Capturing Beautiful Peonies
This is my first attempt at the beauty of peonies. My process begins with a collection of deadheaded flowers from the garden at our home in SW Denver. My wife, Kathy, photographs the flowers and uploads the pictures to be digitized. I work with the images in a photo enhancement software to adjust placement, values, shadows, and contrast and compose a working draft.
Most of the time I stretch and prime my own canvases. Next, I lay down the primary base colors of the selected image. I always prefer using oil paint to create my paintings, rather than watercolor or acrylic paint, since it dries more slowly. Also, linseed oil thins the paint for mixing the perfect color. Hence, slower dry time allows more opportunity for blending and shading. Smells of oil paint and linseed oil fill my studio, sometimes located in the Great Room of our home. Finally, I seal the finished painting to preserve the integrity of the colors. I find the peony to be such an amazing flower. So many shapes and different shades of colors reflected from each petal: violet, white, pink and green. I find this flower fascinating to paint.