The subjects were mostly special Fritillarias. I knew Dianne really loves Fritillaria so the period I got her sketchbook was perfectly timed. I had to paint some Fritillaria for an other project. The other plant I painted was a twig of a Spiketail shrub I have in my garden. Stachyurus praecox is the Latin name.
So when that was done the next one had already arrived. It was Lorraine's. At the same time I had bought a Helleborus ericsmithii. Really nice and perfect for the sketchbook. I thought it would be wiser to finish it and then post the two books together since the costs are pretty high. So I started with the first flowers and all went well. But after a few days (I did about one flower a day) I got sick. Spring started and so did the flu season. When I got better I started a new flower and it went terrible. I really couldn't paint what I wanted and I felt so miserable. Not only because it didn't go well but mostly because it felt like messing up a nice page in someone else's sketchbook. Next day I tried again and again I failed to paint something good. Like my paints and brushes had totally different ideas for this sketchbook. I guess that I also wasn't recovered totally from that flu and I felt so, so bad. So I put it aside and in the next weeks I had a big mental struggle to start painting again. I tried a couple of times on scrap pieces and in my own sketchbooks but it felt so wrong and unpleasant.
Finally one day I felt a bit better and made the decision to stop for now with the watercolours and do only graphite sketches. I first did a test on separate piece of Bristol board and it went well. So I took the next sketchbook that had arrived (Terri's). I still couldn't look again at Lorraine's screwed up pages. I picked several flowers from my garden and started to draw.
Wow... it really went well!!! And finally after so many weeks I felt better about the project. It's one thing to suffer on your own from such a bad period but if it effects a project with 15 people it really is a high mountain to climb. It's all mental, I know, but once you get in that deep well it is a big struggle to get out of again. Anyway, Terri's got really pretty and I managed to paint in some bugs too to add some colour.
Dianne had asked me if she should keep Jarnie's sketchbook a little while longer but since it now felt better I thought I should hurry up now and get that one done as well. So, here's Jarnie's:
The Horntail was a nice surprise in the laundry room. My son Bertus picked a Cornflower to draw, so that's in it too. I just get so happy from the festive cornflower shapes.
There, done! Hope all four ladies will like my entries. In the end I enjoyed all four of them... apart from that huge hiccup (forgive me for that) ;)