"Cummins Iris Garden"
11" x 14" Watercolor
The models await
Colorful hat among the Irises
The paintsite Chairs, Jenny and Sylvia, keep surprising us with new locations to paint. Jenny found Jim and Irene Cummins' Iris Garden on a tour of the gardens in Scotts Valley, a town in the Santa Cruz Mountains. The link will take you to an article about the garden. The couple grows Irises for love, not profit. About 20 artists carpooled to the location on a gorgeous, hot early May morning. The place is a treasure chest of historical farm implements.
An Iris bed
Healthy riding lawnmower
The sign reads "Welcome to the Garden of Weedin"
I could paint for a year here
The gardens are large and filled with a riot of Iris hybrids. I liked the contrasting colors of the gold and purple Irises and used three of them as my models. I like to zoom in on my subject. My paper was drying really fast, making it harder to mix color on the paper. At times I got some blooms which suggested the shapes of Irises in the background. I used negative painting around the happy accidents. The first pass appears on the paintsites blog. At my Friday critique, my group suggested I pull some purple down into the leaves and I wasn't happy with the middle Iris. I reworked these areas this morning.
The Cummins were so very friendly, spending time with us, serving us ice water, and educating us on the various hybrids. They were so delighted that we wanted to paint their garden. What a welcome! We gathered for lunch and viewed the morning's work.
Dick painted the barn with an imaginary