Sunday, 6 September 2009

Playing Around

Just playing around tonight with drawings of a medicinal plant and a composite still life.

The first drawing is called "Hypericum". You probably don't know this plant by its proper name, but I am sure you will recognize it when I tell you more.

You will recognize it as St. John's wort, a medium-sized bush with bright, yellow flowers. The plant grows one to four feet tall and wide, with many clustered, upright branches with dark green, shiny, somewhat pointed leaves. Flowers appear in summer and can be an inch wide. The fruits are greenish-red and have become popular in flower arrangements.

A quick search on the Internet told me that St. John's wort has a long history of herbal use as an extremely valuable remedy for nervous problems. In clinical trials, about 67% of patients with mild to moderate depression improved when taking pills or teas made from the plant. The flowers and the leaves are analgesic, antiseptic, antispasmodic, etc. The herb is used in treating a wide range of disorders, including pulmonary complaints, bladder problems, diarrhoea and especially nervous depression. Yellow, gold and brown dyes are obtained from the flowers and leaves. Oh, one more thing I should mention -- don't pick the flowers with wearing gloves and maybe a face mask. Why? Because they smell really bad!

This next drawing is rather different from what I usually show you.

I am calling the drawing "Still Life with Poppies". What makes this drawing fall under the heading of "playing around" is that while the chair, hat, some of the yellow flowers and all the poppies are my work, the grass and the remainder of the yellow flowers are a photograph. It makes an interesting picture, I think, and uses some Photo Shop techniques, but once again we are confronted with the question of "is it art?"

Hope you are having a good Labour Day weekend.

1 comment:

Deb said...

Sallie, everything you do is so interesting! And it is definitely art. It's just a combination of media.