Dahlias with a Mexican Platter Still Life

10 2009 Dahlias 16x12.jpg
Dahlias with a Mexican Platter – 16" x 12" (40.6 x 30.5 cm) – Oil on Canvas
{Flower Project 2009 - No. 1}
I started this painting the day after Susan Abbott’s workshop finished, a little over two weeks ago. The setup started out with the dahlias I had picked up at the farmers market in Old Town. While the backdrops and accompanying items were chosen for the colors. During the workshop we had a color exercise where we selected complementary color pair and then the neighboring colors of this pair, playing with warm and cool color choices. This painting is a play off of the magenta/violet of the flowers and the complementary color yellow that appears in various areas of the painting. I then selected greens and blues to be the second most common colors that connect the two complementary colors.

For the first three days of the painting I only worked on the flowers, as they were changing fast and would soon wither. After the flowers were pretty much developed I then focused on working on the other areas of the painting trying to incorporate all the lessons learned from Danni’s workshop. The biggest bit of insight I am still getting used to is the need to slow down and absorb what I see and take the time to really work to capture the image without overworking it. It is a fine line and I also have to fight against some levels of impatience as I want to get to the finish line, so I have been having to let go some and just enjoy the process of each brushstroke and new evolution the painting took as I would refine different areas.

After all it is the journey and the present that mean so much.

This is also the first of the 50 flower paintings I set out to complete in 12 months.