|"Lotus and Dragonfly" (oil, 12" x 9")|
The lotus is one of my favorite flowers and I never get tired of painting them. Over the years I've painted them in watercolor, acrylic, and oil. The sculptural flower with the Buddhist association looks great in all mediums.
Last year in early June, the plein-air-painting class with Sara Linda Poly went to the waterlily pond at Green Spring Gardens Park. My first attempt at painting the lotus from life was a disaster. The lighting condition, however, was ideal and I came home with several terrific pictures. The following day, still smarting from the failure, I made another stab at the lotus. "Lotus and Dragonfly" was the result of my persistence. Since then, I've painted several more lotus paintings, small and large, and sold them all.
When a favorite client of mine asked me to do a larger version of "Lotus and Dragonfly," I wasn't sure whether it would work. I tried as he "begged" for it. And, boy, am I glad I listened! My initial fear was that the lone lotus flower and yellow green undersides of several lily pads will dominate the painting. As it turned out, there were enough details in the shadow areas to add depth and nuance to the bold composition.
In the small version, there was no room for playing; most subtleties had to be sacrificed for the clarity. Not so for "Brilliant Lotus." You can look at it for a long time and still find hidden "secrets." My client didn't want the dragonfly (there are actually three of them in the picture). So they went, as his wish was my command. I don't think they would have added much to the abstract beauty of the painting anyway. It is fun to paint big, using large brushes. It is also great to have a client with the sophisticated eye who appreciates and is willing to pay for original artwork. Thank you!