Tuesday 19 February 2013

[ORCHIDS] Study sketch of Paphiopedilum praestans

Alongside with the Paphiopedilum gloucopyllum illustration, I am working on the colour test of Paphiopedilum praestans before all the flowers wither and flop. This study will guide me to paint the illustration with proper colours.

The first flower withered and just flopped this afternoon, slightly turned more yellowish :(

Thursday 14 February 2013

[ORCHIDS] WIP of Paphiopedilum glaucophyllum

Starting to work on the Paphiopedilum glaucophyllum illustration yesterday, I met new challenges.

I have never painted on ±A2 (38 x 56 cm) sized paper beforehand. This "big" size format requires me to buy new stretch boards and to find comfortable positions to paint. With my small table easel, it is hard to feel comfortable (believe me) especially for someone with a big "38 weeks" belly. I stood, but quickly felt worn out. Then I put the easel lower on another chair so I can sit while painting. It is better but I feel stuck when I want to lean forward to work on the details. What a challenge, isn't it? :p

Another challenge was when I found my specimen lost its flower buds and two munching caterpillars nicely sat on the leaves. I was so broken-hearted for the flower buds. But I moved on to paint the glossy orchid leaves, which is something new for me! If you notice, I hardly painted any leaves. Thanks to the caterpillars I do now.

To paint the glossy leaves I use wet on wet washes a lot. I also try to apply subtle bluish highlight as I saw on Katty Pickles's wonderful botanical works. It was not done yet, but today's progress (especially the leaves) lifted up my spirit :)