Chinese Garden

You may be aware that I have been looking back through my old paintings, studies and sketches and discovering new things within them.

This week I found a sketch of a pine tree I had drafted as part of a workshop some years ago. I cannot recall which workshop it was but suffice to say all I had from it was the bare trunk of a pine with some needles…

This seemed too good a challenge not to see what composition I could pull out of it.

There have been a few things in the back of my mind recently and as I slowly let them come to the fore I ended up with memories from the Chinese Garden at National Trust property, Biddulph Grange in Staffordshire.

Part of this, I know, is because it is a wonderful garden but also because we have no idea at time of writing when we will be able to return…

Chinese Garden (Memories of Biddulph) by Paul Maslowski 2020
Chinese Garden (Memories of NT Biddulph Grange Garden) by Paul Maslowski 2020

From the original outline pine I have added the following:

  1. The hole in the trunk along with lots more definition up and down the trunk – this was applied in layers
  2. More needles of varying shades
  3. Elongated roots so that more definition (and, therefore, interest) could be worked into the roots
  4. Layers of foliage fill in shades of grey in order to get the pine canopy
  5. A ground so that the pine is standing close to a lake
  6. A couple of rocks in the lake along with water weeds along the lake edge
  7. Bamboo as there are beautiful bamboo’s at Biddulph. Again, in varying shades of grey
  8. The Chinese Pavilion from Biddulph Grange garden along with another lake edge behind this
  9. Seven golden koi carp
  10. Calligraphy:
    1. The title: Chinese Garden
    2. The date: Two Thousand Twenty Year in Cantonese style
    3. Seal: Tranquillity
    4. Seal: Double Happiness
    5. My Signature followed by painted

I hope that this is useful to you and inspires you. Ideally, to paint, but also for those with an interest in all things Chinese to visit the beautiful garden of Biddulph Grange when we get chance to…


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