May 6, 2014

Drawing and Looking

Each spring, I look forward to the blossoming of my neighbor's redbud tree, whose pink cloud of flowers I can gaze out upon from my kitchen and study windows.  Today I wanted to spend a little time drawing, so I thought I'd check out the redbud flowers, to see what they looked like close up.  To my great surprise--after 23 years of looking out at this tree--I found that the flowers are not just pink, but have a base of a deep rose color, with pink petals.

Often the particular shape of the component part of a flower has come as a surprise to me, when looked at close up, but not before the color.  I am grateful to my relatively new practice of drawing (begun in 2012 and described here) for making me slow down and look carefully.  There is so much to see. . .

It also interests me that in isolating one flower-filled twig of the tree, there is no hint of the cumulative effect of the blossoms on the whole tree.


  1. What vibrant colors! My own recent experience with color in a flower was the big prickly pear bush on the far corner of our AZ lot, furthest from the driveway. The buds are a bright magenta but the early flowers were a light orange. I kept waiting for the second color flowers to appear but finally realized that the outer magenta wrapper must shrivel away once the flower blooms.


  2. Great sketch. Yes, sketching does make you slow down and really see!!