Painting Begonias from Sharon’s garden on a rainy Autumn day .
As part of the botanic garden residency I am able to work in both the city botanic gardens and the Mt Coot-tha botanic gardens. A visit last week to the mangrove swamp situated at the edge of the city botanical gardens cradling the Brisbane river was fascinating and inspirational. Painting and drawing mangroves at low tide has kept me busy. I look forward to a high tide visit soon.
I have been spending time by the lake in the Australian Plant Section of the botanical gardens walking and writing and staring at the reflections on the water .
Monday mornings I go early to the botanical gardens to collect specimens to paint during the week. I carefully select, cut and take them back to my studio. They are placed in a row of glass bottles on my work table. Each day I select a single flower to focus on. I try to simply paint what I see .
pastel drawings of this week's specimens hanging in the studio.
Mount Coot-tha was home to the Turrbal Aboriginal people for tens of thousands of years before European settlement. After settlement the summit was cleared, leaving a single Eucalpyt tree. This gave rise to the name One Tree Hill, which remained in place until 1880, when the area became a public recreation reserve. The name Coot-tha comes from the Aboriginal word ku-ta meaning honey. This area was where the Aboriginal people collected honey from the native stingless bee. Coot-tha means ‘place of honey’.