I couldn’t pass up this one! When I did these sketches the geraniums were not blooming because they were indoors and it was March. Now my geraniums are blooming all over the place, and these crimson ones in just the right place to make a nice setting with the “Mimi in the Geraniums” garden flag!
I love my flowers and ground covers and trees and and I’ll plant flowers in just about anything that stands still, but I’ve really never been the type for garden doodads, like fancy pinwheels and decorative wooden cutouts and chairs and…garden flags. But I’ve found I really enjoy these, and not just because they are my art, or they have cats on them. They move a little all the time, gently waving with the slightest breeze, and sometimes quite a lot when it’s windy. In winter I could hear them outside at night flapping in the wind, and on winter days, when I actually like the mix of gentle earth tones in snow and dried plants, they brightened the corners near my walk when the clouds had been around long enough. Now they are mixing nicely with the flowers and abundant greenery from all the rains we’ve had this year.
This garden flag is made from two daily sketches from March 2012 where I’d sketched Mimi on the windowsill at the top of the step with the leaves of the geranium draping down over the side of the pine wardrobe, both Mimi and the geraniums soaking up the sun.
I did these two sketches at the end of March 2012, and when I planned my garden flags I used these two back to back. See below!
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Mimi Among the Geraniums 1
(On the left) Mimi enjoys a sunbath on the windowsill on the landing, which gets full morning sun. It’s only 18″ wide and 8″ deep, not really big enough for too many cats at one time, so it’s a prized spot, warm and cozy, with a great view. And when the window is open the breeze is wonderful and brings in lots of sounds and scents for kitties to dream about.
Of course there is quite a bit of reflected light on Mimi’s black fur, which we know is not entirely black but quite brown. I had intended to sketch her in black for a contrast of her with the green leaves, but then I saw the colors and all was lost
I hope she does this again when I have the time to sketch her—I’d like to try it in other media, brush markers and watercolor pencils.
I did catch her in marker a few days later. Funny to see I had the window open on this day last year when today it was snowing!
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Mimi Among the Geraniums 2
(On the right) Well, the last time I sketched this in colored pencil I was hoping I’d have the chance to capture it in brush marker, so today I did.
The markers don’t blend as well as colored pencil, but Mimi enjoys her sunbath in a slightly more abstract way because it’s just her and the leaves. This morning was too cold to have the window open, but that made the little windowsill like a greenhouse, trapping the sun’s warmth in the corner with her.
I like both sketches. There are elements of both mix of tones in the colored pencil and in the brushy bright solids of the brush markers. Soon those geraniums will go outside for the summer and the chance will be gone, but we’ll see what else I can do before then.
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These “garden flags” are digitally printed on both sides of a heavyweight, durable indoor/outdoor woven printable fabric, and I finish by adding the rod pocket. (Bracket is not included.)
Each flag has a design on both sides, in this case it’s the two designs above, but mirrored, my impression of Mimi enjoying the sunlight and the geranium at the window upstairs.
Flags are 11” wide x 15” tall and fit the most common garden flag bracket available, sold in most hardware and home renovation stores with a garden area.
My garden flags are designed with images of my feline artwork, from the quick colorful sketches I create each day to my detailed fine art paintings. They are made locally to me and I can work closely with the printer and have smaller quantities made, and therefore offer more designs. I sew the pocket into the top, and as you can see from these photos I have tested them all in my own yard.
Yes, I’ve gone a little father with decorating my flower beds lately! This area is to the left of my front door (when standing on my porch, which you see in the background), and used to contain only the piece of driftwood and plants. On the other side it had only one really old half whiskey barrel from when I moved in here 25 years ago. When that old barrel slipped its rings and fell to pieces one spring, I decided to renew my flower beds in the front. I unfortunately see things on trash pick up day that I shouldn’t pick up—that doesn’t mean me—but I do, and chairs are one thing I can’t pass up. I’ve done some decorative painting on a few, actually used a few others in the house, and decided to take the hint from what I’d seen others do to add some height to their plantings in the yard.
These gardens are difficult being dry and under tree cover, the old maple and spruce on either side with very shallow roots. When I first moved in I dug out the scruffy hedges and stacked stones along the edges to hold the soil, then planted all my cottage garden flowers: daisies, phlox, lupines, poppies, echinacea, blazing star, lilies, tulips, daffodils, I hardly remember what else, and most of it didn’t make it through the first year for the dryness of the area. I had what had grown in the half barrel and some phlox and daisies on the other side, and of course, those daylilies (and I’ll add, since everything seems to be connected, that I saw these daylilies growing along the railroad tracks the day I chased Allegro after he’d gotten out of the house, and went back to dig them up…), which have multiplied all along the sidewalk, and the periwinkle, purple-leaf winter creeper and ivy when served a dense groundcovers.
The year I added the chairs, I placed baskets on them and planters around them with flowers growing from early spring with daffodils through autumn with chrysanthemums, but most of the flowers are my geraniums. Most of my geraniums are pink, the descendants of a few geraniums my neighbors threw out one autumn and a few more someone gave me which I began keeping over winter in my basement and in the house at least 20 years ago, reviving the original plants and taking cuttings for new plants each year. My mother kept geraniums this way but in the garage, and each year we had a row of brilliant crimson geraniums in the window box on the front porch, and later after they had added a roof, she had one or two hanging from the edge of the front porch roof. In summer 2011, the year my mother died, I bought a crimson geranium with big green zoned leaves, and think of her each time I look at it; that is the geranium in the photo. This year it’s big enough to take some cuttings from, so I’ll have more to grow in baskets and pots next year.
This garden also includes a few flowers you can’t see that bloom at other times. I have a few daffodils here for early spring though no other bulbs have survived, but I do have cranesbill geraniums and forget-me-nots. Later in spring blooms a pink-lilac columbine and tall phlox, which is not terribly tall here, and the green and white variegated leaves are “bishop’s weed” which bloom with tall white umbels like Queen Anne’s Lace along with autumn joy sedum,,which blooms pink in late summer. I also encourage other plants with little white flowers to bloom here for accent and they come and go as wildflowers do, like fleabane and feverfew.
I have a set of flags for my yard that are actually my first proofs and ones that were on display at others’ shops and were damaged. These are the ones I try out in different areas to see how they weather, and I also take them to shows and festivals, just pulling them out of the yard when I go.
Where to find this garden flag and other garden flags I make
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See more “Kitty Things”, feline-themed things I’ve made or with which I decorate my home, or which I’ve seen elsewhere.
- Petties 2014
Read more about the Petties in this post.
All images used on this site are copyrighted to Bernadette E. Kazmarski unless otherwise noted and may not be used without my written permission. Please ask if you are interested in using one in a print or internet publication. If you are interested in purchasing a print of this image or a product including this image, check my Etsy shop or Fine Art America profile to see if I have it available already. If you don’t find it there, visit Ordering Custom Artwork for more information on a custom greeting card, print or other item.
© 2014 | www.TheCreativeCat.net | Published by Bernadette E. Kazmarski
Weekly schedule of features:
Sunday: Essays, Pet Loss, Poetry, The Artist’s Life
Monday: Adoptable Cats, TNR & Shelters
Tuesday: Rescue Stories
Wednesday: Commissioned Portrait or Featured Artwork
Thursday: New Merchandise
Friday: Bok Review, Health and Welfare, Advocacy
Saturday: Your Backyard Wildlife Habitat, Living Green With Pets, Creating With Cats
And sometimes, I just throw my hands in the air and have fun!