A calling for me is to continue as my mother did before me to paint the perfume into these ancient yet ephemeral “white” blooms.
To move away from the approach of many a botanical artist through the ages that see white flowers in varying values of one pale
hue or a plain neutral gray is invigorating as in doing so I feel I have captured the essence of this beautiful bloom. Here I have
reveled in the subtleties in this white bloom, its shadows and color and overcome the challenges in applying free flowing watercolor
wash while maintaining the detail I feel compelled to illustrate in a botanical portrait. Elements that further excited and motivated
the artist in me – the juxtaposition of contrasting textures and values; the shiny leathery leaves against the delicate, subtle colors of
the bloom; the golden hairs enveloping the newly formed bud; russet under-leaf and bright yellow leaf margins; the heady perfume
in my studio – all a beguiling mix of elements that drew me in to the challenge. I cannot leave out the memories I have of my
mother before me delighting in painting these same flowers and creating her own beautiful watercolors of these gorgeous
blooms collected from a tree in our Brisbane garden.
The original was a wedding gift for my son, Ian and his bride, Elizabeth, December 2003.
Limited watercolor palette used: 1. Indanthrene blue 2. Winsor Lemon & 3. Permanent Rose.
F-C Polychromos pencil underlay of form shadows before the application of wet-on-wet leaf washes.