I don't think that wherever you live in the world you can fail to have heard that Queen Elizabeth has died. Here in the UK it is dominating news programmes, and much of the media. Most of us have been watching , almost mesmerised by the solemnity of the processions , the quiet dignity of the crowds, and small coffin at the centre of it all. It feels, like many of these huge world events do, that everything has suddenly changed slightly and we are looking around for what we should do.
In favour of, or against the monarchy, the Queen has been a constant presence in the background of all our lives , and this gives us a quiet moment to pause and reflect , on not just Her life , but ours too.
There was a proclamation in our small village on Monday evening, it had filtered down to our little village , it made me realise that many moons ago , this is how and when we would have heard important news...days after the event.
What a different world we live in now, but somehow important traditions anchor us and keep us going.
So in that most British way possible and I think the Queen would approve, it is a time to Keep Calm and Carry On.
On Tuesday my son came home from his summer job with a beautiful posy of Dahlias , grown in Devon by Milla at the lovely events venue Hayne. I thought I would have a go at painting them. Not their every petal or detail but the essence of them , popped in a tomato can, looking every bit as lovely as any bouquet.
So first I took a few snaps of them on my phone.
To choose the best angle, I chose this one.
Then I sketched the general shape, a sort of hook to hang the painting on.
Then I sprayed the paper.
All around the flowers with my trusty spray bottle.
I sprayed all around the posy, Now I am afraid you'll have to do , what scares people the most....go for it. Look at the colours in the flowers, load up your brush and tap paint into the areas you have sprayed.
I have used, pinks and yellows.
Then let that dry mopping up any bits that are too wet or dark for your liking. But please try not to fuss to much, this is the background.
Then while it was drying but perhaps a bit damp I began adding the background flowers, defining a few petals, but letting some of the paint merge too.
You can see as the paint dries, that the edges are crisper ( on the right) as the paper underneath isn't as wet.
Now to go in with more distinct flowers, but I am still trying to be loose and gestural.
Working my way wet in wet, adding and sometimes taking away.
Moving to each flower, but also letting the colours move into one another.
Now you see the whitish flower at the top, I painted that negatively, painting the area around the flower to define it's shape. You can't paint light on dark, in watercolour.
I found the next bit tricky , I sort of lost myself and couldn't work out what I was seeing. I dropped colour onto the paper, but it didn't look 'right'
So I added some clingfilm for texture and walked away
Sometimes space gives you a better perspective.
Once back to the painting I carried on adding darks where I thought they should go
Then the tomato can they are sitting in, it's just a rough, waterery, loose painting of a very lovely posy, brought home by my son, and created in Devon
Have a go, see where the paint runs...take time to reflect . Sending lots of love to everyone x