Susie Short's Watercolor Journal - Spashes & Splatters of what's on my drawing board (or painting easel), paintings in progress, travels in pursuit of more painting possibilities. Previews and reports on watercolor workshops and upcoming watercolor DVDs.
Yesterday's sunshine is hiding behind the clouds this morning. But the lighting is good for photos.
I wandered around the Woodland Park Rose Garden taking photos and deciding where I wanted to set up my easel. About 15 minutes after I got everything set up it started to drizzle. Drizzle turned into rain and so I sat under my beach umbrella like a mother hen with all my painting gear stashed under my chair. From my sheltered spot I could still see some lovely rosebuds so I started a rosebud sampler page in my sketchbook.
Below I'll share photos of both my painting spot and my Rosebud Sampler Page
Later, the sun did break through and I was able to move around and paint some of the roses.
The gazebo I wanted to include as a focal point in my painting (below) will have to wait
until another visit to be completed but I did get it started!
Thanks for looking at my report on my Plein Aire Weekend.
If you live in the greater Seattle area I hope you will consider joining me for one of my plein air adventures. There are so many beautiful gardens to visit and paint...just not enough time!
For Day Two of my plein air weekend my destination was the beautiful rose gardens in Point Defiance Park. Accredited by the American Rose Society as an All American Rose selection display garden, Point Defiance Park has more than an acre of rose gardens, the oldest of which was established in 1895. The site includes a garden of miniature roses, arbors of climbing roses, and a quaint gazebo encircled by fragrant rose bushes.
After walking through the garden and taking some great shots of the beautiful roses I selected a seat in the shade of the gazebo and painted this soft peachy colored rose named Summer Dream.
"Altissimo" is a very tall bright red rose that always catches my attention. This quick sketch catches this beauty as it appeared against the clear blue sky. Too bad this rose doesn't live in my own back yard so I could see the rest of those little bud open and bloom.
My selection for the afternoon was this stunning bouquet of bright yellow orange roses named "About Face."
The variety of colors in this grouping was fun to paint and kept the painting interesting. The sun moved quicker than I could paint and visit with those passing by. As you can see the shadow of the gazebo started to block the sunshine and remind me that my time was running out.
About Face Sketch by Susie Short
Day Two was a success. Ahh, I'm happy!
Tomorrow is another day...... to paint!
Since my plein aire "Short Trip" to Mt Rainier was postponed due to the weather, I decided to take advantage of the time I'd set aside for painting and visit some wonderful gardens in the area. Roses were my intended target but at these gardens there are other attractions that can be very tempting to paint too. Friday July 29, 2011 Highline SeaTac Botanical Garden
Say Hello to Madeline! This adorable little artist painted along with me in Highline SeaTac Botanical Garden. Madeline will celebrate her seventh birthday August 5, 2011. I hope she gets some painting supplies for her birthday, she's got talent!!!
This is the spot in the garden where I painted with Madeline during the morning of July 29th. I was having too much fun chatting with the people visiting the garden and didn't finish my sketch before the light moved changing all the shadows. At the right is the sketch I painted before the light shifted, as you can see it remains a work in progress. If I can't make it back to the garden soon I'll finish it in my studio from the photos I took or better yet, paint the rest from memory. The sketches in my sketchbook are basically my "notes" to remind me of the colors, textures, and mood I experienced while on location.
Friday afternoon I moved to a shady spot with a good view of the water fountain near the heart of the rose garden. The fragrance in this area was heavenly! On the right you can see the first stages of my sketch of the fountain with the purple clematis climbing on the trellis in the background.
As you can see the sun was brightly shinning and the cast shadows made my subject even more intriguing and challenging.
My painting style includes a technique that is sometimes referred to as "alla prima."
Definition: ...with little or no preparation...in other words, I don't draw my subject before I start painting. I like to say "I draw with my brush as I paint."
As shown in the second photo I was able to add some of the roses and background to my sketch before I quit for the day. Again, the finishing touches will be added later. But I did get in most of the details on the fountain and I'm pleased with my little sketch.
These nice ladies were enjoying the garden and stopped for awhile to watch me paint and were kind enough to take my photo while I was painting.
Highline SeaTac Botanical Garden is located next to the community center north of the airport 13735 24th Ave S, SeaTac, WA See Map
If you speak to the nice staff when you visit tell them "Susie sent you!"