Back to roses again today – they are in full swing in the garden so it would seem a shame to ignore them. The bush that produced this flower is a particularly beautiful example. Its blooms vary from yellow to deep pinky reds; I’ve no idea what it’s called as it’s one we inherited when we moved to this house.

Rose pastelI plumped for pastels today, as I’ve been doing so much watercolour recently I fancied a change.¬†This picture was done on mountboard, almost entirely using the Conte hard pastel set I have, The one exception was a light flesh Reeves soft pastel which I used for some of the highlights on the petals. The foliage gave me a lot of trouble. I felt I just couldn’t get the greens I needed with the colours I had available to me.

I might try these roses again another time this summer, if I can catch them before they all finish, either using watercolour pens or paints. We’ll see.

I think that by the time Christmas arrives I’ll have quite a wish list of supplementary art materials. Must remember to add green shades of pastel to it!

English Rose

I’ve been pussyfooting around painting these English roses for some time (about 3 years, if I’m honest!). The blooms with their heart-shaped petals cascade down the front of our shed, mixed in with an old blowsy climbing rose. Oh, I’ve photographed them, but never knuckled down to getting them on paper. I had a suspicion that even one flower would be a massive challenge. Why is it that plants are just so hard? You’d think that since there seem to be no mechanics (straight lines, right angles, etc)¬† involved they would be a doddle. Hmm.

English rose watercolourI did this one outside, in just under an hour. The sun was shining and the watercolours dried really quicky – too quickly in some places. I started with the background, then worked forwards onto the flowers and finally the leaves. At 50 minutes I was still very unhappy with it. I decided to risk all with my fineliner, and I’m pleased I did as it really helped to sort out the foliage and give it some definition. There are still areas that I’m not thrilled about, but overall, it’s not so bad. Please don’t take my fineliner away!