Wednesday, 29 July 2009


Redcurrant ~ Ribes rubrum ~ Aalbes

I have a lot of currants (Ribes rubrum) in my garden right now. And I finally got to draw them this year. Previous years the Blackbirds where faster than me and ate my subject. Well, not the white ones but they really enjoy to hang around the red berries.
I'm still working hard on my Hydrangea drawing so this was a nice interlude. I made the white ones first, as a birthday present for a good friend of mine. It was made in one afternoon and it felt very good doing this. I decided to also draw the red ones. More difficult but less beautiful. Not only my drawing but also the real thing. The white berries are more transparent and therefor much more interesting. And drawing something transparent and white is a big challenge. But I think I did okay...

Whitecurrants ~ Ribes rubrum ~ Witte Aalbes

Thursday, 9 July 2009

Von Siebold Project

At the moment I'm working hard on a drawing for the Von Siebold Exhibition which will be held in Het Von Sieboldhuis in Leiden. It's an exhibition about the plants Von Siebold brought from Japan to Europe. Drawings from that era will hang next to botanical drawings made by artists from the Dutch Society of Botanical Artists. During this exhibition there will also be a special walk around the Hortus Botanicus in Leiden where a lot of his plants were planted when Von Siebold returned to Europe.

Hydrangea serrata 'Preziosa'

The artists from the society got a long list of plants in the Hortus. We all could pick one or two plants to draw. I picked the Hydrangea. It's a shrub I think I would never draw for fun. Too much flowers I guess. But this is a nice oppertunity to try something different. So I thought...
This Hydrangea is so difficult and it's a huge struggle. The sketching was easy and fast. I drew 3 twigs with flowers. The next stage was to make a good composition on the paper. The size of the image is the same for all artists (about 32 x 40 cm).

Hydrangea composition

I tried out a little flower first to choose the right colours. That was ok. Now I'm working on my first big flowerhead on the bottom left. It is more blue than the little practice flower I did before. And after a few flowers the colours looked too dirty for me.

Hydrangea project progress

Now I'm trying a different approach: colours first, shadows later. I hope it will work.
Sorry for the bad pictures, I can't scan this and have to use my little camera and Photoshop. I will scan the end result though :)

Hydrangea 3

If it will finish and not end up in the dustbin.