“Allergic to Peonies”, oil on Gessobord panel, 12x9 inches
“Allergic to Peonies”, oil on Gessobord panel, 12×9 inches

I was excited when I found these peonies at Trader Joe’s and wanted to try to paint them. Maybe they’re not native to the Bay Area since I’d never seen them in person before, only in other artists’ paintings.

Preliminary sketches, block in of flowers then background, then vase
Preliminary sketches, block in of flowers then background, then vase

I got started and all was well at first while they were newly opened. I got them sketched out and blocked in the first afternoon of painting. By the end of the second afternoon when they were fully opened, their scent was killing me, making my throat and eyes itch and I started sneezing and coughing. I gave the bouquet to my neighbor.

Working on the flowers then the background and the vase to strengthen shapes and values
Working on the flowers then the background and the vase to strengthen shapes and values

The next day I finished the painting from a photo which isn’t nearly as much fun as painting from life. I also didn’t particularly enjoy working on Gessobord which is kind of dry and absorbent compared to the wonderful Yupo I’d been working on lately but I stopped using it because of some possible issues with mounting or framing Yupo.

Photo reference
Category:
Art, Art supplies, Flower Art, Oil Painting, Painting
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Join the conversation! 6 Comments

  1. Peonies are my very favorite flower. The only problem is that they are not native to California so we have to depend on stores to carry them for a short period of time. Beautiful portrait of them, Jana. You even picked my favorite color!
    Best regards,
    Jeannie

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    • Thanks Jeannie. You’re so lucky you can enjoy these beautiful flowers without suffering. I’m finding more and more that flowers aren’t my friend when indoors. I guess I’m going to have to paint all my bouquets outdoors from now on, which has its own challenges.

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  2. Well, you got the painting done,and the real flowers to friends and out of the house– good for you, Jana. Even if it wasn’t your favorite way to work, it DID work. Lovely flowers. Since you enjoy Yupo, I hope you find a way to solve the framing and can keep on using Yupo. annie

    On Tue, Jun 25, 2019 at 8:39 PM Jana Bouc, Artist wrote:

    > Jana Bouc posted: ” “Allergic to Peonies”, oil on Gessobord panel, 12×9 > inches I was excited when I found these peonies at Trader Joe’s and wanted > to try to paint them. Maybe they’re not native to the Bay Area since I’d > never seen them in person before, only in other art” >

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    • Thanks Annie. I’ve been experimenting with other surfaces to paint on that might simulate the slipperiness of Yupo but be easier to frame and may have found a solution. It’s not that everything I make is frame-worthy (far from it!) but when I do have a success it’s good to know it can be framed, in case I want to hang it or someone else does. My neighbor was having a dinner party that night so it was nice knowing the flowers were going to have a second life on their dining room table!

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  3. Like painting roses, so hard, but you did it

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  4. Thanks Ruth. I’m always curious when someone says painting X is hard, what they think the hard part about it is. I’m trying to learn that everything is just shapes of color and value and to see things that way. But it’s like peeling the layers of the onion off my eyes to do that because it’s so hard not to think “petal” or “nose” — that’s what makes it hard for me. It seems like first I have to really understand the thing I’m painting, how it is structure, how it “works” and then once I get that I can let go of it and just draw/paint the shapes. What makes it hard for you?

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