Original art by Helen Evans acrylic on deep canvas 50x40x4cm. Can be hung as is or is supplied in natural pine float/tray frame
This painting is part of my Shelter series. I love hydrangeas. My parents didn't grow them. My Mum had some prejudices against certain plants and hydrangeas were in the "we don't have them in our garden" group. I was so surprised and thrilled that I could grow them in Queensland. They are on the south ( cooler ) side of our home and do well if I keep them watered. I have a rule that once you are in the ground you are on your own. It's a survive-or-die dictatorship in my garden. However, I make an exception for hydrangeas, must be tough for them in the Queensland sun.
This painting is the first I have painted on canvas in around a decade. I have maintained over that time that I prefer to paint on ply. However, this canvas was supplied with its own frame. Framing can be so cost-prohibitive for an artist so I thought I would at least try it. There are 6 coats of gesso on the surface and I happily loved painting it.
"Shelter" is a series of paintings exploring my garden. Our garden has been a labour of love for over a decade. We moved our house onto a rugged cow paddock in Cedar Creek northwest of Brisbane in 2010. I had wanted a large garden for years and finally had almost 10 acres to work with. At first, our house felt perched on the land, it felt separate, and it was stuck in the middle of a hilly lot with a rough driveway as access. We started by mulching around the house and planting and planting. Over the years we slowly pushed back the garden boundaries, beating back the long grass and weeds. I mourned the plants which were lost to sun, rain, clay soil and bush turkeys, and celebrated those that flourished. Our shrubs and trees grew exponentially with the La Nina rains of the past two years and now cocoon our house in cool abundant green.
During the late summer of 2022, I drew my garden from life every day for 100 days. These drawings have provided an invaluable resource for my painting. I produced the series "Round and Round" and now a second series in " Shelter'.
The garden provides shelter for our home. Keeping it shaded and hidden from the road. It provides shelter for birds and wildlife.
While I was making the 100 drawings I more often than not had to shelter on the verandas to make drawings as it was a very wet summer. I had to find new compositions every day as I sheltered from yet another heavy downpour.