"I like good strong words that mean something."- Louisa May Alcott
On Painting Tulips
Posted on February 9, 2016 @ 2:35 pm by

Bouquet BethThis month I participated in my second art show, which means not only do I submit a new piece of art but also a new “artist statement.” I’m posting my statement this month. It pretty much sums up my current mindset on how to enjoy life as we go along instead of trying to control the pieces that never come out as we expect. Life isn’t simple. But if you pay attention to the individual shapes, colours and patterns, the bigger picture continues to be highlighted with many spots of bright light.

So now, about “Bouquet”….

I had a neighbour once who complained that the red tulips planted by her gardener mistakenly became mixed up with the yellow ones. I tried to explain that tulips were not a flower could always control. If they didn’t mx themselves up, the squirrels did it for you,

That’s why I love painting them. On one hand, they have very well defined geometric shapes—compared to a rose, they appear so simple to paint. But like the watercolour medium itself, tulips are curiously unpredictable. They stretch to the sun, they curve, they droop, they fall; some stay closed tightly and others open up so much that their petals fall to the ground.

I choose to paint impressions of tulip: colours, shapes, spots of light and dark and movement. My challenge is to make it look simple when it’s actually quite complicated—3 colours mixed on the paper like the flowers mix in the garden, with the white of the paper highlighting where the sun catches the petals and leaves.

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