"The Middleton Oak" and "Angel Oak" - Live Oak Trees in Art and Science

"Angel Oak"
Charcoal on craft paper
Dimensions: 36"x 48"

This charcoal drawing is a study for an oil painting I was inspired to do awhile back of the "Angel Oak" after spending a night in a tent under it's ancient spreading canopy.

The experience left me with lasting impressions:
The beauty of stars seen through massive limbs and a leafy canopy swaying with Spanish moss.
The ethereal effect of shafts of early morning light piercing through branches like light streaming into a cathedral. The cool freshness of the air under the tree. This massive live oak tree has inspired all who have seen it through it's long life. Click here to see plein air painters painting at Angel Oak.

To see my painting of rural farmland near Angel Oak and recent (6/25/09) information about the ongoing development of the land around the Angel Oak, click this link.

For a charcoal/conte drawing of Angel Oak from a different viewpoint, Click here or in the "Live Oak " Art Category with a link here.

Live Oak trees are in the news here due to the recent breaking of massive limbs off the Middleton Oak at Middleton Place. Efforts to stabilize the Middleton Oak are providing scientists a unique opportunity to study the tree's age and climatic history. Artists and craftsmen have been asked to submit creative uses for the wood from the broken limbs to Pat Kennedy at pkennedy@middletonplace.org or to the Middleton Oak Project, 4300 Ashley River Road, Charleston SC 29414.


dpaul said...

I saw the local news article on the limbs breaking. I worry every time one of our beautiful old oaks is threatened. I hope the preservation work is successful. In colonial times these trees were prized for ship building and furniture making among many other uses. I think using some sections of the limbs in colonial craft would be an excellent use of the wood.

Anonymous said...

Colonial crafts. That's a good idea. Another suggestion has been to turn the wood into hand crafted writing pens.

I think the many couples who marry under the tree each year would value a keepsake made from the tree's wood. A wooden heart shaped pendant or a small cross maybe?

Anyone else have suggestions?

Anonymous said...

I, too, went to see The Middleton Oak after the limb fell. Tragic. I am currently working to save The Angel Oak from being developed around. The City of Charleston and Mayor Riley have approved development on 3 sides of her to include "low end" housing and commercial/retail space. The construction, destruction of surrounding forest and hight density population will be devistating for her. Can she survive it? Please sign our petition at:
Thank you everyone!

Katherine Muschick Schneider said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Save the Angel Oak said...

Posted 8-5-08 by "Save The Angel Oak"


Congratulations!! Thanks to your support, our campaign to protect the Angel Oak and its surrounding forest has achieved its first small victory!

The variance hearing to determine the fate of 55 grand oaks has been deferred due to the voice of over 1,000 petitioners!

REMEMBER: It’s not over yet! We still have a long road ahead toward preserving the legacy and timeless beauty of our Angel Oak!

J O i N * T H E * M O V E M E N T
Follow the link to the SAVE THE ANGEL OAK PETITION!
homepage: http://www.isrex.org

Katherine Muschick Schneider said...

I accidentally deleted my reply to the comment on a petition to reduce the number of large trees that will be destroyed in the development project for the land around Angel Oak.
My comment was:

I'll be happy to sign the petition to save a few more beautiful trees from the bulldozer during the development of the land around the Angel Oak on Johns Island, SC.

These remaining trees and the 44 acres now being developed around the Angel Oak should have (and could have) been saved to add to Angel Oak Park by the City of Charleston.

Katherine Schneider said...

For more information about Angel Oak and other significant Live Oaks around Chas. click the "Live Oak" category in the Art Category list on the right of this page.


Emily said...


A meeting of the Board of Zoning Appeals - Site Design will be held Wednesday, October 1, 2008 at 5 p.m. in the Main Conference Room, Third Floor, Charleston County School District Building, 75 Calhoun Street. The following applications will be considered:

A. Application advertised for previous Board of Zoning Appeals - Site Design agendas but not heard due to meeting cancellation or deferral. For information on this application, call 724-3790.

1. Maybank Highway and Bohicket Road (Johns Island) (TMS # 279-00-00-142,248 and 309)
Request a variance from Section 54-327 to allow the removal of 11 grand trees (Ordinance prohibits the removal of trees having a 24-inch or greater D.B.H. [Diameter Breast Height]).
Request a special exception from Section 54-327 to allow the removal of 14 grand trees.
Request a variance from Section 54-330 to allow a reduced impervious construction setback near the bases of five (5) grand trees.
Zoned PUD.
Owner: AOV-AOD, LLC and AOD Development, LLC
Applicant: HLA, Inc

Plan on being at this meeting Wednesday October 1 at 5:00PM at 75 Calhoun Street 3rd floor, Main Conference Room

We have got to show up at this meeting and tell the BZA we say NO to the destruction of these trees.

Katherine Muschick Schneider said...

Over 100 people attended the Charleston Zoning Board meeting Oct 1 2008, to consider requests to remove 25 more "Grand Trees" and to allow construction encroachments around 5 other "Grand Trees" within Phase One of the Angel Oak Village development.

After hearing comments from 2 arborists, a hydrologist (all employed by the developer of Angel Oak Village) and concerned citizens against the variance requests, the Zoning Board voted 4 to 2 in favor of the developer on all variance requests.

Charleston City Councilwomen Kathleen Wilson requested that the board seek additional information on "critical root zone issues" for Angel Oak before additional concessions are allowed.

Hopefully, this wise request for additional advice from impartial professionals based on data more relevant to the unique concerns of the Angel Oak will be considered by the Zoning Board and Charleston City Council in the future.

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