“Be yourself; everyone else is already taken.” ....Oscar Wilde

Friday, 30 September 2016

Zebra Plant and Partying

With not much spare time over the last week I'm amazed that I have something to show for the Paint Party Friday link up, but here I am. 
I actually never got as far as the studio because basically the wood burner was lit and it was beautifully cosy in the kitchen. 
Whilst moving my daughter from A to B in Edinburgh (see here if you missed the post) I saw a very sad plant. 
My daughter didn't want to keep it and so I just 'had' to rescue it. 
I loved the colours of the leaves and the under side of the leaf feels like velvet. 
It was far too pretty to abandon... so here it is. 
Bright and perky now and ready to join the party!

I've since discovered that it is the zebra plant (scientific name - calathea zebrina) a perennial foliage plant which displays fairly large ovate leaves a the tips of it's long stalks, growing up to 1 metre tall... if I'm lucky!
I had been contemplating autumn leaves and autumnal colours so this fitted right in.
It's a beautiful bright fresh morning this morning, that sings of autumn... there's no deigning it... autumn has arrived.
I've not finished the leaf as you can see, but I'm using the layering technique that Tracey Fletcher King taught me, so there's a fair way to go yet. I always get so far in this process and then think that perhaps I should have used a good piece of paper and not my journal. 
Ho hum... Does this happen to you too?
Well I've got over a hundred spring bulbs to plant up today, so I better get a wriggle on if I want to do it whilst the sun is shining.
I hope you have a fabulous Friday and a great weekend lies ahead.
I'm also linking up with Alexander's Sunday Sketches
Alexandra is staying in the UK for a few months and is hosting Sunday Sketches from this side of the pond. If you'd like to see her illustrations, plus lots more through the link then you can use the button in my sidebar. 
Thanks for your visit.

40 comments:

  1. The leaf looks wonderful. Have fun planting those bulbs! Happy PPF, hugs, Valerie

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    1. Thanks Valerie, I only planted about a third of the bulbs and I can't say it was actually fun, but it was a beautiful sunny warm autumn day and I had a robin singing in a tree above my head.
      Not a bed way to spend the day

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  2. probably should get bulbs into the garden oo but its raining, oh well have until december to get them in the round lol

    your watercolour painting of the leaf is really well done, great greens to it :)

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    1. Thanks Jennifer,
      The rain has moved up this way today, which has produced gorgeous rainbows. Yesterday was truly a fantastic day, so I can't complain. I only managed to get about a third of bulbs in because it wasn't 100... in fact there are 800 bulbs!!!

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    2. o.0 800! glad we only have about 75 lol to plant

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    3. It's amazing that the person who bought them isn't available to plant them! (Typical eh?) :/

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  3. Ha, yes, happens to me too! Love the name of the plant, of coursešŸ¤—.Can't wait to see the layers all come together!

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    1. Hi Minnemie, I've managed to put another layer on to the leaf this morning and now I'm waiting for it to dry, to see what else might be needed.

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  4. Replies
    1. Thank you Clare, have a great weekend :D

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  5. That poor abandoned plant was meant to be your muse! Good thing you rescued it.

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    1. I thought so too, although when I rescued it I wasn't thinking about painting it. I just thought it was too pretty to be left.
      It's looking so much happier this morning :D

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  6. Maybe not in the painting process you speak of but in other drawings and such i often wish i had used a better paper... Lovely art this week Neesie. And congrats on reviving that plant.. they can be very fussy about the amount of moisture in the soil. Hugs! deb

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    1. This morning I'm still thinking that I should have used better paper. I didn't plan on creating a masterpiece (ha as if) but I'm sure it would look better on quality paper.
      I'm pleased to report Deb that the plant is doing really well. So basically I saved a life this weekend! Wow ;D

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  7. what a lovely place to sketch I like the colours of the leaves

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    1. Sometimes I favour the kitchen table instead of the studio because it can be warmer there, but also I'm in the mix of what's going on. That's possibly not the best idea as there's always something to distract me.

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  8. Denise, your zebra plant leaf is gorgeous and beautifully done. Once I took a botanical illustration course (5 days) and all I accomplished was one basil leaf and a scene of a plant by a window.

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    1. Aww thank you so much Faye, I really appreciate your kind words.
      I can't believe your course took 5 days to create that amount of work. It must have been intense. I'm also thinking that you cold probably paint any botanical piece beautifully without attending a course.

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  9. beautiful inspired leaf! Nice plant, great rescue!

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    1. Well it looks that way Christine, because the plant is looking great this morning. I think all it needed was a little water never mind TLC!

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  10. That plant looks so pretty in that burlap bag... lovely painting too! Fall is so beautiful but it's been a bit chilly. Your table looks so cozy! Enjoy your week!

    Hugs Giggles

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    1. Isn't it just... it looks great this morning and who would have thought a little water would be all it needed (tongue in cheek here)
      I'm just put another layer on the leaf and am now waiting for it to dry.
      I made a mistake about the bulbs... it wasn't 100 it was 800 so needless to say I only managed to plant about a third of them.
      It was a fabulous warm sunny day though, with a robin singing his little heart out in the tree above my head.
      I'm saving the remaining planting until tomorrow when the weather supposed to be good. There's a bit of a chilly breeze passing through today.

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  11. Hi Denise. I love Zebra plants. They are so pretty. Your leaf is a perfect example. I can't remember if you have a cat, Zebra plants are toxic for cats. It has turned cold and wet and foggy here. Have a happy weekend.

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    1. Hi Nicole, I've added more layers to the leaf this afternoon.
      I don't have a cat but I do have a mini shihtzu dog. I'm wondering if it's only toxic if the leaf is eaten. In that case, we'll be okay because Madame Muffy would never eat a leaf.
      I've moved it into a spare room just in case.
      Our weather is behaving at the moment which is wonderful and I'm appreciating every minute of it.
      Happy weekend to you too.

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    2. Ohh good no cat you should be fine. LOL I am freezing, glad your weather is OK for now. I joined in on Sunday Sketches and have a new face. Hope you have time to check it out. This one was difficult for me. Sending happy Sunday energy to you.

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    3. Still enjoying beautiful weather here Nicole, but the night's are turning chilly. I'll certainly nip across to see yours and all the other Sunday Sketches soon. In the meantime stay cosy and have a great week :D

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  12. Replies
    1. Thank you Susi, I am pleased that the plant survived. I've added more layers earlier today.

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  13. As I always work in layers in really interested to see how your painted layers progress.

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    1. I've added more layers this afternoon Morag, and I'm pleased with the result. I just wish it was painted on better quality paper.

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  14. I love it, Neesie. Like the laying technique. So glad you rescued that plant from demise

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    1. Me too Latane, the plant is looking great and even has a new leaf about to unfurl.

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  15. What a lovely painting and what a lovely plant. I'm glad you rescued it.

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    1. Thank you for your lovely comment Lisa. I'm glad I rescued it too. We have a new leaf about to unfurl already so I think it's happy here.

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  16. What a gorgeous plant...stunning leaves! I'm glad you rescued it and your sketch is just as beautiful...very nice work, Neesie!

    Have a lovely week ~ :)

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    1. They just caught my eye Serena, even in their sorry state, but I'm please to report it's looking afa bonnie as they say.
      It's obviously happy at being saved.

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  17. I'm so happy you rescued the lovely zebra plant, and your leaf painting is lovely too.

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    1. Me too Julie because it's looking very happy now. It's even produced a new leaf already.

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  18. Wonderfully painted zebra leaf. I really enjoy painting leafs as no leaf is exactly the same. :) How are you liking those paints?! One of my favorite sets.

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