Thursday, March 10, 2011

It Won Third!

This winter I spent hours thinking through, researching and making this picture to be entered into the Philadelphia Flower Show. To my surprise and delight it won third place. The overall theme of the flower show was "Springtime in Paris". I entered the pressed-flower category of a Paris Cafe'. Audry Hepburn movies were helpful for research. Dent de Lion Cafe' was named after the yellow flowers we, in America, call dandelions. For those of you who don't know, I am reading the French novel by Victor Hugo, Les Misereables. Reading it has given me a great intrest in France. Although Victor Hugo's novel is set in 1830's France, I brought many of its characters to a more modern day scene, except for the family at the bottom, which is my family. Below shows who's who. Jean Valjean is the main character in Les Miserables. He adopts Cosette, who loves Marius. The black tabletops in this picture are made from black hollyhocks with corn husks underneath them to give them a more interesting texture.
Inspector Javert's world revolves around the law. He chases Jean Valean (who is a parole violator) throughout the book. Javert took two tries. The first Javert was too big.
Marius is not a waiter in the book but it seemed like a good thing for him to be in this picture. His clothes (in the picture, not in the book) are made out of banana peel and his apron is black hollyhock.
Theses revolutionaries are plotting a better world. They all end up dying on a barricade.
Black hollyhock is the material I used for all the little curleys on the chairs. OK, these two characters are actually extremely poor and would not have clothes like this. But I wanted to have lots bright colors in this picture hence, the fancy clothes. The Thenardiers are criminals. Their daughter Eponine is in love with Marius which is just too bad because he loves "someone else".
And this is my family. Everthing in this picture is natural. Philadelphia rules state no color enhancment.

Here is a list of the plant material in this picture: creeping raspberry, birch bark, aucuba, bloody dock, dandelion, thyme, butterfly bush, ferns, statice, cornflower, rose, lettace, black hollyhock, corn husk, gray poplar, money plant, variouse fall leaves, black-eyed-Susan, banana peel, onion membranes, cockscomb, Japaneses maple, corn silk and some sort of a dead iris type foliage.


Winning third was a great 16th birthday present. I also got to go to the Les Miserables musical with my grandma, my dad and my brother.


Amanda Kaylon Bogle said...

Such a detailed picture, with all those groupings of people, the plants beneath the windows, the things on the tables and all the other details! Two questions came to mind. What size is the piece, to allow for so much detail? and Are human forms and faces extremely difficult, moderately difficult, or about on the level of everything else? I can't imagine that they could be easier!

Lovely work, as usual!

Sevast Family said...

This is beautiful Sarah! Thank you for explaining everything about the picture, it gives us just a little glimpse of the time and attention that you put into this piece. I know your parents are so proud of you they could just about burst! What a blessing it is to know you- even from a distance.

Flowers said...

That is so great. Les Miserables has always been one of my favorite novels. Your picture is just perfect!Congratulations. I personally think it should have won first prize.

rlharmon said...

AWESOME! I am so excited to see that you placed. I met you in February, 2011, in Helen, Georgia. I haven't been able to get you or your artwork out of my mind. It's amazing to see the finished product. We actually go to see you delicately working on this picture. I absolutely love your work. Congratulations! May the Lord bless you as you honor him.

Sarah said...

Thank you all for your very nice and encouraging comments.

I don't remember exactly how big the picture is, and I haven't gotten it back from Philadelphia yet. It's probably around 6X10.

I guess I'd consider the people moderately difficult. I think they probably are more time consuming than difficult. These people were probably slightly more challenging for me beause they are specific people. I might have to do Enjolras' hair three times before I consider him an Enjolras.


Terica said...

Wow what an absolutely wonderful story for the picture. If the judges could have read that it would have been 1st place !! I love that You included your family too.