Wednesday, May 24, 2006

A foliage study: Hosta

Those of you who have seen my work know that I focus on botanical motifs. Most recently I've been doing 3-D carvings of maple (Glory of Autumn series and Dylan's Song) and oak leaves (Quercus rubra). One of the ways I achieve such realism in my carved vessels, besides the fact that I'm a botanist in my day job, is the intense study I make of foliage. I love looking at leaves up close and personal - sometimes by just holding them in my hands, sometimes through the lens of a camera, and sometimes under the dissecting microscope. Here is an example of a photographic study of foliage using Hosta as an example. These hostas were growing in Whetstone Park of Roses - a place Steve and I like to walk with Emma.

What I'm specifically looking for in these photographic studies is the way the light plays off the leaves, how the leaves curl and fold, how the veins and laminar surfaces appear. I'm drawn to the work of Georgia O'Keefe and I like to think that the intense scrutiny I do of leaves and leaf surfaces help me to achieve something special in my work.

No comments: