EcoArt Expeditions


Engage your creativity - Draw, Paint, Write, and Walk the River -

                                                       Engage your senses - Breathe, Listen, Touch, Observe, Taste -

If you love being in nature and exploring the SE Arizona landscape, join us for this novel 1-day art-based field expedition at the Santa Cruz River in Tubac, AZ.  Learn Art-Based Perceptual Ecology (ABPE) methods as taught by ABPE pioneer, Dr. Lee Ann Woolery, ecologist and artist. No prior art experience is necessary.

Participants will walk sections of the Santa Cruz River along the Anza Trail where the river flows year-round and engage in a sensory exploration of place-based stories that may include stories of the Fremont Cottonwood, Velvet Mesquite, Water Boatman, Bobcat, Gray Hawk, or Vermilion Flycatcher. Participants will gain skills in translating these stories to a visual language using various media. The results will lead you toward a deeper knowing and understanding of the Santa Cruz River and all animate beings that call it home.

This workshop is open to all who are interested in connecting with the natural world; for those who would like to engage sensory capabilities beyond sight; and for those who would like to open to detail in the landscape at scales previously unnoticed.

This workshop involves some drawing, however, there are no requirements for art skills or art experience to participate. There is moderate walking and some bending and sitting involved.

Pre-registration is required for either of the  1-day Workshops.  New material is introduced at each workshop.  Each workshop is only open to 12 participants, so space is limited. Register NOW to assure your place! A materials list will be forwarded once you have registered.

Friday, March 22 - 1-day Workshop

Registration fee:  $102  (includes lunch)

To Register using a credit card, click here:  Eventbrite.  To Register with a check, contact Dr. Woolery for mailing instructions at

Friday, April 12 - 1-day Workshop
Registration fee:  $102  (includes lunch)
To Register using a credit card, click here:  Eventbrite.   To Register with a check, contact Dr. Woolery for mailing instructions at

For more information on the workshops or the methods taught, visit EcoArt Expeditions or contact

Located in the heart of the Sonoran Desert, Tubac has long been known as a famous artist colony.  As  stewards of a long and rich heritage, The Lowe House Project exist to benefit artists from a wide variety of disciplines who desire to expand their creativity and in turn, benefit the community. Tubac is also known for its many shops, galleries, and restaurants. It is minutes away from Tumacacori Mission, one of the oldest Spanish missions in the US; and a short drive to recreation and birding at Pena Blanca Lake, Patagonia Lake and Audubon’s Paton Center for Hummingbirds. Come for the workshop and stay for the weekend at the Lowe House. Contact Nancy at for lodging information at the Lowe House or learn more about Lowe House Project here.


Lee Ann Woolery, Expedition Leader With a focus on divergent ways of knowing, Dr. Woolery pioneered Art-Based Perceptual Ecology, a unique research methodology used in collaboration with Western science methods to study the environment. Woolery is an interdisciplinary scholar, researcher, a practicing artist, and educator of over 30 years. She has taught environmentally focused workshops at Saguaro National Park, AZ; Red Butte Gardens, UT; and IslandWood, Bainbridge Island, WA in addition to other locations. Woolery holds a doctorate in Environmental Studies from Antioch University New England and a graduate degree from The School of the Art Institute of Chicago. Her doctoral field study in Desert Ecology was conducted in the Sonoran Desert in Arizona and Mexico. Dr. Woolery’s dissertation: Art-Based Perceptual Ecology as a way of knowing the language of place, and additional information on her research, workshops and field expeditions can be found here, EcoArt Expeditions.

From across the globe or in your own backyard. 

The Fremont Cottonwood is one of the keystone species found along the Santa Cruz River.  Studies of the riparian system  reveal stories of the animate beings that call this place home, such as the bright green watercress growing alongside the flowing water of the Santa Cruz River.

All artwork and photos on this page copyright L.A. Woolery.

Participants in the first Art As a Way of Knowing the Santa Cruz River  workshop practicing ABPE methods sitting in the flood plain among the detritus of the Fremont Cottonwood .

These workshop dates available:

Friday, March 22, 2019  |  9 am to 4 pm

Friday, April 12, 2019  |  9 am to 4 pm

The Lowe House, 14 Calle Iglesia, Tubac, AZ 85646
Expedition Leader: Ecologist/Artist, Dr. Lee Ann Woolery 

Registration fee-  $102  (includes instruction for the 1-day workshop and lunch)

                                                                Pre-registration is required.

Art as a Way of Knowing the Santa Cruz River