The Other Dandelion

Dear Liza,

Yesterday I told you that I had made two sketches of a dandelion, and only used one. Here is what I did (and learned) with the other one.

I put in watercolor green for the distant lawn, but it looked flat and not ‘distant’. And the fence wasn’t right.

But I fiddled with it. I think this ‘fiddling’ is what they call The Artistic Process. Auntie Bridgett showed me how to shade the grass so it would recede, and I played with the fence to make the boards look more like boards.

By the time I was mostly happy with it, Grandpa Nelson was ready to go for a walk. We enjoyed the cool fall sunshine, changing leaves, and tiny weeds growing from our latest rains.

And then I saw it. My mistake.

I had drawn a dandelion and put on the wrong leaf! Dandelions are so-called because someone thought their leaves looked like the tooth of a lion (dent du Leon). And I had put in a leaf that was more of a langue du chat. Could I fix it?

I could try. I picked a leaf and took it home to trace. I cut and colored and placed them as best I could over the wrong leaves. And it is better.


My mother always said that since we got smarter when we made mistakes, she must be the smartest woman on the planet. Today, I learned about leaves, paying attention to details, my own capacity for patience, and the myriad ways to correct errors.

So, educationally speaking, it was a good day.

Love,

Grandma Judy

Author: Judy

I am a new transplant to Portland from Salinas, a small city in Central California. This is a blog about my new city.

4 thoughts on “The Other Dandelion”

  1. Oh my, “Dandelions.” Brings back memories of the first signs of Spring. Beside the front porch they would have appeared overnight. I would pick them one at a time and make necklaces with the stems. Can’t clearly explain how I was able to do so. One end of the stem could be placed within the other end. Well, that’s my memory for the day. Thank you.

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    1. Dear Peevee, Thanks so much for sharing! I made daisy chains from dandelions, too, at my brother’s base housing at Fort Ord, when I was 12. I am glad you are enjoying the blog. Writing it, making some art everyday, and my wonderful people keep me sane. Take care, wonderful woman!

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  2. You amaze me everyday! You knew there was something wrong and you figured it out. I have to tell you I don’t always research what kind of leaves the long-on each flower. There is one Thin type of pointy Leaf I’m good at drawing and I put it on every flower but that is why God did not put me in charge of creating flowers. LOL once in a while I look at the leaves but most of the time my pumpkin leaves are completely wrong. You did a great job and the distance thing will come in time just remember darker brings it forward and lighter makes it receed.
    Xo

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    1. The dandelion thing just floored me. I cannot count how many millions of those I have pulled, and yet it didn’t connect while I was painting it. Brains… funny things…

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