One of my goals for this spring and summer is to build up a catalog of flower reference photos. Since I’ve started painting flowers, I’ve found some good free resources (both in copyright and monetary terms) for references but I learn so much when I spend time with the flowers themselves.
Photos lie or at least can play some serous tricks. Spending time in the same room as the flowers helps me understand how everything is put together so that when I do go back to my references, I can translate what I’m seeing.
Today it’s daffodils. They have just started up in Oregon but it’s been so rainy it’s been impossible to go out and actually collect photos. Luckily a random trip to Whole Foods found a flower sale and daffodil bunches ready for the taking. I am filling up all of of my google storage one daffodil photo at a time.
You can see my reference photos are exactly that. Reference. They aren’t super stylized. The best ones, as much as I hate to admit it, are often shot wth my phone. Any really good shots, I’ll load to the sites I’ve been using , like Pixaby, to share in the reference photo love.
Reference photos are important, and they take time to collect. If I ever want to enter any of the formal shows like the Watercolor Society of Oregon, I need my own originals to work from. But currently I’m less worried about that and I’m more interested in studying the flowers through my lens and then learning how to translate that study onto my board.