Thursday, June 3, 2010

Garden Irises

This is a corner of my garden. I am going to a friend's garden to paint on saturday (if it does not rain) to work on a commissioned painting of her garden. I thought I should get warmed up so did this painting yesterday.
I learned a lot and this piece got me thinking about decision-making while painting. I find painting is a series of decisions, and my best paintings happen when I am not consciously aware that those decisions are being made; I am making them intuitively.
Originally this painting had more in it; the background behind the irises showed my neighbours garden. I changed this after asking myself 'what is the subject - the irises'. To bring more attention to them I cut out the detail behind. This decision gave large areas of colour for the eye to rest, but also made the background behind the painting shallower, more abstract in comparison to the plants.
I am happy with this piece but on the next one I will try and achieve more depth while still including the more abstract open areas of colour that I favour in my still lifes.
Painting landscape involves different decisions than painting still lifes and as with anything practice, practice, practice until it is intuitive.


  1. Yes, I agree that we just have to keep painting until it becomes hard wired. Garden scenes can be so overwhelming with all that is going on. Great job on this one and knowing what to eliminate.
    Thanks for leaving a comment on my blog.

  2. I truly believe that we learn something from every painting we do. And if this little beauty is any indication of what is to come...well, I can't wait!

  3. I like this one. Irises are happy flowers. Good work.

  4. No truer words said than the difference in painting still lifes from landscapes - and seascapes and figurative pieces. Who would ever believe they are each individual in execution?
    Your discipline pays off and you do create wonderful small pieces of art Tammy.

  5. Gardens are so inspiring..... this is a lovely painting.

  6. Love the two tones of the irises and the different greens in the different types of plants. Is this one done with your knives, Tammy?