Archives for posts with tag: stonington connecticut

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This week I’m feeling confident in my resining techniques and comfortable with my full-sized propane torch, so I’m trying my hand at some larger pieces. This one measures 6″ x 12″. If that doesn’t sound large, try a few steps of the resin dance yourself and you’ll see it my way. The working window is only about 20 minutes from the first pour to removal of the last bubble and I work with up to six pieces at a time. Still, I’m on the march and have larger panels waiting in the wings.

For the real plants in the foreground, I chose a mix of weeds and garden plants — wild grass seed heads, a piece of Japanese maple, and a little leaf of curly coleus.

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It occurs to me that while I often make mention of projects in the works and talk about process, I have never posted a photo of an unfinished piece until now

Today I am working on a companion piece to the scented geranium and fig leaf pairing I posted earlier in the week.

I prefer to begin these paintings by blocking in the negative spaces. Although I did so in this case as well, my plan was to show the geranium, this time, in summer colors rather than in the soft tans it turns to in the pressing process. The variety in my garden is variegated with light yellow to white ruffled edges and I needed to see it on canvas before settling on a final background color. The dark raw umber that I chose after blocking in the leaf will serve well to bring out its contrasting colors.

As the work goes along, I will add layers of pigment gradually reducing the degree of transparency you see both in the background and foreground at this early stage. It seems fitting that the background be the color of the rich soil this plant grows in. When I turn my attention to the space left for the ginko leaf, the background color will now dictate the shades of chartreuse that I choose to represent the spring colors of that lovely tree.

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Two young and still tightly formed stalks of Mexican feather grass appear to tower over a little forest of fern ‘trees’ and the whole scene might be glimpsed through a window bordered by stained glass.

Back to the drawing board for my next piece. No harvesting today — rain in Stonington.

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My friends in and around Stonington can see some of my pieces at Frills Gallery in Watch Hill. (It’s the white building with a front porch as you first enter town) This is a companion piece to one I made recently. The colors have changed and I’ve used different plants — fringed Bleeding Heart for the ‘tall trees’ and ferns and a Foam Flower leaf for the underbrush. A crazy little Bellflower hugs the beach.

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For my pressed botanical art, I usually disassemble sprigs of Sweet Woodruff so I can make perfect little wagon-wheel whorls and folded leaves that work well as sepals for my fantasy flowers or shrubbery in my stylized landscapes. This time, I went the traditional route for pressing botanicals, and kept the whole sprigs intact. The central sprig — largest of the three — had a small white flower at the tip which I replaced with a folded rose petal.

Waiting eagerly for more roses to bloom. Meanwhile this little piece is the latest addition to my Etsy inventory. Hoping for drier weather than is now predicted so I can set up shop in Lippett Park in Providence on Saturday as part of the Providence Artisan’s Market.

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Even though it is outside of the oval that forms the focal point of this composition, I think the Foam Flower leaf steals the show. It is placed against text which reads ” Everything has beauty, but not everyone sees it – Confucius”

See it in my Etsy shop or visit me at the Providence Artisan’s Market at Lippett Park on Saturday.
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The background graphic above which these three bubbles of maple leaves float is a quote by Albert Schweitzer: “Never say there is nothing beautiful in the world anymore. There is always something to make you wonder in the shape of a tree, the trembling of a leaf.”

See my other botanicals in my Etsy shop.

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I have an unlimited supply of these perfect little whorls of Sweet Woodruff, but perfection can be boring. Everyone sees something else in abstract art and probably in plants as well. In this case, I see Laugh-In and Volkswagon Busses. I love the rich color of the Sweet Potato Vine. Since my garden is shady, I usually choose the vivid green variety better to emerge from the shadows, but now that I know how nicely the deep purple dries, I’ll have to bend the rules a bit more this season.

I finally got a chance to create a graphic for the vibrant fern I found still growing in my Stonington Garden. I’ve lost count of the number of snowstorms we’ve had this year, but the fact that this was still plump and green in March — and with a double tip to boot — was quite a happy surprise. I kept it simple with a little miniature ivy ‘bow’ at the base and a faux mat fashioned with graphics alone. (The outer mat is real of course)

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Just when I thought my supply of pressed ferns from last year’s garden was finally depleted, I was walking the perimeter of my little property and found these brave winter survivors hiding under a hydragea. They were thriving there and none the worse for wear despite all the snow that fell in Stonington this winter. I could hardly wait the two weeks it took to get them prepared for a botanical collage. I have more waiting in the wings so watch for more in the coming days. In order to enhance their visibility against the ‘night’ sky, I mounted three of them with the lighter back of the frond showing. To see more of this growing body of pressed botanical work, click here.