Paper Daisies (pastel) and a discussion on trees

The best thing about pastel – no drying time between layers! I can bang one out in two days as there is no time delay!


This is a picture of the paper daisies in the grass right at Wyperfeld national park.

The worst thing about pastel- the mess. Oh my goodness. i have made a little aluminium tray to catch the dust but it still gets everywhere. BTW WORDPRESS- IT’S SPELLED ALUMIN-I-UM with two I’s.  I’m Australian! None of this “Aluminum” nonsense here!!

I also need to work out how to store them properly.

The other thing that I’m trying to work out how to compensate for is that you have to have more colours on hand in order to select the right ones. You can mix a bit on the paper – but it’s not like paint.

Speaking of paint I had a giant blue blob of oil paint in my hair yesterday, which i tried to work off with a tissue and ended up merely smearing into my scalp.


The other thing I’ve done today is gone and taken tree photographs so I can practice drawing and painting them. I really need to draw them first. Lots of drawing of trees. This is going to be painful but painful things bring rewards.

I went up to Mount Dandenong today to borrow a cat trapping cage from someone (the cat saga continues) and I stopped to get some shots of the Eucalyptus up there. It’s tall cool temperate forest up there. There is a *bit* of cool temperate rainforest around. Depends where you are on the mountain, the side facing Melbs has much shorter trees and is more scrubby.




The other day I was reading someone’s statement: Don’t use black in paintings because there is no black in nature. No black my ass. Bushfires are part of the Australian ecosystem. No black in nature – check this charcoal out!



The burning clears out the undergrowth and the leaves (full of eucalyptus oils) and stops then big  fires (lit by firebugs usually) taking out the whole mountain. Forest here should be burned every 12-15 years or so. Native trees have buds for branches along their trunks. In a few months time these guys will be a sea of green young shoots all up the trunks.

I was at a state park in December that was burned out 5 years ago. you can see it in the tree bark, it’s black a number of metres up on the trees that don’t shed their bark (much harder to see on the stringybarks and they don’t keep the burned layer, they shed their bark). This whole area was black and smoking, it’s done a good job of regeneration.  You can see the main tree here is still black from the fires.


Bark closeup on an ironbark tree


A different part of the park, where the trees are smaller – clearly they lost most of the trunks in the fire, this is also regenerated. You can see how the buds came out and made branches all the way along this tree, also you can see where the old tree branches are dead but the new growth has come out the bottom. I love Australian ecology. I was so lucky to be able to do botany at uni here, I learned so much.


Back to today!

I wandered around locally to the local park behind my house and found some nice trees and took shots of them – also the paperbark outside my house (street tree).  Melbs is full of nice trees. You don’t have to go too far to get lots of different specimens. I was thinking maybe too I should ride along the bike paths too, there is a wetlands just up the road from me.

Ok I’m rambling. Here are pics of trees:

IMG_3715 IMG_3706

IMG_3728 IMG_3720 IMG_3709IMG_3731

That’s your trees for today!