I was given this orchid plant as a gift last week:
I love orchids but am not the best plant carer so looking after it is likely to be a challenge. I really like the unusual structure of the these flowers, and the fact that there are fairly robust and yet also very fragile.
Whilst the plant is in good health I am planning to try and do some sketches, and possibly some small paintings, of the flowers. The current plan is to concentrate on close-up studies of the centre of the flowers as I really like the flash of red and yellow against the crisp white petals. The main challenge of these studies will be ensuring that I do not overwork the images. I need to try and concentrate on the fresh intensity of the colours, and the fragility of the lines created by the form. The aim will be to convey the simplicity and quality of the form within my mark-making.
Receiving the plant reminded me of recent charity shop finds that I stashed away last month:
The compositional structure of my paintings is often inspired by floral patterned fabrics and lace - parts of which I appropriate and layer within images as part of my painting process. I only ever try to use fabrics that have been passed to me or found in charity shops. I like the concept of using something that somebody else no longer has a use for, and spending time studying it and (hopefully) giving the item a new sense of purpose.
As I build up a body of sketches of the plant from life, I would like to eventually develop these studies into more resolved paintings. I like the idea of possibly juxtaposing stylised floral patterns with more realistic studies of plants and flowers from life. This is the type of ongoing project that I hope to use to help me work through periods of creative block, and also to continue to hone my observational and mark-making skills.