Field of cosmos flowers:
This photo was taken of a Kendal farm. That is, the farm next to the one our family owned on the East Rand, South Africa.
As you can see the outbuildings were neglected and occupied by vagrants who hung their washing on the fence between the two farms.
As to the watercolour I painted from the photograph:
I obliterated the obstacle of the fence and the farm machinery that was crowding the composition. Instead I added a lot more cosmos flowers to the scene. My intention was to create an impressionistic impression of a field of cosmos flowers and a make-shift line of washing, blowing gently in the last summer breeze.
`As artists we train ourselves to feel the quality of our environment, see beauty and movement in everything. To catch a vision we see beyond the harshness of reality’.
When I lived out in the country, I liked to feel the joy of the day and the impact of living in the country, by making a point of listening to the birds singing and tweeting as I hung my washing on the line. And feel the breeze has it whispered through my hair, and saw the velt (grasslands), seeds of weeds and wild flowers waving in the breeze.
How I painted the watercolour:
The painting may seem somewhat spotty close up, but if the painting is seen from a distance, you’ll see, it no longer looks spotty! But rather a contented homely ambience!
I blurred and lightened the hillside in the background to reduce spottiness, so that definition and highlights would be held within the middle of the painting format, where the darkest tones would show up the washing and the looseness of the cosmos flowers.
What the painting is all about:
Even though there is fine detail at the main point of interest, the watercolour was painted generally with freedom of expression to create a carefree mood. Because isn’t that what people feel when they see a field of cosmos, a feeling of freedom, light-hearted-ness, hope and joy of being alive.
I don’t like cosmos paintings when the composition is made up of a stiffly contrived posy of cosmos flowers. I like painting cosmos in their natural habitat, growing wild lose and free.
How do you like painting cosmos? And if you are not a painter, what appeals to you? If not a field of flowers growing wild perhaps then, a close-up abstract of one or two cosmos flowers surrounded with atmospheric energy?
If you want to see other photo demo blogs, you can start with ‘old willow stumps‘