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I highly recommend this flower if you find it at your local nursery.  At Lowe's last year I bought several while on sale.  There were looking a little scraggly so they marked them half off.  Well, once they perked up they bloomed until frost. And spread really lovely.  I found if I took one of the long stems and bent it over into the dirt... (mound dirt all over so at least part of the stem is covered and secure it which I did with a smaller rock) the stem will grow roots and you can later snip it off from the mother plant and move that smaller one to a different location or share with a friend.  They actually kept their leaves way into the winter but look terrible now.  I'm waiting for them to show their first little greenery for the spring season.

Hummingbirds love the tubular blossoms and the brilliant reddish purple color (I think there are a few different colors available).   The stems grow tall as foxgloves! 

Billy Showell painted this flower for one of her tutorials.  She makes it look so easy.  I highly recommend signing up for her biweekly new tutorials!  I look forward to checking out first thing in the morning before I even roll out of bed which flower she's picked to paint next.  She also paints other things as well.  Billy Showell's Penstemun tutorial

(Billy Showell's Penstemun)

 Again, this is another study I painted last year.  It's in my mixed media journal so you can see the page crinkles.  I don't think it's the best idea in the world to learn to paint watercolors using non-watercolor paper!  You're probably better off even if you use the cheapest watercolor paper available.  I just got started doing my journal as way to keep my color mixes for when I decided to paint a "real" painting on real watercolor paper (hotpress). 

{color mixes: Permanent Rose + Cadmium Red Deep + Quinacrodone Red and then add that mix to Quinacrodone Magenta, Used mix P.R + C.R.D +Q.R. and added Windsor Violet and then added more P.R. and then also added Alizarin Crimson, Opera Rose + Q.M., Lemon Yellow + Sap Green, S.G. + French Ultramarine Blue (D.S.)}


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Fuschias are one of my favorite flowers.  I have overwintered probably ~25 or more.  Now's the time of year I need to repot and trim them down.  The extra stems I'll put in water or an awesome fertilizer called Eleanoors.  I mean it is AWESOME!!!  Two tablespoons in a gallon of water -  you put the stems in a glass with the mixed Eleanoors and within a week sometimes (two days for coleous to root!) you'll have roots coming out.  I'll leave the starts in the glass for months, changing the water/fertilizer mix every so often. My garden friends and I HIGHLY recommend it.  Usually they even give a free pint (not sure of the size) with every gallon you buy. 

And back to painting stuff.... :)  I painted these a few months ago.  This fuschia is just beautiful, it's one of the bigger, more frilly bloomers.  I enjoyed painting it on the journal paper.  It'll be interesting how much better (hopefully) I'll be able to paint them here later on on hot press watercolor …


I'm taking Dianne Sutherland's new ROSE class!  I'm at the very beginning where she asks us to paint a rose with leaf.  I really enjoyed painting the rose,... took my time, did some drybrush work (which I'm still trying to get the hang of).... on the leaves, I just got off on the wrong colors and went downhill from there.  You can just feel when things aren't going right for unexplainable reasons!

Then the first assignment is to accurately measure and draw the front and back of at least four different rose petals.  Then transfer them to watercolor paper and paint them....easy, right? Nope, not for me.  At least not right now.  I can get the drawing down okay... but then painting them is somehow being very difficult to me.  How can painting one single little petal throw me into a tizzy?


Then the first assignment is to accurately measure and draw the front and back of at least four different rose petals.  Then transfer them to watercolor paper and paint them....ea…
As part of my studies for Dianne Sutherland's classes, we have to make a chart with our greens.  I've been dreading it for some reason as I thought it was going to be mundane.  But, I actually really enjoyed it!  I've used the charts many times and want to do more charts with different colors... I don't know why I still have problems with figuring out if colors are cooler or warmer..... Maybe that comes with practice or I think I need to focus and learn more about colors.....   Many blogs have helped me with this... I'll add my favorites as soo as I can find the exact posts.