Parrot Tulip Irene watercolour wanderings
The Parrot Tulip Irene shouted at me, in a sizzling blaze of orange and purple. Therefore it had to become a watercolour sketch. There is one notable talent an artist needs and that is to be observant (yes I mean nosy!) On every wander and walk an artist has to be prepared to sketch and photograph. No opportunity must be missed.
nosy curious I always look into people’s gardens. Now I don’t lean on a gateway, stare and sketch as I’ve seen others do at my garden. I prefer to be discreet, taking a quick snapshot of a plant or flower that catches my eye, but not of the whole garden. Usually it will be of a flower overhanging a garden wall.
Parrot tulips on Display
Now this Parrot Tulip Irene was part of a group of tulips planted in the grass verge, long entrance to a cottage near me. I was on one of my wanderings to capture the colours of early spring, so sketch book and watercolour pencils were to hand. There was a colourful display of red, purple and orange tulips before me. I decided to take a few snapshots of the tulip flower heads.
The Parrot Tulip Irene really caught my eye. With it’s crinkly orange petals beginning to unfold. I knelt down and made a quick pencil sketch of the flowerhead unfolding the most. Then used watercolour pencils to highlight the ranges of colours within the petals.
Watercolour pencils are useful for a quick sketch. They offer a dry solution to adding colour to a quick pencil sketch, but you can also create a wash of colour if you need to.
Parrot tulip Irene watercolour process
It was only when I got back to the studio that I discovered the variety of parrot tulip I’d just sketched. First I painted a strong yellow wash across the petals. Then added brushstrokes of a vibrant orange watercolour mix. I added stronger layers of orange, using the brush to create movement within the petals. Then I applied a vivid red watercolour mix to the petals for definition.
I had left areas on the petals for the streaks of purple with a slight tinge of pink. Also I noticed the stem of the tulip had an almost purple, deep chocolate colour becoming a deep green hue.
The Parrot Tulip Irene is a wondrous cacophony of a fiery blaze, with it’s yellows, bright oranges and purple flames on display.