Aug 4, 2010

Lace and Clover painting

One of my reference photos
I've been taking pictures of wildflowers wherever I go lately. One I see everywhere is Queen Anne's Lace, which is just a lovely lacey flower that grows in groupings, about 2-3 feet tall. I've done a few pastels of this flower with other grasses and wildflowers. I really enjoy drawing them out on black charcoal paper - the texture of the paper is great to work with and the contrast of the bright flowers has a nice look.

The flowers that will be the focal point are roughed out
So I was asked to create another painting of these flowers in a larger size. The reference photos I used actually have a lot more green to them. Also a lot more vegetation - I usually make a series of thumbnails to settle on a composition that's simpler and more focused on the flowers.

Grasses, background plants and wildflowers are added
After the thumbnails I sketched out the flowers on black paper, cut to 11" x 14" with a little extra wiggle room. The flowers have pattern with clusters that spiral around, so I usually work them from the outside in, alternating the clusters. After the basic flowers are drawn, I add in some grasses and background plants to introduce some texture. As the painting gets filled in all over, I go back and add more bright whites to the Queen Anne's Lace and clover or other wildflowers for some color. I also go back with more darks to define edges of stems or leaves and add depth. I might let this painting sit on the artboard and take another look at it, but I think it's about at the point where there is enough movement and detail with some negative space to balance it out.

So that's it! I'll be painting more wildflowers this summer and posting the results. Enjoy!


  1. wow!! Is that... you know?!

  2. LOL - sorry I am not sure if I can decipher that. It's a painting for my friend Brian B (commissioned piece), pastel 11 x 14". Does that answer your question?

  3. Yay! Looks great ;-)