I have been negligent about posting; but not because I have been idle. I have been busy in and out of the studio. Above is a study (8x6) I did a few weeks ago in my garden. Trying to do a quick study without too much attention to exactness. Very hard for me. I wanted to focus on the thing that gives me the biggest problem which is value, and to get motion/movement in the flowers.
I painted these Monarda before I painted the black-eyed susans. Painting red flowers is still a real challenge for me. Especially a cool red flower. Even though I saw pink in the highlighted petals, when I painted them in, it read weird to me. I do not think this is a successful piece, and in trying too hard to get it right, I think I overdid it. There is actually an older painting underneath it that I painted over but loosely used the original placement of flowers. I called them "floral portraits" at the time (2002). I have come a long way. It is not similar enough to call it a before and after.