This past week I picked elderberries from a tree heavy with them; it beckons every time we pass it on our walks. A large bag of stems looked as though they were ripe with promise of jelly, but that's not what I was after this year.
As much as I enjoy making and eating that delicious tart jelly, I was truly after these gorgeous stems.
Ranging in colour from green through red to dark purple, they make elegant filigree additions to mixed media paintings.
This mandala, created with painted papers and dried, pressed stems, is a favourite of mine. The delicate etching of them is reminiscent of fine lace.
|'Elderberry Mandala' Mixed Media on hand-painted paper-covered canvas © Win Dinn|
The elderberry stems used in this painting were instrumental in bringing about its sale in Puffin Design recently. The Alberta purchaser apparently has a particular affinity for them.
|'Changing Landscape' Mixed media on canvas © Win Dinn|
And of course, there is always the possibility of jelly in the offing!
Are there gifts from Mother Nature you enjoy using in your work? Or perhaps you use her design principles instead? I'd love to see your comments below.