Plants and Paints

Art Journal, Our Blog, Up Close & Personal, Watercolour

Hey guys, it’s been a while! I hope you are all doing well in this new year. I know we’ve been pretty silent in here. For me personally, I’ve been struggling to find a balance between my day job and keeping up with my creative side. On top of that, the pandemic has gotten me in all sorts of mood. Being unable to go home and see my family has sometimes made me feel down and hopeless. In trying to keep sane throughout this difficult time I’ve inadvertently discovered a new love – gardening. A close friend of mine actually influenced me to start, she had successfully grown all sorts of edibles inside her apartment and had shared her urban farming journey with me whenever we talked. So, in November I moved into an apartment with a balcony and started my gardening journey. I didn’t realise how much I would love it until I saw seeds I sowed starting to germinate and grow into “real” plants! There’s just something so amazing and humbling watching a single seed turn into a plant, a flower, something you could actually harvest and eat. So, in this post I just wanted to share with you what I’ve been doing in my garden and how that’s become inspiration for me to paint.

How I garden in my balcony with limited space.

So far my most successful accomplishment was growing a sunflower, a dwarf sunflower. It bloomed just before new year’s day which made my day extra special. Another plant that is looking promising is eggplant. I’m still waiting for it to flower and produce eggplants, but so far it’s been thriving with massive, healthy leaves. So, fingers crossed I’ll have some eggplants in a few weeks time! I think these successes encouraged me to grow more plants, so much so that I now need to control myself if I still want space in my balcony where I can stand (LOL!). From edibles, I started getting interested in house plants. Again influenced by a friend who is an expert in house plants. This pandemic has really led me to new things I never expected I would do!

Sure enough, gardening has taken more and more of my time and perhaps has made less space for me to paint. I’m hoping to create more balance between the two in the future. I also hope to try new things this year and share it with you. One of the new things that I did recently involved my love for painting and my plants. After my first house plants shopping spree, I bought 4 house plants – 1 pennywort, 2 varieties of Calatheas and 1 variety of Dieffenbachia. I decided to paint the Calatheas and Dieffenbachia, using it a live model, something I don’t usually do. I also tried to paint it with a different style.

Watercolour painting of the houseplants I bought.

I think we can all agree that living in the middle of a pandemic is no easy task. There’s no doubt that it takes a toll on our mental health one way or another and therefore it’s important to find ways to keep ourselves sane. I have definitely found peace in planting seeds and watching it grow into full grown plants. It definitely serves my creative side well too. I’ve leaned towards painting nature for a while now, and usually take inspiration from photos I take while travelling. Needless to say that travel has become a distant memory since this pandemic ensued. Having a mini garden outside in my balcony has provided me with the inspiration to create, the different shapes of leaves, the flowers that bloom, and the different stages of plant growth. It has all given me ideas to create. However, I’m still trying to find a balance between the increasingly busy workload from my daily job, time to garden and fulfilling my creative side. I’m slowly getting there and hopefully I’ll soon be able to share more artwork with you!

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