My latest work ‘In Season’ started with a trip to my local florists and flower market.
This is where my vision starts to become real and evolves as I discover that the peonies I initially imagined myself painting were not in season. Only imported peonies were available, so I chose to purchase local flowers that were in abundant supply. I purchased just one peony to satisfy my original vision. I was drawn to orchids for their vast array of varieties and colours which are both natural and new colours are created using artificial colour – much like a painting is constructed. I bring the flowers back to my studio to capture a moment in their short life with a camera so I can replicate and recreate their beauty when I paint. While the flowers are living (and sometimes when they are withered and in varying stages of their lifecycle,) I create studies of every twist and turn of the stems, and the delicate and fragile yet strong petals which are individual but create a whole flower. This gives me familiarity and a deeper understanding of the flowers. Then I sketch my linen canvas using pencil and start creating an under painting using transparent layers of raw umber, focusing on tonality. Then I use transparent and opaque colour until I reach a likeness with my subject. I paint petal by petal which makes my process slow and considered and brings me into a meditative flow state.
Materials: Oil paint on Italian linen
Size: 112 x 168cm