Plant form – Honesty seed head ripening

Plant form - Honesty seed head ripening

Before the seed head ripens to brown and silver it goes through a range of pink, red and green. This year was good, not a lot of rain in the summer, hot and dry, so very little black mould to discolour the drying seed head. I used indian and acrylic ink for this painting, reworking an oil pastel sketch from early summer. Throughout the year I fill sketch books with drawings, initially to record my idea of the transformation of plants but always with a focus that this is a resource for future artwork.
I use photographs when the weather is too cold or wet, or I am rushed for time but my preference is to work from my first impression recorded by drawing.

RHS Hyde Hall, Essex, UK – Rose hip sketch with ink colour test

RHS Hyde Hall, Essex, UK - Rose hip sketch with ink colour test

I visited RHS Hyde Hall Garden, Creephedge Lane, Rettendon, Essex last week with my sketchbook. This extract is a pen sketch of rose hips with an acrylic ink test strip. The test paper is used to work out the colours I want ready for use when I start on another artwork. There are always adjustments to the ink mixes as I proceed but to have approximate colours means I can work more fluidly.
RHS Hyde Hall Garden is one of my regular haunts, even in winter, but one of my favourite times is now, when plants and trees are fruiting or seeding with the late blast of summer flowers. But if visiting in June for the roses you have to remember to breathe out as all you want to do is take in all the different rose scents.