June is a riot of color in our neighborhood, underscored by green that makes your eyes pop right out of your head. Even artists become almost immune to it. What caught my eye a couple of days ago, though, was a subtle icy pale pink. I know, we don’t usually think about pink being a cool color, but the poppies down the street stood out just because of their cold, frosty aloofness, nestled calmly in the fuzzy jungle of their own leaves.
My husband moved slowly behind me as I began this piece at the dining room table. I could tell that he was doing his “risk assessment”, trying to decide if he had enough bonus points built up from making my coffee that morning to offset the potential trouble from commenting on a painting-in-progress. He evidently decided he was on the plus side of the scale, so he said quietlly, “Aren’t poppies supposed to be orange?” My reaction clearly conveyed that the coffee had not been that good, and the next morning was going to require cinnamon rolls to make up for his gaffe. He quietly backed away. Smart man.
The background texture was a fun experiment. I had dripped laundry detergent onto the shelf liner in the laundry room cupboard, and as I was cleaning up the mess, I thought that maybe this chunk of plastic textured liner could be used as a sort of stamp. I spread watercolor over it, then laid it carefully onto the paper, pressed it down, and pulled it off – cool! It looked kinda like faint text from an old book. I was afraid that painting over it might smear it, but that didn’t become much of an issue.
My textile art often used a “page layout” approach, incorporating vignettes or geometric components separated by borders of varying widths. That happened here also, as if I was pasting graphic pieces into a page of text. The little patchwork in the corner is something I do sometimes as I prepare an image for posting online, a way to emphasize the palette used in the piece. Once a quilter, always a quilter!