52/52 Botanical & Natural Science Art- Painting #1

Week #1- Painting # 1- Mr. PURPLE

My first painting finished for 2012 is a Datura, Datura metel. It is in the Family: Solanaceae. some of the common names are Purple Horn-of-Plenty, Jimpson Weed, and Devils Weed. This particular variety is called Mr. Purple! It is native to Southern China.

The plant is considered an ornamental plant. It is poisonous so don't let children or animals ingest it. (Adults too!) It grows in warm, tropical and sub-tropical climates. I had a white version of it when I lived in NJ and every year it died to the ground, spreading seeds and would re-seed and sprout in other locations. I am collecting seeds from this plant too in hopes of it doing the same. We had a frost the other night and the plant is now shriveled. I got to it just in time to get the color correct. Not bad for the beginning of January!

I started with an under tonal drawing in graphite and painted over the graphite drawing in gouache. The painting took a short period of time compared to the drawing and tonal drawing that I did off and on since this past fall.

Several of you have asked me about how I capture my images digitally. I have an old Epson 4180 Perfection scanner. It is about 6 years old or more. It only scans 8.5 x 11 at a time. This painting is 14" x 18" and I scanned it into the computer in 6 pieces. The pieces slightly overlap one another. I then used Adobe Photoshop, PhotoMerge to "stitch" the painting together. I clean up the background and play with the color balance so the final scan is ready for high quality printing. I scan everything in at 300 dpi. It is relatively easy as I have been doing it for 6+ years. I found that the cost of having it done professionally was not cost efficient and I was able to do as good a job…only it takes me longer……. time versus available cash.

I hope you have a wonderful weekend and I look forward to your comments and questions. Please ask away. I love hearing from you!

 

Mindy