I always had a deep connection with plants as I grew up close to nature, helping on my grandparents’ small farm with vegetables and crops. For me, it comes natural to be surrounded by plants wherever I live. Despite my early love for plants, it was only recently that I started to closely observe them. Art played a big part in this.
At the beginning of my art journey, buildings were my main interest of subject. It took me almost two years to gradually shift my attention to plants. In this blog post I wrote about the first autumn when I started to observe trees and leaves. Since then, exploring and understanding flowers, plants, and the nature in general, made a big part of my art journey. This is how I ended up following a part of a honeysuckle’s life cycle. Drawing the same subject over and over again gave a deeper understanding, and documenting my observations seemed like a straightforward idea.
Picking Wild Flowers
The story wouldn’t be complete, if I wouldn’t write about the idea of picking wild flowers. There was a time when I was totally against picking any flower or to keep cut flowers in the house. Since I started my art journey, this strong view began to fade. I realised that it’s ok to pick flowers (unless they are legally protected), and also it’s ok to lift my home’s spirit with them. If I would like to observe closely a plant, I need to hold it in my hand and I need to spend more time observing it. As I don’t have a garden, this is nearly impossible without taking it home. So I think it’s fine to pick wild flowers for joy or for study purposes as long as we respect the nature. The key here is to be always mindful. Of course, if the plant is legally protected, that should be only admired and left where it is.
The Honeysuckle Project
I found this honeysuckle in a nearby forest. It amazed me with its unusual leaves and flowers. In my mind, honeysuckle is a trailing plant with yellow and white flowers and a heavenly scent (which is the Japanese honeysuckle or Lonicera japonica). This species looked very different from that, so I wanted to learn more about it. I took it home and started to draw it almost every day. The overall shape doesn’t seem complicated to sketch, but each time I focused on different aspects of the plant, which made the process more enjoyable. I also tried to vary the drawing styles and play with different techniques. I was hoping that it will bloom, so I paid extra attention to the buds. It was interesting how the colours of the plant changed over time. So come along and follow two weeks in a life of a perfoliate honeysuckle (Lonicera caprifolium).