Vitex trees, one of my favorites

Plein air Vitex tree

Plein air Vitex tree, 9″ x 12″ watercolor.  Unframed $65

I don’t know if you have vitex trees where you live, but I find them one of the more beautiful trees we have here.  It’s a tree from the Mediterranean the it grows well in our temperate hot climate. The leaves bud in May and the beautiful purple or white blooms come in June.  Stunning.  And the older the tree gets, the more gnarled its trunk’s character.  When they are small, they often look like shrubs but are multi trunked trees.

We went out plein air painting at Sunset Gardens landscaping store/restaurant  in May and I stumbled upon this little gully and tree along the back of the open area, and my painting spot would be in the shade (A big plus!)

plein air vitex photos (1)

Plein air set up looking at the young tree

plein air vitex photos (2)

On the easel on the day.

After all the bustle of the past several weeks of the show, getting my inventory ready for the gallery, and then gallery sitting, in addition to health issues of the folks and my daughters’ activities, I hadn’t had time to paint.  And, of course, I had a crisis of confidence that I couldn’t paint anymore.  and of course, I procrastinated!  does that sound familiar to anyone?

If you’re in that situation, I can suggest that you pick up in progress pieces and squint…see that you don’t have enough of a range of values, in my case, not enough darks to spike it up, and then work on those.  That’s what I did this for this week’s painting group, rather than the angst of starting something new, or just playing (which is fine in itself), I took several in process pieces and worked on finishing them.

What I did for this one was add darks in the shrubbery and branches keeping in mind where the sun is, and I added more colors in the sky to make the white/light spots of the flower bunches near the top of the tree. Then I reinforced the shadows under the tree.

I will post more finished pieces later this week.  What do you do when you have a crisis of confidence?  I’d love to get some more tips…



2 thoughts on “Vitex trees, one of my favorites

  1. i just have to say your work is breathtakingly beautiful! the second i saw this painting i felt like i was looking out the window of some villa in the Mediterranean no kidding! it just has that feeling about it. ahh i love an inspirational blog thats for sure! hope your folks are doing better as far as your crisis i think most of us have them but like you said best thing to do is to pick up a piece and go at finishing it. But my honest opinion is that you will always be able to paint! your work is fantastic i cant imagine that would be something you could just lose. 🙂


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