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Spring Flowers Still Life

I know, I know. *TECHNICALLY* it is still winter. At least here in the states. But there seems to be something that happens in our minds once the calendar switches from February to March and suddenly everyone is talking about Spring. Easter do-dads & knickknacks appear in every store and, regardless of the temperatures outside, the focus is that spring is coming.

And with spring coming, that changes the vibe. Even outdoors in the morning I see more birds chasing each other around. And I am seeing the flowers returning to my butterfly garden in the front yard. I have even caught a butterfly here and there, though we have gotten another cold snap here in Florida after a pretty crazy week with unseasonably warm temperatures.

I LOVE flowers. I always have. My mom had them all around our house when we lived up north. She had lots of spring flowers too - daffodils and tulips and crocuses - that would signal in that winter was officially over and spring was really here. I do love winter, but seeing those bursts of color pop up out of the ground always got me so excited for the next season change.

Flowers are so cool. They just hang out there on the plant and look pretty, smell pretty, giving a little, "Hey, look at me and check out how pretty I am!" to the bees and butterflies and maybe some hummingbirds. You don't see them stressing out about how long it will take them to bloom or whether they look as pretty as the other flowers on the plant or in the garden. Nope. They just bloom and sit there and look pretty. And hopefully make a seed or two (or more) and add some joy into the life of those around them.

Yes, I love flowers. But I also love painting flowers. And drawing flowers. And coloring flowers with pencils and crayons...and really any other medium I can get my hands on. I find it so relaxing to study them and create art from flowers. I enjoy studying their colors and textures, the curves of the petals and the way the leaf falls away from the stem. And so far I have never had a flower complain about how I draw it, too. So that is an extra little bonus.

I decided to make a spring flower still life this go around for a few reasons: First would be to celebrate the coming of spring. Second would be to find a fun way to relax with such an enjoyable subject. And third would be an excellent excuse to talk about Still Lifes and their importance in art.

When you walk through any art museum, there are a few common subject themes: paintings telling a story (like those of Greek, Roman, or Biblical times), portraits, landscapes, and still lifes. A still life is a great way for an artist to study a subject without having to worry about the elements of being outdoors. The artist also has complete control over the lighting and position of the subject. It can also give you a quick glimpse of the artist's world or the time period the painting was made.

In this painting, I would suggest you create a still life of your own and see if you can add some flowers into it. Or find a picture of a spring flower still life online. Or, as many kiddos are able to do, make one up from memory or your imagination. The biggest key here is to jump in and do it. Whatever medium you choose, whatever style you choose. Have fun. Relax and get creative.

I give two examples of possible projects for any age or skill level. The first is targeted more for a younger audience, though I cannot express how much I would suggest letting the olders try it out - creating an art still life using plasticware! It was challenging and so much fun. Trying new mediums or ways to create always gets my creative juices flowing. The second is a more traditional still life using a picture I found on of tulips using watercolors. I hope it helps you create a fun time arting with your kiddos...or even by yourself.

And, as always, please let me know if you have any questions or if there is anything I can do to help you make your arting time a success. Also, if you would like a real time, step-by-step video to create a fun spring flower still life pic, let me know. I can certainly set that up, too.

Have fun everyone, and Happy Arting!

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