As a teen I flavored shortbread cookies with Rose Extract. I saw it in a store and couldn’t resist buying it.  I can’t imagine what inspired me to add it to the shortbread cookie dough.  The delicious taste of the cookies comes back in a flash when I rub the leaves of my rose geranium plant.

Rose Geranium - Artist Trading Card

Rose Geranium – Artist Trading Card

When I purchased the plant last spring I expected it to grow no more than 24″ high and be somewhat bushy like the ones in the fragrant herb garden at Lord Stirling Park.  Mine is now almost five fee high! The plant has never bloomed.  The fragrance comes from the leaves.

Color Scheme: Analogous with one complement – Yellow/Green, Green, Blue/Green and Rose (of course)

ACEO Sketchbook drawing: Rose Geranium –  illustration drawn first in ink with fountain pen, followed by watercolor.

I’ve discovered the pleasure of growing plants to brew tea from fresh leaves.  Rose Geranium tea is delicious!

Rose Scented Geraniums – Pelargonium Graveolens

Both of my Rose Scented Geraniums share a large, clay pot beside my back stoop.  I have an Old Fashioned Rose Scented Geranium and a Silver Edge Rose Scented Geranium.  They are both considered to be Pelargonium Graveolens.  The fragrance is delightful and the tea brewed from their leaves is refreshing and subtle.  A touch of raw honey from the bee hives across the street and I’m in heaven.

Never again will I moan over the multitude of greens in the summer.  As long as I stay either to the cool side headed toward gray as a neutralized green or the warm side headed toward brown as a neutralized green (depending on my color scheme) I can have the best of both warms and cools without conflict.  If I don’t become too distracted, I’ll paint a chart that illustrates my point.  In this painting I stayed on the side of grays rather than browns and was able to achieve both warm and cool variations in the leaves.  My palette was viridian, french ultramarine blue, phthalo blue, cadmium lemon and a touch of permanent crimson.  Note that they are all cool variations of their hues.  I did not use a warm green, a warm blue, a warm yellow or a warm red.

The greens I created are not realistic for a sunny day, but are quite close to the color of the geranium leaves on a bright but overcast day.  My choice was not based on reality anyway….. it was based on beautiful color and the joy of allowing pigment to mix on the paper, wet in wet creating gorgeous transitions from warm to coll and back again.

Color Scheme: Analogous

Drawn first with fountain pen followed by watercolor