Thursday, September 1, 2011

Loosestrife Landscape

Purple loosestrife (Lythrum salicaria) is a beautiful but invasive plant which infests swamps and wet areas all over the USA. It is especially aggressive in New England where it crowds out native plants and environments in wetlands. It blooms in August and September, in general late summer. The trouble with it is, it's so beautiful that people don't want to destroy it, even if it is destroying wetlands and native ecosystems. 

A friend of mine loved the look of the purple blossoms infesting the wetlands, as well as my landscape art, and she commissioned me to do a painting featuring this scene. This is the result. The scene is the marshes of the Sudbury River.  It was done from a photograph and from memory, rather than on site, which was impossible given that the scene was visible only from a busy highway. Note my use of grey-purple clouds in the sky, and an evening pink sky tint matching the flowers. 

"Loosestrife Landscape" is watercolor and gouache on Fabriano paper, 19" x 13", August 1985.

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