Iris

Iris

I have recently returned from France , the flower of the moment was definitely the Iris. I had never painted an iris and was asked how I would go about painting one, I promised next year we would have a go....so yesterday I thought I had better see if I could paint one !!!

1.

 

So armed with a reference photo from Pixabay, my paints and water I sketched out the rough outline, and began. The puzzle ,always, with a new subject is figuring out how you can make the paint 'read' as the subject you are painting. I knew i didn't want to be too precise, I also wanted a vibrant finished piece...I swallowed hard and set off.

2. 

 

I began by spraying the paper then dropping in the colour, I wanted this part to be loose, and see if I could get the veins on the flower's petals. I was also looking for lights and darks.

there is a lot going on all at once, and I am feeling my way though , this could all go horribly wrong but be brave, and just put it all down to experience if it doesn't work.

 

3.

 

 

Working quickly, wet in wet, I am adding and taking away, these colours stain so they are difficult to remove, Alizarin Crimson, rose, Cobalt blue, then a drop of yellow. All good fun but sometimes it all seems a bit out of control. I am working things out as I go along seeing what happens and responding it.

4.

 

Now stepping back as the painting dries , I can see where I want to put in some darker tones, to show where the petal is folded or in shadow.

 

5

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Working through the tones step by step, standing back and really looking at what I need to change. It isn't an exact representation of the photo ( at all) but the reference photo helps me to see where the shadows lie. This piece is turning out to be much tighter than I anticipated, which is often the case with a new subject , you need to know a subject well before you can be very wild and free.I thinks it needs something to make it 'pop'

6.

 

So I decide to add a background. I put my darkest colours next to the lightest parts of the petals to really show the light. I love letting my imagination go a bit wild, and adding colours I just like, 

7.

 

And so my first ever iris is finished, I like the way the yellow runs into the background, I like to let the watercolour do it's thing . 

Have a go at something new, and have fun x

 


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