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Purple flower, WIP

Purple flower. Work in Progress. Markers and colored pencils. Ulla Hennig, July 2012

This has become a normal workflow for me: Do a sketch with a pencil, then ink the drawing with one of my Staedtler pigment liners. Erase the pencil marks, and colour the drawing with markers.  The upper petals show the result of that step, and you see see, the painting looks rather flat.

So I began to work on the lower petals with one of my coloured pencils in the shade of blue. This painting / drawing is meant as a practice exercise – what happens when I add this and that colour with the pencil?  I also added a bit of cadmium red, and I am thinking about adding magenta. I am playing around and having fun. And I am learning!


Roses – Photo manipulation

Roses - a photo manipulation

Roses. Photo manipulation with a photo taken in September 2011

Actually I took a photo of two roses in a vase, looked at the photo and discovered that the photo was a failure. Somehow I didn’t have the courage to delete it from my hard drive. Then later I read a blogpost about photo manipulation in photoshop.

I wanted to try that but needed something to manipulate. I returned to the photo, selected one rose, copied it and inserted it into a new image file. It didn’t look too bad, so I returned to the photo, selected the second rose and repeated the steps.

And here is the result! Something new had developed out of the photo failure. And I was glad that I hadn’t removed this photo from my hard disk…



Lily. Photo by Ulla Hennig, taken in September 2011

I could not resist taking a photograph of the lovely liles I got for my birthday this year. They were beautiful to look at, but I knew that they would not last forever in the vase in my living room. Taking a photo of them somehow makes them live forever…

Pink flowers

pink flowers

Pink flowers on a day in August. Photo: Ulla Hennig

Pink in all shades is my favourite colour. I read on a website:

Put some pink in your life when you want:

  • calm feelings
  • to neutralize disorder
  • relaxation
  • acceptance, contentment

And then I knew once more: pink is my colour! Especially the one point “neutralize disorder” – it seems that I have to have more pink flowers in my flat…

Yellow Rose

Yellow Rose Blossom

Yellow Rose. Cropped out of a photo and put on green background. Photo: Ulla Hennig

I took the photo of this yellow rose in 2008, and now I wanted to find out how it looked like when I cropped it out and put it on a gradient background. There are no branches and leaves now which can distract the eye of the beholder–all  the focus is on the yellow blossom itself. I think it is like putting a piece of jewellery on a dark cloth.

Moments of Happiness

purple flowers

Purple blossoms. Photo: Ulla Hennig

I don’t know how it is with you, but happiness for me is no everlasting thing. I have work, I am in good health (knock on wood), I have some good friends, yes. But there are a lot of things to plan and organize, there are some people hard to bear with and up to now there was nothing that could be described as summer.

But there are those precious moments of happiness:

  • the walk through the park in the early morning when the air is fresh and the sky is still blue and without clouds;
  • the dark red roses on the way from the bus stop to the office;
  • the moment when a problem is solved which I was not sure about whether I could solve it or not;
  • listening to a wonderful piece of music on youtube while preparing a blog post for Squidoo music;
  • the smile on the face of a colleague.

It is so important to notice these moments of happiness, to keep them in your mind and to be thankful for them!



Hydrangea. Photo: Ulla Hennig

On my way to work I pass several big wooden flower boxes with hydrangeas. Every year I want to take photos of them, but never make it. This year I did it! (I must admit that I did it with creating Zazzle products in my mind.)

The German word for hydrangea is “Hortensie”, and they come in all shades of pink and purple, even blueish. Enjoy!

What is the name of this flower?

Unknown flower. Photo: Ulla Hennig

There are people who see a flower and say “Ah, that’s a ….!” And then they take a photo of it. For me, it is the other way round – I see  flowers, think they are worth taking a photo of and take the picture.

No problem with that if I use the photo only to show it to friends (or on my blog) – I call it “unknown flower”. But, as some of you may know, I am into Zazzle for quite some time now, and “postcard with unknown flower” would sound as if I just discovered an up to now unknown flower species.

Not that I did not look it up on some websites. It can be that I know the German name of it, but there was no way to have the English translation.

And now you, my dear reader, are wanted: Do you know the flower above, and how do you call it?

And by the way, that’s my 251st blog post! Isn’t that a reason to do a very moderate Happy dance?!

Playing around with Photoshop Elements

Photo and photoshop creation: Ulla Hennig

I wanted to find out what you can do with those wonderful photoshop filters. Here is one of the results.


Pansies. Photo: Ulla Hennig

It is the time of the pansies. People are buying them for their flower boxes, and they can now be seen on graves as well. For me they are a sign that we are in mid spring.

Pansies were first introduced and became popular in Europe in 1812. In Germany we call them “Stiefmütterchen”, which means “little stepmother”. Did you know that the name “pansy” comes from the French word “pensée” meaning “thought”? Wikipedia just told me so – and whenever I’ll see pansies now I will be reminded of faces in thought.