16th, 17th and 18th April 2013: I spent three great days at Cambridge University Botanic Gardens painting Alpine flowers with tutor Reinhild Raistrick. Needless to say I spent a lot of time discussing techniques with the nine other students, and looking at plants, so did not get my painting completed, although I produced enough studies from which to be able to complete a proper painting in due course.
This beautiful yellow iris is indigenous to the areas of Iran, Iraq, Afghanistan, and Tadjikastan. Its habit stretches from rocky high places through stony outcrops down to field edges. In Cambridge University Botanic Gardens it is placed in the Eurasian Bed in the alpine glass house.
Over the three days of this refresher art course, the Iris showed me all her different faces. This was the main reason why I did not complete the painting, as each day I discovered something different so wished to record all that I saw. Beginning with a newly-opened flower and tight bud, ending with a clenching spiral dead head, and a new bud and flower.
The sketches here are not in any particular order as I was flitting from page to page filling in spaces as the mood took me.
There is enough drawing evidence here for me to produce a proper botanical painting in due course (and I promised Reinhild that I would email her the completed painting).
This is my Sketch: