McHenry County Conservation District invites you to view “Exploring the Midwest through Woodblock Printmaking” an art exhibit on display March 4–May 23 at Lost Valley Visitor Center in Glacial Park, Rt. 31 and Harts Rd., Ringwood; with an Artist Reception—April 2 from 1–3 p.m. This exhibit is free and open to the public Daily in March, 9 a.m.–4 p.m., in April–May, 9 a.m.–5:30 p.m. Growing up near a state park in northern Illinois fed Alfred Stark’s love of nature from a very early age. Then and now, his favorite way to spend the day is hiking in the woods, exploring the prairie, or paddling one of our many small lakes and rivers—these are places where he finds inspiration. About twelve years ago, Alfred discovered Japanese Woodblock Printmaking, also known as Moku Hanga (wood print). What visitors will see in the exhibit is a mix of Moku Hanga and Western printmaking techniques. All pieces are hand carved with traditional Japanese and German carving tools. Through woodblock printmaking, Stark is able to document his love of nature and share it with anyone who might be interested, hoping that they, too, will want to spend more time outdoors. Woodblock printing allows this artist to pare down the natural world to what he finds essentially beautiful about it. Stark holds a Bachelor’s degree in Fine Art from Northern Illinois University and his work has been featured in regional, national and international shows. His prints can be seen year round at the Longbranch Gallery in Mineral Point, Wisconsin and the Woodwalk Gallery in Egg Harbor, Wisconsin. View more of his work at alfredstark.etsy.com.