I've been incubating this particular post for a very long time. More recently the inspiration for it has come as the result of receiving an email from Shelly. In it she included images of six, different, little flower paintings that her mother gave to her. She wrote: "I have always loved these pieces, they have been hanging in my parent's house since they were purchased".
|Varnishing a number of finished flower paintings, March 1975|
The memory of how I actually conceived the notion and then embarked on this collection is lost in time. It may well have been the result of finding cute 4" x 5" frames at the Calgary Hudson's Bay Company store in 1973 and figuring out what to put in them. With a roller I applied a blend (dark to light) using raw umber and white oil paint for the background, on 5" x 4" Masonite panels. Once dry, the flowers were painted on in oil.
I first sold these floral paintings at Norrell's Art Gallery, in Calgary, and at the Tamarack Gallery , in Banff. Later the Moriane Lake Lodge gift shop became a hot market but Rundle Photo Shop, in Banff, was undoubtedly my best outlet. And the bonus there was Chuck Hester (shop manager) who became a tremendous supporter of my art and a life long friend. Back then you could purchase one of these paintings, framed, for $15. I tracked down the company who distributed the frames and was able to buy them directly and wholesale at $2. each. The commission was 1/3 which meant, for each one sold, I received $10. (less the cost of the frame of course). Sales were brisk as folks happily collected multiples.
|Wild Rose - one of the first paintings in the series SOLD|
It would take me about one hour to do one and I could paint several a day; my record was eight. Speaking of records, I am still annoyed with myself for throwing out (years ago) the sheets on which I kept track of them all. So, I can't say just how many different wild flowers I included in the collection, but I'll guess at about a dozen.
|Wood Lily - the only one I numbered and kept NFS|
|Saffron Lily 2011 oil 5" x 7" SOLD|