Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Sketch of a Monstera Plant, Monstera Study, by Canadian Artist Kim Blair

Monstera Study
graphite, pen and ink, watercolor wash
9x8 on paper

My eyes were craving green yesterday, so I packed up a few art supplies and headed off to Muttart Conservatory for a few hours of photography and sketching.  Here in Edmonton we have four glass pyramids, each with its own distinct environment, and plants.  The tropical pavilion was my last stop.  Luckily, I found a vacant bench in front of a Monstera Plant and staked it out as my own for a few hours while I lost myself in the maze of leaves, trying to keep my attention on the puzzle shapes as I sketched.  After a graphite sketch I applied a loose wash of watercolors, and then added some pen and ink cross-hatching to define a few areas.  Time flys when you are focused on your work, and before long 2 hours had slipped by...

The humidity in the pavilion felt wonderful on my skin and the greenery made it 'feel' like spring!

Did you know that the color green is often used in decorating for its calming effect because green is thought to relieve stress and help heal.  Supposedly those who work in a green work environment experience fewer stomachaches, which leads to the idea of the 'green room' where television guests relax and wait before their appearance on a talk show.
I even read that some students may improve their reading skills by laying a transparent sheet of green paper over reading material.  This tool is supposed to increase reading speed and comprehension.

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