White Flowers

Last Sunday I was at the OSA booth at “Art in The Pearl”, 
doing a demo on white flowers. 
There was a time when I avoided painting white flowers, especially with white backgrounds… 
it was difficult to give them interest and definition. 
But that was because I thought shadows should be gray.
Then I discovered a wonderful thing 
about white flowers… 
                     they can be any color you want to make them! As long as the values are true, 
the color is believable. In other words, white flowers are better
with colorful shadows and reflected color. 

Take these Sasanqua Camellias.
The color in the petals make them appear almost translucent!
Without the color, above, the shadows are just gray.
See how flat this looks compared to the first one?
Same thing with these lilies. White doesn’t have to be boring or drab. 
For the lily above, I used one of the lilies in the photo below. Can you find the one? 
It’s the flower in the center, cropped out (and rotated) below, right.

 I like it’s curves — the twisting shape 

the contour makes — and have used the same basic form 
in several paintings.

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