Shevaun Doherty, who also has one of the best botanical/ nature art blogs out there!
Also being able to paint whatever I fancy painting with plenty of time is a luxery, there's never a problem finding something for a quick study and I always keep my eyes open, constantly scanning for the next subject! .....It might just be something I spot while on the way to the shops, I often stop the car and collect a few fruits or find some interesting leaf or branch lying on the ground! I add as little or as much as I want to each entry and some pages are more finished looking than others.
In the past I never used to keep a sketchbook and kept rough work in boxes and on bits of paper but in recent years I've been re-educated into seeing the benefits of keeping a good sketchbook.
In addition to the project, I now keep several other sketchbooks which act as a plant library or painting and drawing diary. It enables me to paint things that I might otherwise forget about or just not bother with, usually because of a lack of time. Sketchbook work doesn't require a huge investment in time, so I often paint flowers and seeds from my travels or just document plants thought the year along with personal notes, it doesn't matter whether they are finished or not. It's proving an invaluable resource and making notes helps with the botany too. Sketchbooks remind me of where I was and what I was doing at a particular time....I remember where the plant was and who I was with....... and all the little things that were going on around each entry at that point in time.
|No. 5 A change of medium, Graphite Clematis from mums garden for Sarah's book. Drawn at mum and dad's house (July, August)|
All of the artists working on the project use the same type of book, the Stillman & Birn Zeta series, hardbound, 8.5 x 5.5 cm, smooth, 270gsm,. Previously I thought that there was no decent sketchbook paper, but this is a really great book! I've purchased several now, in different sizes. Initially it felt a bit different because I pretty much always work on Fabriano Artistico for everything but I got used to it very quickly and love it!
|No. 4 Dying anemone and a dead bee resurrected! For Jarnie's book. This sprawling plant had seen better days, I found the bee dead Queen bee in the porch. Painted in my previous house shortly before I moved ( May, June)|
|No. 3 Fox Grapes and grape hyacinth for Terri's book. I grew these plants in pots from the bulbs painted in my own sketchbook cover pages at the start of the project (see below). ( March, April).|
|Bulbs seemed suitable for the beginning!|