I have been rather quiet on here these last few months, and the best laid plans had to be set aside to make way for an exciting new venture, an exhibition of my work to be held from tomorrow at Penny Morrison Interiors, London, SW10.
I have been quietly beavering away at a collection of botanically – inspired paintings that chart the flowers of Spring.
I began with the first crocus, at what was an absurdly warm February and the queen Bumble bees awoke, seeking nectar where they could. I chose the little lambs tails of catkins, that attracted the first honey bees and celebrated heavenly hellebores with their plummy, speckled bowls of petals and their smoky foliage.
I watched the buds of magnolia unfurl , painted the bold faces of the auricula, poured over the chequered marvel of fritillaries and then revelled in the glories of the flamboyant tulip. I ended with a celebration of my favourite month of May, where my garden is swathed in cow parsley and bluebells, when everything is fresh and so full of promise.
Each painting includes the bugs and butterflies that depend upon their existence. Some of
which are vital for pollination, others are less welcome, like the fiendish lily beetle that devours fritillaries and the garden snail, who I am learning to love.
Each painting is in oils. I work in thin glazes of colour upon a traditional gesso ground. Each takes several days to complete and this proved a challenge as each plant portrait was painted from life . The tulips were especially challenging, as they can change rapidly in warmth. My studio was filled with jars of twigs, with buds at various stages of opening, and pots and pots of flowers.
It has been an intense, but wonderful few months, and a Spring I shall never forget.
You can see the paintings that will be on display on my Paintings page of my Artworks section website.