STORY BEHIND THE ART OF Carol Woodin

 
20th Annual International American Society of Botanical Artists & The Horticultural Society of New York
 
 

Slipper Orchid

Paphiopedilum cv.
 
I’m always on the lookout for interesting orchids. In preparation for teaching a class in Iowa a few years ago, Sarah Taliaferro took me to the Orchid CAVE to find orchids for the class! This is a place near Kansas City where underground caves have been excavated and are used for various businesses and storage. In this underground warren is Bird’s Botanicals, containing an amazing array of exotic orchids, all grown under lights. The location is about as far away from what one would anticipate might yield interesting orchids as any that can be imagined.  However, we were at a loss on how to pick just a few for the class. David Bird offered up many of his finest plants for our use, and among them was this Paphiopedilum.
 
 
As the class advanced, I became more and more interested in this orchid. Its pale coloration was quite different from many richly colored slipper orchids, just white, green, yellow and a hint of magenta. Four perfect flowers on a single inflorescence leaned over from the weight of the flowers. No one in the class had chosen this plant to work on. After hours, I made pencil and a color study of the flower spike and a few leaves. 
 
 
When it came time to paint it, I decided to just show the spike and flowers, in its horizontal march across the page. Ellen Sigunik stretched this vellum panel for me. It is difficult to paint pale flowers and still make them stand up on a page. There are more layers on this painting than one might think, even though the flowers are pale. 
 
 
 
Read more about this artist’s work: 19th Annual International
  • © 2017 Carol Woodin
    Slipper Orchid
    Paphiopedilum cv.
    Watercolor on vellum over panel
    13" x 19"