About Me

Enfield, London, United Kingdom
I'm a botanical artist living in Enfield. graduated in April 2012 with credit from The Society Of Botanical Artists. All images and artwork copyright © Julie Whelan 2016 Exhibitions: Dugdale Centre Enfield Town – August 2012. Capel Manor Enfield – September 2012. Society Of Botanical Artists -highly commended for the Joyce cuming presentation award – April 2013. Botanical Art in Bloom, Phoenix Park, Dublin Ireland – May/June 2013. Botanical Art Expo, Claregalway Castle Ireland July/September 2013. April 2014: Society of Botanical Artists. June-November 2014: Royal Brompton and Harefield hospital Arts-Harefield hospital. November-January 2014:Royal Brompton and Harefield Arts-Royal Brompton Hospital. December 2014-February 2015:Staff and patient exhibition at the Royal Brompton Hospital- Proffessor David Rayson-Head awarded 3rd prize February 2015- Awarded associate membership at The Society of Botanical Artists. April 2015-Society of Botanical Artists Annual Exhibition. July 2015-work accepted by the RHS February 2016-Society of Botanical Artists awarded full membership April 2016- Society of Botanical Artists-Awarded Margaret Granger Memorial Silver Bowl

Friday, 25 November 2011

Pineapple planning for final diploma pieces!

Well I really can't believe i have completed 12 assignments and now i'm busy preparing for my diploma pieces!!! We have been asked to complete 3 pieces; flower study with dissection, mixed flower study and a fruit or vegetable study. I thought I would do the fruit one first :) It's winter and we don't have many flowers in bloom and a fruit study; is a nice welcome after my mixed flower study for assignment 12!

First of all i needed to choose my subject :) I wanted to do something different and i thought of doing a pomegranate! Love the pink colour and I thought it would be nice to do a dissection and show the juicy seeds! Then I thought of the obvious ones; banana, apples, oranges and got very bored with this idea; a) nothing different about them and b) i fancied a bit of a challenge!

So i sent my hubby off to the supermarket for some pomegranates and he came back with a pineapple!! Not alot of difference, right?!? My first reaction was; how on earth do i draw a pineapple? His reply was; it isn't that difficult!!! My reply was; here's the pencil; give it a go if you think it's that easy!

Anyway after looking and studying the pineapple my thoughts and head were buzzing! So a pineapple it was :) pineapples they have such an interesting social and cultural history and are symbolic of welcome, friendship and hospitality - that's why the Victorians had them on gateposts. People like to have them in their hallways. I always try to find out the background information on my subject it makes it so much more interesting!

So now I had to work out an easy way of drawing Pinocchio the pineapple (Thank you Jess for the name suggestion!) You have to get the maths right with a pineapple and it's important not to get lost with all the deatail in the early stages!

After many hours of painting I think I have finished Pinocchio the pineapple :) I found this rather a challenge...Getting the bracts to not look flat was very hard indeed!! So many hours of shading later and i'm still not sure if I have achieved the look i was looking for! Once again trying to get the true colours in this picture was hard and turning the background white has made the leaves greener than in my original painting! So now on to my next piece of work :)

My first attempt at my pineapple!

My second attempt and I was much happier with this one!

So i started with a very simple layout on tracing paper. I measured my fruit first and drew a box for my guidelines. I then drew the outline of my pineaple; when i sudied the pineapple closely i noticed that the fruit and crown were in a spiral foramation; see my below picture :)

I then transfered my simple layout onto my watercolour paper! After doing this i added all the details to the fruit and drew in all the leaves. Once i was happy with this i erased all the guidelines! See my below picture....Now how on earth do i paint it? I now need to do a study page in my sketchbook and do some colour matching and then i shall practice painting some of the detail on the fruit! Wish me luck!


Jessica Rosemary Shepherd said...

This is so interesting to read. Nice to see the process. I never knew that's why Victorians put pineapples on gates!

Julie Whelan said...

Also On the second voyage to the New World in 1493, Columbus and his crew encountered a fruit which they had never seen before. One of them described it as being 'in the shape of a pine cone, twice as big, which fruit is excellent and it can be cut with a knife, like a turnip and it seems to be wholesome'. Its resemblence to a pine cone gave rise to the fruit's English name of pineapple, while its Latin name Ananas came from the word 'nana' which was the local people's name for the plant. People in the Caribbean area at that time valued the fruit highly, placing it outside their homes to welcome visitors. Later, Europeans adopted this habit with the pineapple motif used on gateposts and in carvings :) So very interesting :)

Jessica Rosemary Shepherd said...


nice interesting composition....

Julie Whelan said...

Oh wow this is interesting for sure:)However i don't know if this would be an idea for my diploma piece and i don't think i have room for 3 pinapples on my page!?Hey you were very busy yesterday:) I looked at your blog; on my phone though and i can't comment from my phone :( I would love to go to all the galleries...It's finding the energy and someone who understands that i have to stop and rest from time to time! One day maybe...You would be a good companion and we can skip all the queses!!! Hehe!Going over to your blog now :) x

Sketchbook Squirrel said...

Really enjoyed this one Julie, perhaps I will give pineapples as presents, do you think I will I get away with it? What an interesting history the fruit has. Just been on Jessica's blog and will take in a few of her recommendations on my next visit home, perhaps we can borrow her to act as guide.

Julie Whelan said...

Sketchbook squirrel it would be greatif we could give everyone a pineapple for Christmas!!!On speacial offer at the co-op at the moment!!!

Anonymous said...

Love your study page, Julie. Have you seen Coral Guest's pineapple? Her website is amazing and worth a look.

Good luck with Pinnochio! XxShevaun

Samantha Anne Hutchinson said...

Lovely Julie!

Julie Whelan said...

Thank you Shevaun and Sam :) x