Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Jack In the Pulpit

                    Jack in the Pulpit  Watercolor  5X7

I just looked in Newcomb's Wildflower Guide. Going by the brief description, the photo I used to paint from was probably one of a Northern Jack in the Pulpit. (Arisaema stewardsonii). The tube or spathe of this species is definitely deeply furrowed on the outside forming conspicuous white ridges. I tend not to remember details like this. I just like to spot the Jacks (and Jills). It's hard to find the first one but once I have found the first one, I usually find more. Being green they are hidden to the casual eye among the other green plants around them. I do remember that a particular plant varies from year to year, depending on the conditions of the spot where it grows. Some years the plant is a male, sometimes a female, and sometimes neither. In our area, we see Jack in the Pulpit in May.

I almost always paint literally so it is obvious what I am using as a model. This painting is the second painting of Jack (or Jill) that I have painted. The first one had a deep red background and all the focus was on the plant.

Now, Georgia O"Keefe... She painted six versions of Jack in the Pulpit in 1930. This is her second version.

Her painting is in oil, 40 inches by 30 inches. I love seeing her paintings in art museums. Most of them are big, vibrant and full of flowing color.


  1. This is so nice, Pauline....it has a glow about it as you kept the greens so clean....& there are so many!!!!! Unbelievable just how many shades of green there are until one takes the time to really look. You must have a really sharp eye as well to be able to spot these interesting plants.

  2. Your painting is right on ..it looks exactly like mine..it blooms in late May. You are correct, they are easy to miss..:)

  3. This is why I love walking with you--because you have the eye of an artist.