You are currently viewing Texas Bluebonnets and Texas Paintbrushes  |  Richard G. Tiberius

21 1/4 x 22 in |  54 x 56 cm

From a distance Texas Bluebonnets and Texas Paintbrushes present stunning displays of blue and red-orange. But a closer look reveals their complex and beautiful forms. I painted this composition from a close perspective to celebrate these forms.

The Texas Bluebonnet (Lupinus texensis) is no daisy. At the top of the plant, where the flowers are first developing, they are white, tinged with a little yellow-green toward the base. Older flowers lower down the stem, become dark blue, brushed with a deep purple. The flower consists of two distinctly different types of petals. At the bottom, two petals are clasped together like hands in prayer, forming what looks like a little blue football. The upper petal is more like a lacrosse racket. It’s called a “banner petal” in the guidebooks because it’s open like a banner. It sports a white or pale yellow “eye” in the center. I discovered as I painted by first Bluebonnet that these white “eyes” changed color with age. The older eyes, lower in the stem, turn lavender and then deep violet.

Click for detail.

The Texas Paintbrush (Castilleja indivisa) is every bit as fascinating and challenging to paint as the Bluebonnets. The bright reddish and pink ovals that look like petals are really leaves (called leaf “bracts” by botanists). What makes them so challenging for a painter is that they are tipped with red, followed by a band of yellow and then fading into green like the rest of the leaves. Protruding out from among these orange leaves are tubular structures, mostly yellow with red or pink tips. But these are really not flowers either. They are what botanists call the sepals, like the little green flaps at the base of a rose. So where are the real flowers? The real flowers are inside this funnel, barely sticking out. I really enjoy painting flowers like this but, as I said, they’re no daisies. After working on this painting for a while my palette looked someone had been painting Old Glory—red, white and blue paint.

The leaves of Bluebonnets are lined with a pale green. To make thin edges with a knife is difficult, so I used a trick. I laid down a pale green leaf followed by a darker green right on top of the first one. Since the second application was smaller the pale edges squeezed out on the sides. This little patch of flowers lives in Ennis, Texas, where my wife and daughter and I stayed at a beautiful B&B specifically to see the Texas Bluebonnets.


This Post Has 8 Comments

  1. Margaret HILL

    Could you please tell me if this painting is for sale and how much. I am currently living in Portugal

    Thank you

    1. RichardTiberius

      We have responded via email. Thank you for your interest!

  2. Catherine Bressel

    I am also interested in this piece, as well as others. Can you please tell me if it is still for sale and the price? Thank you.

    1. RichardTiberius

      Yes, the “Texas Bluebonnets and Texas Paintbrushes” is still for sale. We will send you a price list of all of our available paintings.
      Thank you for your interest.

  3. Chyna Leigh-Ann

    Could I get price list for your art? Also do they come framed?

    1. KiryTiberius

      Thank you for your interest! Yes, we will send you a price list of our available work via email as soon as possible.

      Our paintings do not come with a decorative frame, although I’m sure that could be arranged for an additional cost. However, it may be useful for you to know that our paintings can be displayed without a decorative frame because of the way we make our hardboard backings. All our paintings are on hardboard panel with a wood backing for stability. From the side, you can see the edge of that backing, which is not visible from the front view. It is not necessary to frame our paintings with a decorative frame because we stain the wood sides of the panel with a colour that is complementary to the painting itself. Some people prefer the look of it without an exterior frame. However, you can certainly frame them with a decorative frame if you wish.

    1. RichardTiberius

      Hi Greg,
      Thank you for your interest. We have responded via email to your inquiry.
      Kiry and Richard

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