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Do you want to have the best morning?


I have to tell you about the loveliest morning that I had recently! Because then you can do the same thing and also have the loveliest morning and then we'll all be super happy and I think that's a great plan. Okay?


So basically, I was due to start a new series of paintings. Now, I'm not short on ideas of things to paint but not many of my ideas are overly feasible for me right now. I need to keep things smaller-scale and manageable. So what should I paint?! I need something that is free, readily available at all times and interesting enough to hold my (and my audience's) attention. Cue the walk in my backyard!

I am lucky enough to have quite a decent sized backyard that includes some bushland. We have gumtrees, native flowers, abundant birdlife and even a wallaby that comes and visits every so often. It was a chilly morning but the sun was shining through the mist in the trees and the bell birds were singing their songs for me. I was sure I would find some interesting little subjects to paint! I began my walk up the hill and was keeping an eye out for any sort of colour or even just a single, cool looking leaf (you's my thing). But I was finding nothing. With it being the start of winter there are no flowers or berries, all the leaves I was finding were brown...perhaps my hopes had been unrealistic.

And then I spotted a berry. How interesting! What kind of berry is it? Why is it fruiting now? Was it pretty enough to paint? No. But the pause it gave me was enough to make me notice some colour on the ground behind the plant it grew on. Some fungi! Cute little orange caps that, once I stopped to look properly, I realised were growing everywhere around me! But not just the orange capped mushrooms. I ultimately ended up finding around five different kinds of fungi. All of them different and a few were quite colourful and even bizarre! Did I want to paint fungi? Also no. But I found that the more I looked at the ground and my surroundings the more I found that I did want to draw or paint. All of these things were very 'ordinary' leaf-litter type subjects but the spirit of fascination and wonder in which I was finding them gave them a new value to me. A value that I as the artist can attempt to capture in how I paint it so that other people may see it in that light too.

This is why I do realistic, natural history/botanical art. So that what I get to stop and take the time to admire I can then share with others. So that when I do it, maybe someone else will be reminded to do it. To stop and look. For there is so much beauty around to be seen, felt and appreciated.

I know that everyone knows that going outside is good for you. It's good for your physical, mental and emotional health. It's also just an excellent place to get inspired and feel happy. So how about you head outside today? Just for five minutes. It will be worth it.

Lauren x

PS. I do not claim to be a good photographer but here are some snaps and a little video capturing my wonderful morning.

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Thank you for sharing! Your walk and pics inspired me to go and do the same ... and I would like to paint fun guys 🍄

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