn how to make decisions. To practice art is to make decisions all the time. The aim of the seminar it to teach how to make the right decisions. Your trees will most of the time not be touched by the teacher in this seminar.

What's going to happen: In the morning the first participants arrive. The nursery crew and Jim and Walter can help to choose trees for the workshop. All trees that the participants brought and the chosen ones from the nurser are carried to the greenhouse.
Usually a session of general interest follows speaking about many different subjects related to bonsai. This will most of the time take place in the yurt.

Then we go to the greenhouse. Walter or Jim start to speak about a tree to the whole class, explain choices and then may actually do a couple of things to the tree to give an example. Then the participants form groups which choose a tree and discuss it for 15 minutes or so. Usually every group has one old timer who knows where to go. Then the speakers of the groups present the trees to the whole class. After some discussions one or more feasible options are decided.

And then this will be actually done. Those who brought a tree can now decide whether they what to do the work immediately or can choose to do nothing with their tree at the moment. Whenever someone is finished the next tree is chosen to study, discuss and work on. The aim is to have many valuable case studies for leaning what usually is not taught at workshops. By presenting each tree to the whole class one learns about a couple dozen trees over the weekend compared with one normal workshops. Much more new experience and knowledge comes from that.

Generally we avoid doing craft work that is time consuming. Not that this work is not important. But we want to spend the time on things which are even more important and not taught usually. If some really want to fully do their tree in the workshop they may – no problem.

Nobody is forced to work in a certain style. While it is well known that Jim and Walter work a lot in the Naturalistic Bonsai Style the actual style is decided by the participant – and often enough by the tree.

Once in a while Jim or Walter will speak about subjects of interest for a while.

An important part of the seminar are the social interconnections during the day and gatherings after work. Many long time friendships were built on these occasions.