Poppies may be ‘done & dusted’

Over the last week or so I have been working on six paintings for the Reflections of Italy exhibition in Wellington next month. My initial trial piece wasn’t right, and it took a good friend to point out that it didn’t reflect me as an artist. I was trying to hard to make something that would sell. Onto a new trial piece, which sold overnight – just to reinforce the message (thanks to the Universe for the lesson). So I grabbed a couple of buckets of water, my six full size sheets of watercolour paper and got messy. Green paint everywhere! I splashed and washed and dripped my way to six backgrounds then left them to thoroughly dry. Not easy in this damp weather. Once they’d sat for a couple of days I stencilled on my poppy outlines and sat quietly filling them in. I love the feel of stenciled flowers; there’s a crispness and uniformity to them that pleases me.

Once the main flower colour — red, red, and red — was dry it was time for some details, like the wee black dots that say “poppy”, and checking that I had enough splashes of dark in the background. I have two of the pieces on my study wall at the moment so I see them all the time. If nothing strikes me in the next day or two I’ll declare them done. The other four can stay out in my art room for now. Next on my agenda is booking the accommodation so Mum and I can spend a couple of days in Wellington and go to the opening. Hopefully, I’ll also be able to help hang the works. Still not entirely sure how to hang mine, mind you…I think the answer might be tiny stainless steel dressmaking pins. It will depend, in part anyway, on what the walls in the exhibition are made of.

Poppies #1

Poppies #2

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