Nicholas Baxter

On The Road 5

On a recent adventure in New Zealand I had the good fortune of staying at Solscape Eco Retreat in the hills above Raglan, overlooking the Tasman Sea. This popular backpacker’s destination is an ongoing permaculture experiment offering visitors an inspiring vision of off-the-grid, sustainable living in a totally immersive natural setting. Adjacent to a solar-powered, spring water-fed outdoor kitchen sat an apparently well-loved wood-fired earth oven, constructed by hand from salvaged and recycled materials. This crown jewel of primitive outdoor cooking was a welcome source of heat on the few cool nights spent there–to say nothing of the enticing smells of slow roasted food which kept me hovering curiously nearby during mealtimes.

Solscape oven

Going through studio withdrawals, I decided to commemorate the sacred vessel of sustenance with an impromptu 30-minute life study using whatever materials were on hand: generic white printer paper and a mismatched palette of Copic markers.

Earth Oven (study)

Earth Oven (study), marker on paper, 8.5 x 11in, 2013