It’s not a new concept. Plein Air painters have been sitting in gardens and painting them for centuries. However, using the shapes and colors of the garden as a jumping off point to assemble something entirely new is a different way of looking at them for inspiration.
For me it all about shapes and colors. What shapes are formed in the garden with the light and shadows and the sometimes odd combinations of colors that pop up give me ideas for other interpretations but not necessarily a representation of what I am seeing.
While this little painted and appliquéd quilt features a literal echinacea bloom, the piecing to the right was inspired by what I saw in the shadows of the herb bed.
While the piecing in this quilt looks nothing like a garden, the colors were inspired by plants and flowers.
And even though these vessels that I sculpted of canvas resemble a blossom, they really are not at all. But the colors and the shapes of the interiors were inspired by some of the tiny details that flowers showcase.
I think the key to painting from the garden is to stick your nose in it. It is the up close peeks that help you notice. And conversely sometimes just squinting at the over-all will reveal shapes that you had never noticed before. Get out in your garden and come see me in mine!