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by Jude Wiesenfeld, posted by Deb Shaw

Lesley Randall with one Aristolochia gigantea flower. Photo by Jude Wiesenfeld, © 2018.

Lesley Randall with one Aristolochia gigantea flower. Photo by Jude Wiesenfeld, © 2018.

Lesley Randall’s workshop, held at the LA County Arboretum and Botanic Garden in Acadia, was very informative, focusing on Aristolochiaceae, commonly known as the Dutchman’s Pipe Family of plants. Lesley began the workshop with a lecture on the origin of the Aristolochiaceae. They first appeared about 30 million years ago, when most of us were barely starting our careers!

We examined, both in hand and through our microscopes, the distinguishing characteristics to look for while drawing. Lesley encouraged us to write down measurements and notes on the specimens for future clarification in our drawings and to include for illustration work.

Aristolochea gigantea seed pod. Photo by Jude Wiesenfeld, © 2018.

Aristolochea gigantea seed pod. Photo by Jude Wiesenfeld, © 2018.

It was fascinating to see how the different techniques (stippling vs. lines) gave a variety of results. Sometimes a broken line worked better than an unbroken one! Lesley supplied great examples of this in handouts.

The final drawings are started with an outline and then the details are added with stippling. It is important to stipple with a purpose: i.e., namely to clarify a characteristic, show shape, create depth and/or show color pattern. Also, Lesley stressed how important it is to keep your paper, hands and workspace CLEAN.

Lesley encouraged us to research other artists’ work to learn about technique and mentioned Bobbi Angell as someone to study.

Two books recommended by Lesley Randall: "Botany in a Day: The Patterns Method of Plant Identification" by Thomas J. Elpel, ISBN-13: 978-1892784353, ISBN-10: 1892784351; and, "Guide to Flowering Plant Families" by Wendy B. Zomlefer, ISBN13: 9780807844700, ISBN-10: 0807844705. Photo by Jude Wiesenfeld, © 2018.

Two books recommended by Lesley Randall: “Botany in a Day: The Patterns Method of Plant Identification” by Thomas J. Elpel, ISBN-13: 978-1892784353, ISBN-10: 1892784351; and, “Guide to Flowering Plant Families” by Wendy B. Zomlefer, ISBN13: 9780807844700, ISBN-10: 0807844705. Photo by Jude Wiesenfeld, © 2018.

Lesley was a fantastic teacher and very generous with us all. I hope she will consider other workshops in the future.

[NOTE: click on any of the thumbnails above to view the images larger, in a slide show format.]

by Melanie Campbell-Carter, posted by Deb Shaw

Aloe broomii hybrid, Melanie Campbell-Carter, © 2018. Image protected by Digimarc.

Aloe broomii hybrid, Melanie Campbell-Carter, watercolor on paper, © 2018. Image protected by Digimarc.

BAGSC member Melanie Campbell-Carter is returning to Texas wearing her Botanical Artist hat! As fellow members know, in 2014 Melanie relocated to Southern California from Texas to study botanical art.

Melanie was thrilled to see an article in the March 2018 issue of The Botanical Artist about a new ASBA Circle in north Texas. The Circle’s first juried exhibition, Botanical Art: Flowers, Fruit and Fungi, will take place June 14 – August 9, 2018, at the Botanical Research Institute of Texas (BRIT) in Fort Worth.

Now living and painting full-time in Tucson, Melanie will be exhibiting two new paintings in Fort Worth, Aloe broomii hybrid and Caesalpinia pulcherrima.

Contact Denis Benjamin for more information about the Botanical Art Collective (BAC) in Texas, or if you would like to join. BAC also has a public Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/groups/1502598476445397/.

Caesalpinia pulcherrima, Melanie Campbell-Carter, © 2018. Image protected by Digimarc.

Caesalpinia pulcherrima, Melanie Campbell-Carter, watercolor on paper, © 2018. Image protected by Digimarc.

by Leslie Walker and Deb Shaw

Leslie Walker delivering her Hechtia argentea to the World Bromeliad Conference. The painting is wrapped in bubble wrap. Photo by Robert Kopfstein, © 2018.

Leslie Walker delivering her Hechtia argentea to the World Bromeliad Conference. The painting is enclosed in a plastic bag. Photo by Robert Kopfstein, © 2018.

BAGSC member Leslie Walker delivered her commissioned graphite drawing of Hechtia argentea to be shown at the World Bromeliad Conference 2018. This year’s conference was held in San Diego, May 29 – June 3, 2018.

The Hechtia argentea is endemic to Mexico. This Bromeliad has a thick stem, really almost a trunk covered with the remains of old leaves, similar to the appearance of a palm tree skirt. The leaves are covered with tiny white scales, hence the name, “argentea” which means “silvery.”

The plant specimen had many more leaves; the challenge of drawing the Hechtia was editing out which leaves to draw, in order to be both true to the plant and yet make it understandable to view.

The artwork was on display during the World Bromeliad Conference.

Hechtia argentea by Leslie Walker, © 2018. Partial image (cropped) of artwork, taken with an iPad.

Hechtia argentea by Leslie Walker, © 2018. Partial image (cropped) of artwork, photo taken with an iPad.

by Patricia A. Mark and Deb Shaw

Olga Eysymontt will be teaching two botanical art workshops this summer at the Los Angeles County Arboretum and Botanic Gardens (LA Arboretum) through the Extension Program at Otis College of Art and Design.

The first is a two-day drawing and painting workshop, “Heirloom Tomatoes in Watercolor/Colored Pencil. The focus for this workshop will be techniques for conveying the perception of light and shadow, mixing color and continuous tone. Prior experience in drawing botanical subject matter is helpful. A supply list is on the Otis workshop registration site (included on the link below):
Heirloom Tomatoes in Watercolor/Colored Pencil
Saturday, July 7, and Sunday, July 8, 2018
9:30 am – 3:30 pm
Science Lab Classroom
Cost: $185
LA Arboretum & Botanic Garden (link to map)

The second two-day drawing and painting workshop, “Eggplants in Watercolor/Colored Pencil,” will be held in August. This workshop also will cover the techniques for conveying light and shadow, mixing color, and continuous tone. Changing the subject matter from tomatoes to a variety of eggplants allows exploration of different techniques and effects. A supply list is on the Otis workshop registration site (included on the link below):
Eggplants in Watercolor/Colored Pencil
Saturday, August 18, and Sunday, August 19, 2018
9:30 am – 3:30 pm
Oak Room
Cost: $185
LA Arboretum & Botanic Garden (link to map)

Both workshops will be held indoors at the LA Arboretum. Class details will be sent to registrants. There are still a few seats remaining. Take one or both classes!

Questions? Call Otis Extension at 310-665-6850, or email extension@otis.edu

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