Still Life with Felcos


TreepeonieswithprunersI think I’m in love.

People, meet Shannon Reynolds, gardener and painter extraordinaire.  She is the winner of Monday’s giveway on garden journals; she actually uses wiki software to keep track of her garden.  Oh, and she records her garden through oil paintings as well.

Shannon lives in Ontario, where she paints full-time and gardens in between.  She sells her small paintings for remarkably affordable prices through her blog–you can pick one up for around a hundred bucks–and you can see her larger work and commissions here

But oh lord, these little flower paintings just about make me faint from joy.  Shannon, where DID you get the idea to include those pruners in your still life?  It’s beautiful and authentic andBlackparrots
just perfect.

And those black tulips?   Oh, man.  I could wake up looking at those every day.  That’s the great thing about owning a piece of original art.  It becomes a part of your life.  You open your eyes in the morning, you lay in bed and look at it, and you make some decisions about the kind of day you’re going to have.

Here’s what Shannon had to say when I e-mailed her and asked her if I could share her paintings with you:

"I’m new to flower painting, but I’ve been reading about the vanitas paintings and dutch floral masterpieces of the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries and I think I may
try to develop my small paintings into contemporary floral vanitas paintings.  What better reminder of life’s ephemeral nature than a garden shifting through its seasons?

For now, I’m following the progress of the flowers in my garden, and approaching each painting as a tiny portrait.

I can partly credit my art school background for making me skeptical about painting for the sheer pleasure of representation, but these small paintings are helping me rediscover the joy of painting freed from weighty capital ‘A’ art concerns."

A number of painters are starting to use the Internet to allow them to sell their smaller works for an affordable price, without going through a gallery, which allows them to support themselves as artists and still have time to work on larger pieces for shows and commissions.  If you want to know more about this movement, check out Duane Keiser, the USA Today article, and the Daily Painters Guild.  Follow the links and you’re off.   There’s an extraordinary amount of good work out there, and painters like Shannon inspire me to fill my house with art.  Check it out. 


  1. Amy, thank you for the post.
    I can credit Edouard Manet with a much earlier inclusion of pruners in a peony painting, but after dismanting and sharpening my red Felco No.7 pruners, I thought they too deserved to be immortalized in paint.

  2. Shannon’s paintings are gorgeous! I’m off to her site to check them out further. Congrats to Shannon for her win, and thanks to Amy for having brought her to our attention. I admire people who can translate their vision into paintings or drawings–i can only do it in words, and sometimes not that well!

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