Potinara Hwa Yuan Gold
Potinara Hwa Yuan Gold

Though most often I paint orchid species, it is fun to paint a hybrid with its larger and more showy blooms. The beautiful plant raised by a Dallas orchid society (GNTOS) member and student judge provided the perfect opportunity.
 

Not surprisingly, Karl Varian has grown a plant with internationally recognized pedigree, a hybrid listed as the Grand Champion Orchid in the Taiwan World Orchid Conference in 1999.
 

Hybrids can be crosses of species within a genus but orchid growers throughout the decades have crossed genera so complicated that they are given their own genus name.   This Potinara cross is comprised of plants from the Brassavola, Cattleya, Laelia, and Sophronitus groups producing a beauty not found in nature.
 

I could not resist this as the first plant to portray in 2018.
 

Miltoniopsis Hajime Ono

Miltoniopsis Hajime Ono

Miltonias are normally found in cooler climes than where I live (Dallas, TX). Up to now I haven’t added these orchid types to my greenhouse. But after receiving several requests for a painting of one of these “pansy” orchids, I considered buying one to paint, never expecting it to last in my collection.

It happened that at the 2017 Oklahoma City orchid show on Mother’s day, a very good grower of this type of orchid had a booth next to mine.

Brian Truong actually gave me this beautiful blooming plant when I asked him to recommend a good one to paint, and here is its portrait.

The serendipity is that the plant is re-blooming for me in my greenhouse.  I will bring it inside when the Texas summer kicks into high gear.

 

Cattleya intermedia var.alba

Cattleya intermedia var.alba

The very first time I drew an orchid in in my greenhouse was in 2002 when a beautiful white Cattleya hybrid was in its glory.  It was a pencil sketch before I made the transition to watercolor. 

I have been wanting to complete a watercolor of a white Cattleya for some time now and when this new orchid bloomed so well for me, I had my chance.

I like to depict orchid species as I would expect the orchid to grow naturally. I believe this presents a much more interesting composition than the usual upright “show” style of presentation on the sales table. 

When deciding on my composition I try to envision how the species must have appeared when first collected in the forests of South America over 150 years ago.