Wild Flowers

When a friend of mine saw Helicopter [below], a painting inspired by a helicopter landing on Redstone Arsenal glimpsed through swaying poppies as I sped along the highway, she suggested that I paint flowers more often (thanks Emily!) After a trip to the Madison Farmer's Market, I found an excellent opportunity for exploring this suggestion.
As I spent my morning picking out produce and milling about under a searing sun, I noticed a flower vendor selling bunches of celosia argentea cristata, informally known as coxcombs, for $2 each. The last time (and the first time) I saw this type of flower, curiously enough, was during my internship at Frankfurt an der Oder's public library in 2005. Whenever I gave presentations to groups from the local schools, the teachers usually thanked me with profuse bouquets and baskets of flowers which often incorporated deep red, magenta, or golden coxcombs. Seeing them again brought to mind all of the kindness and appreciation, beautiful travels, and interesting discussions I had, and somehow simply having these unusual, vibrant flowers on my table again, almost too untamed for their crystal vase, gave me a new way to reflect upon and share a little bit of my experience.
Coxcombs [above] is a small painting, completed rather loosely and quickly. The flowers themselves are unusual enough that I made them only partially abstract. It is a simple painting of a cheerful subject and a cheerful time.

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