Monday, March 7, 2016

Bradford Pear and Hyacinth from Life

 Bradford Pear flowerng tree watercolor on paper, 3" x 5"

Hyacinth bud about to bloom, watercolor on paper 3" x 5"

Two pages in my little Strathmore Visual Journal today with Sakura Koi pocket box pan watercolors. I did pencil under them but haven't inked. 

I went out to get my prescription, so while waiting painted the Bradford Pear blooming in the parking lot. I left out most of the rest, buildings and cars and asphalt, in favor of a field and some more distant trees or shrubbery. Brightened the sky too using a cobalt blue hue that I suspect is actually Pthalo Blue from its brightness - albeit Red Shade.

Bradford Pears are an invasive ornamental tree. They bloom copious white blossoms in the spring, leaf out bright and green then in the fall become gorgeous again shading from lemon yellow through oranges to red and even a red-violet. They're a bit small for trees or really large for shrubs, tend to be symmetrical and seed themselves easily. The fruits are tiny and bitter, birds eat them and spread them - and of course they are invasive so they may crowd out native shrubs and trees sometimes. But they are beautiful and still sometimes planted on purpose.

Then once I got home I set out my impulse purchase, a $1 hyacinth in a pot. Most of my life I've seen and been tempted by those springtime racks of flowering little plants, some annuals and others perennials. Usually I didn't have a place to plant it. 

Sometimes I got talked out of it in favor of buying seeds instead that somehow I never followed through on planting, if staying with people who have  a yard. But I'm disabled! The more labor intensive type of gardening is not necessarily the best idea for someone with limited physical activity!

So instead of going overboard on them I bought one little hyacinth and I love it. The color's a nice rich violet-blue and I'm sure it will bloom bright. It may even survive  from year to year the way the many jonquils around here do. Kitten helped me plant it in the patch in the front where I usually sit outside, so I'll enjoy its blooming and maybe for years more see it split and expand providing a complement to the bright yellow jonquils.

Even if it doesn't, it made me happy and I painted it.

A chicken pecked it already so we may have a problem later on - though it will be raining for the next few days so I might be doing more indoor stuff from references. Or cats. It's not like I don't have several beautiful models inside!


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