Image: The Painted Flower Challenge

I am so lucky  to be part of a group of artists on facebook from all over the world, some full time artists, and some who just do it as a hobby, who every month or so compete in a challenge.   There are no winners, no losers and only one rule, create ‘XYZ’ but it must be a personal ‘challenge.’  Get out of your comfort zone and create away but challenge yourself any way you want  I think most artists would agree rules dont work, they are they to be broken, and push the boundaries, so what a neat idea.  The artists that take part are a complete mixed bunch of people covering many disciplines including, silk, oil, fibre, mixed media, infact no rules means anyone doing just about anything in the art world!

Credit for creating this group goes to Don Baker ( Don not only comes up with some great ideas but is always around to provide help and encoragement to everyone who joins in…………And of course he extends the deadline when members (he) hasnt completed the challenge on time 😉  To contact or join the group please e mail, Don or myself.

We are now on the fourth challenge but felt it was time to show the world some of the fantastic creations so far.  The first was The Painted flower Challenge, below are the images of the flowers created by some members of the group, with a brief word about how they were challenged and contact details to see more of their work.

First of course the creator of the group, Don Baker


This is on 10 Momme Habotai with resistad and thickened dyes. The thickened dyes were used in the center of the flower for the dark spots, and also along the edges of the petals to intensify depth. The thing I found most challenging about this piece was trying to add depth to the center area. Value gradation is something I need to work on, as that is the key to dimension. Hoping I will be able to get a new piece done.  To see more of Don’s work or to contact him go to,

Carla Picciani


Contemplating the dark corner of my garden I was tempted to choose again hydrangeas to join this wonderful initiative of Baker (I love painting them on silk!)  But I decided on a new subject, so I started to draw strokes of color taking inspiration from Calla Lilies hidden amongst the large leaves……… To see more of Carla’s work or to contact her go to,

Kety Bagwalla


I did use Magic Sizing, sprayed all over on the pencilled drawing and gradually worked petal by petal to ensure there were no bleeds or jagged edges. After the flowers were done, started on the leaves, stems and buds (similar process with blending, shading more or less with brushes not too loaded). Once the flowers were dry, did the centres and lastly did the background, again taking care with almost dry brush just around the edges of the flowers and leaves and then with a bit more color once the edges were around were done and looked crisp.  To see more of Kety’s work or to contact her go to,

Kristina Klimentova


I present you Iris, one of my favorite spring flowers! To see more of Kristina’s work or to contact her go to,

Evelyn Antonysen


Painting on silk purely in a watercolour technique…. using just the iron fixed paints and water with the aid sometimes of a hairdrier. I particularly like this method for poppies as they look so delicate…light and airy. I called this work Free Spirits as that is what they seem to be to me.  To see more of Evelyn’s work or to contact her go to,

Judy Swircenski


Trying to work with whites and shades the biggest challenge ,as well as adding of water drops on leaves even tones of back round trying to give it a Suede appearance adding a cameo effect with the circle all little bit challenge but I really wanted this flower to tell its own story that is it only comes out at night that is why the dark back round I enjoyed the challenge. To see more of Judy’s work or to contact her go to, or e mail her

Kathy Murphy Childs


To see more of Kathy’s work or to contact her go to,

Tina Gleave


“Tender Thoughts”
Size: 11″x34″
Technique:**MS & Dried Red Label Dyes
Challenge: Never painted this color flower before. I dried all of my mixed dyes to a crusty mess and thought backwards for this painting. My personal challenge is also working on layering and adding depth to my paintings. To see more of Tina’s work or to contact her go to,

Lynn Meek


Steamed silk was centered over a gallery wrap canvas….with a mix of 50% matte medium and 50% water, I worked in quadrants with a large housepainting brush brushing the silk out from the center and working to remove all wrinkles and bubbles (you need about 5 hands for this job:) When the top was smooth, I worked each edge at a time pulling the silk around to the back and stapling…then finally folding the corners neatly.  To see more of Lynn’s work or to contact her go to,

Sande VanBuskirk LaFaut


There is a silk painting under all that quilting – really. My challenge for this was to paint 2 versions of the same flower and then blend them together with thread painting. I wanted to quilt the colored version with grey thread and the grey side with colored thread. I like the lower right where there is more quilting around the leaves and will continue doing that on both sides, it’s been an interesting experiment.

Caroline Spooner


Silk Charmeusse 35 x 25 , water, alcohol, silk dyes and a hairdryer and the challenge, I like bold colors and wanted to be free of any boundaries with resists.  To see more of my work or to contact me go to,

Mary Edna Fraser

Moonlit_Crysanthemums_colorcorrect_14in copy

To see more of Mary Edna’s work or to contact her go to,

Next post will be the second challenge, Landscape paintings.  If you are interested in joining this facebook challenge group please e mail, Don or myself.

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