Friday, April 24, 2015

Cummins Iris Garden, Scotts Valley. Thursday, April 23, 2015

Just another Thursday and just another garden for the Paintsites crew?    No way!  True it was Thursday (and a surprisingly cold one for April) but it wasn't just another garden -- this is a Great Garden!    And Irene and Jim Cummins the most welcoming and informative of hosts.  Several of us commented that it's a can't be anything but be a special day when talented and enthusiastic artists and equally talented and enthusiastic gardeners come together in a beautiful garden --- turns out Jim and Irene appreciated our paintings as much as we appreciated their beautiful iris.

Jim & Irene Cummins and some of  the iris varieties which Jim hybridized
 For an interesting article about the Cummins and their irises, see:

Upcoming  Paintsites and Watercolor Society events:
  • Thursday, April 30, 2015: Chateau CharMarron Peony Garden, San Jose (11:30 start time)
  • Thursday, May 7, 2015: San Jose Municipal Rose Garden, San Jose
  •  Thursday, May 14, 2015: Stanford Arizona (Cactus) Garden, Stanford
  •  Saturday, May 16, 2015: Stanford Arizona (Cactus) Garden, Stanford  (1st 2015 Weekend Paint Site)
  •  Thursday, May 21, 2015: Sunset Magazine Gardens, Menlo Park
  •  Thursday, May 28, 2015: Guadalupe Oak Grove Park, San Jose

A tour thru the Garden:
The iris didn't seem to mind the cold and, once we started painting, neither did we.   It was only when one stopped painting that one noticed the cold.   The obvious solution: keep painting!   Which we did.

Closest to the parking area is the 1840s stage stop and an old barn ....

Which John, "The Painter of Rust", couldn't resist.  (Don't let the shorts deceive you - it was cold.   John's one tough artist though, he'd wears shorts if it snowed)

John's painting of the old barn, rusty pump with a nod to the site - a few iris in the foreground

Dan working on some iris.   That's the old stage stop in the background.

Then we come to a potting shed which was hard to walk past without stopping for a quick sketch or painting ... 

Dick chose garden tools for his subject matter.

Dick's painting of a quartet of garden tools which spoke to him.

Leslie liked the tools too, some of which look like an Inquisitor would find them useful.

Anna, able to rejoin us after a too long absence, also choose the tools for her first painting in some months.  You can see she hasn't lost her touch..

Although the goal was to get into the iris beds, there were so many interesting and whimsical subjects that it was easy to be sidetracked ...

Carolyn standing in front of just a few of  Irene's & Jim's treasured "finds".

Carolyn's fun painting of lots more of the "finds".

Almost into the garden, Anna found some birdhouses that had to be painted first.

Finally, in the garden at last ...
Rows of iris, rows of artists.

More iris, more artists (photo by Liz).
Now that you've seen the outline of the garden, here are some artists and the iris they choose to portray ....... 

Anna and some color coordinated iris (photo by Mary)

Anna's iris painting.

Barbara working on her iris painting.


Elaine's painting of a multi-colored iris with frilly (or maybe that should be ruffled) petals

Helen's sketch,
And Helen's finished painting.

Not all of the lovely irises were in the fields - we brought our own:  Iris
Iris' painting of iris and a neighbor's house.

Iris' painting of an iris.
Jane K., Master Gardener and Master Artist, in her element.

Jane K.'s iris painting.

Jane S. and Leslie.

Or looking at it from a different viewpoint, Leslie and Jane S.   Either way you look at it, two fine plein air artists and painting companions.   (photo by Liz)
Jane S.'s painting.

Leslie's painting.


Liz's first painting -- "Kachina Dancer".

Liz's second painting - (from left) "Political Zoo", "Venita Fay", and "For Lovers Only".

Marilyn's painting.

Mary P.

Mary P.'s iris with valley hillside in background.

Shirley - boldly working on a half-sheet.    Shirley brought three of her regular plein air painting friends for the day.  We hope they didn't blame us for bringing the cold weather to their normally sunny town.  At least it's convenient for them to make a return visit when it warms up.   (Jenny & Sylvia usually arrange for perfect weather for Thursday Paintsites but they couldn't make this event so we all suffered.   Come back soon.)

Shirley's friend Melita - also working large.

Melita's unfinished iris painting.

Jenny, another of Shirley's Santa Cruz plein air painting friends.

Barbara's friend Michele.  (She's not painting the plastic chair - only using it to support her paper.)

Barbara's friend Paula.

Susan found her perfect iris.

And then painted it -- Susan's perfect iris.


Painting done for the day, it was time for lunch and the critique...

Brad critiques Iris' painting.   From the look on peoples faces, he's just said something particularly perceptive or, more likely, stunningly inane.    (photo by Yan)

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