Flowers were the subject for the art club painting night, so for a couple of days before I had been thinking about what to paint. I would like to share with you a few thoughts. Nothing quite like laying in a field of buttercups on a hot summers day looking up at the sky, however buttercups are past their best, but there are plenty of daisies and Queen Annes lace to conjure up memories of childhood. Some wild flowers are protected so a photograph would be necessary. June sees an abundance of garden flowers, but I didn’t want to raid my garden. Aldi has a good cheap selection and that statement flower from the florist shop would be a bit expensive.Further inspiration? Vincent Van Gogh, Georgia O’ Keeffe, and Claude Monet are all master flower painters worth looking at. Modern, traditional, simple or complex? The Victorians used flowers as symbols. Many flowers were attributed with their own language. May be the gift of a painting could have a coded message? Everyone knows a red rose says ‘I love you,’ a deep pink one is for appreciation and gratitude, whereas a white rose states, ‘I am worthy of you.’ With a pansy and white clover you are asking someone to think about you, but a Hellebore means scandal and false statements. Having received pink carnations as a present I found on the internet they mean gratitude (how appropriate as they were given to me as a thank you). I added the deep pink rose, and Gysophilia (baby’s breath) which is a symbol of everlasting love.
Fat over lean
Unhappy with painting in artificial light I turned my flower painting into ‘A wiper’! The next day I set the flowers up on a windowsill and took a photo of them in sunlight. Sometimes life gets in the way and I have to restart or return to a unfinished painting. July I made a restart, but is now August and I have had to work ‘fat over lean,’ to finish the painting. I much prefer ‘Alla Prima,’ (one shot) painting. Up to press I am never happy with a painting when I use the ‘Fat Over Lean,’ method. I persevered because I was experimenting with the red background. I think I am unhappy with this one because it is overworked, and the brush marks are unexpressive. Was it worth the effort? Well,Yes, one must learn!