Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Botanic Garden Fun!

Sunday I went to the Chicago Botanic Gardens for their annual Antique & Garden Show. All I can say is WOW! What an amazing show it was. I went to the Flower & Garden Show at the Navy Pier 2 years ago and was so unimpressed by it that I have not been since. The show at the Botanic Gardens was perfect! It had everything I love-antiques, flowers, artwork and more. I took my camera along hoping to get some photos of plants that were blooming in the garden but it was a bit chilly and VERY windy. I did however get a few shots.
Here is a view of some aspens surrounding the parking lot. Obviously, I played around with them in photoshop to enhance the sky and highlight the white trunks of the trees.
I have finally realized that I've become obsessed with trees. I've always known I loved them, but there's something about trees in their bare nakedness that I have come to view as a work of art. They are magnificent specimens of sculpture and form. Anyway, I could go on and on about them--maybe another post later on the pure beauty of trees...
Speaking of trees...below is a shot looking back towards the main building of the Botanic Garden. Did I mention I love trees? Especially willows-weeping willows to be exact. I love their color at this time of year when they are just starting to bud. The color goes from pale gold to almost chartreuse to grassy green in a matter of a few weeks.

Next photo is of a plant called 'Dogtooth Wattle'.  It was just starting to bloom a wonderful golden color that looks almost chartreuse in this photo.
I took the photo with the sun beaming in the right upper corner.

After these photos I was so cold and wind blown, that I finally went indoors to the Antique & Garden Show. I was there FOREVER.... So many wonderful things to look at.  I came home with a few things.
One is a HUGE hand hewn wooden trencher. That grew once I got it in my car. The plan was to put it beneath my sofa table but it's too big. So it's standing in the corner of my kitchen. Actually the intention was that 'one day' I will have a big huge kitchen with a big huge rectangular table and it will sit right in the middle...one day! Until then it will guard the corner of my kitchen. I didn't buy any other antiques but did drool a lot! I came away with many business cards.  I did buy some jewelry though. I just can't walk past jewelry and not look. This jewelry blew me away!  Obviously since it was a garden show it was nature themed jewelry. And did I mention my obsession with trees? Well, this guy's jewelry was made with real leaves! Sometimes he makes impressions of items then casts them, but most of the time he uses the actual leaves and coats them in copper. Here's a link to his website. I fell in love with a champagne leaf. Actually it's a grape leaf from the Champagne region of France. He collects leaves from all over the world to use in his jewelry. I bought the champagne leaf and also a little pair of gingko leaves. They are pins which can be used as pins or on a necklace. I also bought a little dogwood blossom pin, that fits perfectly on a bracelet.
This is a photo I took inside the garden show. These hydrangeas were gorgeous.

After those purchases I decided I best stop shopping and take some more photos. Since the wind had picked up and it was started to get chillier I opted for the 'Cactus House'. It was wonderfully warm inside there. And along with my tree obsession, I am also obsessed with agaves and echeverias. Many great specimens.

The above 3 photos are the only ones not altered.  Photo below is a blooming plant in the 'Cactus House'. It was altered.

The next shot is of a rather large round prickly cactus with some other blooming succulents growing around it.

What a fun day at the Botanic Garden. I have been telling my husband we should join and go there on a regular basis since it's so close. It's a great place to walk and take some great photos.
So before I left, I joined the Chicago Botanic Gardens. I will definitely be going back when the weather warms up and there are more blooming plants!

One last photo to show. We actually had snow here yesterday! I really thought that was all behind us and then WHAM! All those strong winds on Sunday while I was at the garden show blew in some cold air along with that fluffy white stuff.
My poor daffodils were weighted down with the heavy wet snow. Fortunately it didn't last very long.
The snow was gone by late afternoon. My daffodils recovered by last night and now today they are being pounded back down again by the pouring rain.
Lots of photos, still no artwork to show....maybe later in the week.
Until then....
live your life creatively~

p.s. The first photo above was altered with Kim Klassen's serendipity texture & sweet treat.
Second photo textured with Kim's warm sun texture, plus Texas Chick's 'Luminous' action & Pioneer Woman's 'Edge Burn'action.  Third photo was layered with Kim's serendipity texture x 2 as were the hydrangeas. The blooming succulent and the prickly cactus were layered with serendipity as well. Remember, you can click on the photos to enlarge them for better viewing : )



Cathy Bueti said...

These are beautiful! I especially love the first one!! Great work with the textures!! :)

Cathy Spivey Mendola said...

Thanks so much! I'm really loving Kim's textures.

Kim Klassen said...

a fabulous mix of images... Cathy... wow! really FAB work...

thank you for linking up with Texture Tuesday....xxo, kim

paperbird said...

beautiful images Cathy. I especially love the prickly cactus. It actually looks like something that you would find in the depths of the dark sea!
poor sad daffodils- it looks like we are having the same weather!

Cathy Spivey Mendola said...

Thanks so much to you Kim!! You've taught me so much. And thank you paperbird. Your work is fabulous!

Lucy Minetree Wallace said...

Love all the photos, especially the ones of the trees as I too am a BIG tree fan...with weeping willows being my favorites too..I guess we really are a lot alike. I especially like your Gibran quote. Beautiful post!

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