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Botanical Art Worldwide: America's Flora

Ohio Buckeye, Spring Flushing

Aesculus glabra

Ohio Buckeye buds are as beautiful as any wildflower in early spring, and among my favorite sights in local creek bottoms. I enjoy drawing and painting flora native to my region and I’m also intrigued by the amount of material that is packed into buds, and how leaves and flowers appear as they first emerge.

The buckeye’s developing inflorescence is charmingly nestled in the whorl of flushing leaves, and I portrayed the flower bud in graphite to show the actual size of my subject. But I was most captivated by the palmately compound leaves’ dramatic unfurling and by the lovely multi-hued bud scales. To capture these in detail, I depicted a terminal bud much larger than life, using watercolor augmented with colored pencil and graphite. The leaf veins and serrated edges were particularly challenging, as it was easy to get lost amongst all the repetitive patterns. But I enjoyed the contrast between these intricacies and the sleek surface of the bud scales.


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Aesculus glabra

Ohio Buckeye, Spring Flushing

watercolor, colored pencil, graphite on paper

13 X 10

©2017 Gillian Harris

2024 ASBA - All rights reserved

All artwork copyrighted by the artist. Copying, saving, reposting, or republishing of artwork prohibited without express permission of the artist.

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