David Austin Roses & Hydrangeas
14.5″ x 18” pastel
My Blossom II entry “David Austin Roses & Hydrangeas” is a pastel painting on paper. I decided to paint the same vase that I used in my first Blossom painting. My inspiration this time was to combine the old with the new. The two species of David Austin Roses I painted were purchased this summer and were new to my garden. The hydrangeas had been in my yard for many years. I had my old blue and white china vase, a recently purchased tablecloth, a teacup with saucer from the local consignment store, an old piece of silk embroidery, and a silver spoon from my Aunt’s silver service. I brought together the old and the new, combining beautiful flowers, new treasures, and pieces that hold dear memories to create my painting.
Dahlia and Waterford
30” x 22” watercolor
For the first time, beating the odds of short cool spring and hot summer in Texas, I was able to grow a bigger-than-bowl sized dahlia; it blossomed in my garden early in May. Every morning, I greeted four buds, which blossomed and withered. I was amazed and proud of this magnificent beauty and sheer size of it. Of course, I wanted to paint it. I cut one flower and set up with my crystal bowl. I wanted to adorn the flower with a sheer background to continue the rhythm of the petal pattern.
15” x 20” oil
One of the most magnificent and yet fragile flowers that I have seen is the tree peony in my front yard. Even a minor rain shower can destroy the tissue-paper thin petals. I wait patiently every spring for the buds to burst into flower and then pray that the rain will let me enjoy them for a while. I wanted to capture the fragile beauty of this peony in a piece of art. Through the use of dramatic back lighting I was able to highlight the peony’s delicate petals. The painting lets the viewer see the inherent qualities that make this flower so special.
Autumn in Ochre
24” x 24” acrylic on canvas
The moment I saw the coral blossoms in the ochre pot, I knew that I had to paint them. Inspired by the autumnal foliage and blossoms, they seemed a perfect accompaniment to the crudely formed nature of the pot. The silhouette added drama and further accentuated the light reflected on the pot.
9” x 12” acrylic on board
As a nature artist with a background in science, biology, zoology, and botany, I have devoted much of my artwork toward promoting and funding conservation. I build butterfly gardens and teach others to build them. The Dutchman’s Pipe Vine is a favorite of mine, host to the threatened Black Swallowtail Polydamus butterfly. From one small plant, which I planted at the base of a dead tree, it became a 25’ canopy covered in blooms. In season as many as 50 or more butterflies can be seen on it all day. I simply had to paint it!