Dragonflies and Summer

Dragonflies with wingspans of up to two feet! Let’s hope not, but according to the Smithsonian Magazine, dragonfly fossils have been found showing wingspans of over 2 feet. To read more fun facts about dragonflies, check out this article by Smithsonian Magazine https://www.smithsonianmag.com/science-nature/14-fun-facts-about-dragonflies-96882693/

Remembering dragonflies and summers on the farm with my brothers, I thought of the pond up on the ‘high wall’ (something to do with coal mining). We would hike up there on one of our little summer adventures. We would always see lots of dragonflies on the pond. Their shimmery, iridescent wings always seemed magical to my young mind. We weren’t supposed to play there, it wasn’t safe, the pond was deep, and the hills covered in scree, (rock fragments from the mining) which made for dangerous, slippery climbing. But we were young and feral kids back then and did what we wanted. No watches, no technology, we just watched the sun overhead and knew when it was time to head back home. We would walk into the kitchen repentant and hungry and Mom would ask, “Where you kids been?” Of course we gave the abbreviated answer, “back on the hill Mom.” This painting took me back to those fond childhood memories. Kids played outside all summer long, and siblings looked after each other.

Another art request came through to paint a dragonfly. I found two reference photos via Louise De Masi https://www.louisedemasi.com/home The links to the reference photos found on Pixabay provided below:

Sketching with a 4b pencil and then outlining with a Pigma Micron 02 black archival ink pen is how it all began. Pigma pens can be found in most art supply stores and online. I like these pens because I can paint right over them with never a smudge. A quick link to it on Amazon https://amzn.to/3cozjSd. They can be bought individually, or much cheaper for a package of 6 in various sizes https://amzn.to/3vZvquF

Creating the final touches to the painting required wetting the entire background and dropping in watercolors that were used throughout the painting. While the paint was wet, cling wrap was put over the painting and left to dry, creating the subtle background texture. Colors used: Windsor Lemon, Quinacridone Magenta, and Phthalo Blue. Painted on 9 x 12 inch Cold Pressed Arches watercolor pad.

The past year has sent us all outdoors more and more, getting us back to nature, let’s keep it going:

Go outside!

Enjoy

Helen

Prints available here: https://art-for-arts-sake.com/product/dragonfly-5-x-7-inch/

and

https://art-for-arts-sake.com/?post_type=product&p=2170&preview=true

2 Comments

Leave a Reply to coloradochelsea Cancel reply