I had the bright idea of looking at Hydrangeas with my new art group meeting on Wednesdays.
Hydrangeas do have a bit of a reputation for being rather dull, standing as a a lonely shrub in a neglected suburban front garden. For some reason I immediately think of Hyacinth Bouquet! perhaps it's because her hats remind me of full blown hydrangea flowers. Not to mention the Queen Mother!!
But look closer and they are the most complex of flowers and when they start to go over in Autumn, they have an amazing array of hues and textures within them. They often have a range of colours within their complex pom pom shape and each small floret has a lovely self contained simple shape which twists and turns to create movement and interest.
So I see them as an opportunity to practise observation and drawing, to use different texture making tools, to employ negative painting technique and to create vibrant colour mixes.
Yesterday I spent the afternoon doing a painting of a white hydrangea from a photograph. (Although I have gathered plenty of live examples of the flower in the studio as well.)
Really enjoyed the painting. I will upload the step by step stages next time.