Thursday, October 6, 2011

Birthday azaleas

Pink Azaleas 6x6 oil, copyright 2011
click to purchase this painting

My husband often gets me flowers on my birthday and this year was no exception.  Typically they are cut flowers and it's always a race to paint them before they wither and die - usually a losing race.  But this year he bought me a little azalea bush so I was able to take my time.  I wish I could plant it outside and let it grow into a huge bush, but unfortunately the soils around here are too alkaline, so it will just have to take its chances inside.  It is sitting in my kitchen window above the sink, so hopefully that means I will remember to water it.  Plants in my house need to be quite drought tolerant.

I played with this one a little bit, curious to see how little I could detail I could go into and still have an easily recognized subject.  In the end I went back to the individual flowers for some touch up work, but mostly left the leaves as is.  For some reason I tend to shy away from using black, worried that it will dull the palette, but I'm getting used to the idea that a little bit here and there in the shadows really makes the highlights stand out.  


  1. Belated happy birthday.

    Fabulous painting Erica.I know how you feel about black, but it is great for increasing contrasts, as you have done so well here.

  2. Thank you Sue. I vaguely recall having an instructor in college who discouraged the use of black and white, I think maybe that's where it comes from. Funny though, I seem to have overcome my aversion to white.