|Indian Pipe (Monotropa uniflora) watercolor with colored pencil, 17" x 11.5".|
I've been preparing works for BASNCR's exhibition at Strathmore Hall in June. The show is titled "Off the Beaten Path" and the idea is to present botanical art that is not quite in the traditional mold. "Out of the box," so to speak.
The Monotropa family of plants are certainly off the beaten path--most grow in old forests rich in mycorrhyzal fungi and are usually no taller than 6 - 8 inches--they would be easy to miss unless one is looking for them. I'm fascinated by these saprophytic plants (meaning lacking in chlorophyll) with scales that are modified leaves and tiny pendulous flowers that unfurl to become upright after they have been fertilized. I hope to eventually find and illustrate other members of this family.
Last summer came across another relative, Yellow Pinsesap (Monotropa hypopitys), growing at Pandapas Pond in southwestern Virginia, and have been working on an illustration of it. The first stage of my artwork in colored pencil is shown below.
|Yellow Pinesap (Monotropa hypopytis), colored pencil, 12" x 10".|