Orchid dance


This was a drawing I started a long time ago, but keep coming back to and tweaking a bit here and there. The inspiration was the tiny native orchids found in Western Australia – the flowers are only about 2 or 3 cm across, but intricate and unusual.

For this drawing I have taken the basic shapes and enlarged and exaggerated the forms, taking them into that other world of living things that cross the borders between plants and animals, becoming fleshy and heavy. Now they are like sea creatures, maybe a kind of starfish, or even related to the jellyfish that I have been drawing recently. To me they have a hungry, carnivorous look, but are merrily dancing along a shoreline.

They were originally drawn just in graphite, but then I rubbed most of that away and worked into them, first with pastel pencils, then coloured pencils, a mix of Lyras and Pablos. The paper is 420 mm x 297mm (A3), Arches hot press 300 gsm.

Author: anna warren portfolio

I draw, I paint, I am a printmaker. Always searching for the interesting detail in the world around me.

29 thoughts

  1. What a delicate drawing. Straight away I think of Walt Disney’s “Fantasia” when I look at this. It is like the miniature paintings you do inspired by flowers and plants but feathery light…light as air. I like how you have once again crossed into fantasy.


    1. Oh thank you Julie! I really hadn’t thought of this one being light or delicate at all, it could be because I struggled with it, and only got it out again to freshen up yesterday. It’s so good to see my own work through other people’s eyes!


  2. These are delightful, great flower drawings and the way you made them dance and the cleaver use of the points of shadows to give them context. I also really love the background net/ pattern, it works really well. Karen


  3. How lovely .. full of joy Anna … I’m waiting for these little escapees to perform some cartwheels 🙂 Is that The Big Bad Orchid Catcher’s net chasing them … or is it some kind of blank manuscript veil … fun to imagine !


      1. Thank you for your welcome, Anna! ‘Tis much appreciated. My blog is Private as won’t be launching oh, for probably about two months yet…lots to do! I’m sure you’ll like this new look me. As for Nureyev, well, I was thinking more along the lines of his famous leaps, legs spread wide, arms in the air for balance, so refined! :O)


        1. Ah, now that makes perfect sense, you’re right, I can see Nureyev leaping! I did see him dance once, years ago … looking forward to the new blog, you might need to message me when it is up so I know what to look for!


          1. I’ve only seen Nureyev and Fonteyn in the movies, unfortunately. They were both wonderful. Re the site, it’s not just a blog. It’s called ‘An experiment’. I’ll let you know via a comment. :O)

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