The Silky Blue Orchid represents the blue in my WA Rainbow series. It is a native of Western Australia and grows from Perth to Esperance. It’s labellum (lip) reminded me of the iconic Mick Jagger tongue, enhanced (?) with piercings!
Cyanicula sericea_1266 (Photo credit: eyeweed)
This orchid is a perennial that grows to about 40cm tall, flowers in our spring and has a single silky leaf – hence its name. It usually grows as scattered, individual plants and like many other wildflowers around here does well on gravel.
The ‘tongue’ forms a similar function as Mick Jagger’s – it attracts attention! In this case it attracts potential pollinators and the ‘piercings’ are actually dark blue ‘calli’ (small knobs) that act as a guidance system for them. My coloured pencil painting gives you a closer look.
Silky Blue Orchid by Helen Lock
You can see many species of orchids in Kings Park in Perth, Western Australia. Do visit Kings Park if you ever have the chance. It has an excellent botanical garden, many other attractions and fantastic views of the city and the Swan River.
English: View of South Perth from Kings Park (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
When I started this blog I committed to posting at least once a week. It’s been FOUR weeks since my last post! I know that the world has kept spinning and it’s likely that no-one noticed but it hasn’t stopped my angst from week to week.
My excuses have been many and varied but none alleviated my guilt at breaking a promise to myself, as much as to anyone out there ‘in the ether’. Seeking absolution I searched the net for comforting quotes, however those found just hammered the nail in deeper – except for this one by dear Mark Twain:
To make a pledge of any kind is to declare war against nature; for a pledge is a chain that is always clanking and reminding the wearer of it that he is not a free man.
– Following the Equator
Now I’m tempted to change the wording on my About page and renege on my commitment… but I think I’d still feel the clanking of that chain! So I’ll leave it as is for now – and I’ll leave you with an extract from an article by Patrica Watwood who did this beautiful oil painting in response to asking herself ‘why keep doing it?’:
Faith In The Wilderness by Patricia Watwood
This painting is called Faith in the Wilderness and in many ways it is an autobiographical allegory about my motives for painting. The graffiti says “We walk by faith, not by sight.” The model is the unattainable beauty of “perfect” painting. The landscape is the urban jungle that is the world that I inhabit every day. Faith is what I need to traverse the distance between the hope and the reality of being an oil painting artist. The wilderness is many faceted—uncertain prospects, an uncharted course, the complex art world, or even just the passage across that expanse of cheek between the nose and ear that always seem almost impossible to paint, no matter how many times I’ve done it. Patrica Watwood
You can read her full article here. It’s worth it!