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Dec 14, 2019 10:33 AM CST
Name: David Tillyer
New York City (Zone 7b)
In the winter, the garden is cold and muddy and messy, so usually I stay inside and paint roses. My paintings (watercolor) are usually realistic rather than abstract and I'm an awkward and untutored amateur -- this is my second year. I'm getting better, but I still throw out my first three or four drafts.

My question for you is how many leaves is normal for roses. I see mostly three leaves (one large leaf in the center and two smaller ones on the side of the stem) or five leaves (two smaller ones on either side with a larger one at the end of the stem). I have seen more leaves on branches that don't have flowers on them and rugosa is a totally different category. Is there a pattern that I'm missing? I think of hybrids as usually having the three-leaf pattern. Do bushy roses have a pattern?

Leaves are a hell of a lot easier to paint than a mass of patterned petals.
Gardening is easier and more forgiving, but I do love painting in the winter.
David
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Dec 14, 2019 11:58 AM CST
Coastal Southern California (Zone 13a)
David -- The number of leaflets a rose carries on a compound leaf varies -- but most of the modern roses will have 5 leaflets to a leaf. Like this:
Thumb of 2019-12-14/jerijen/fc126f

This photo shows two leaves, but the top leaf best illustrates the five leaflets.

And I should add that many Old Roses have 7-leaflet leaves, and there are a sometimes leaves at the top of a stem with 3-leaflet leaves.
Last edited by jerijen Dec 14, 2019 12:59 PM Icon for preview
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Dec 14, 2019 1:23 PM CST
Name: David Tillyer
New York City (Zone 7b)
Leaflets, that's right. Several leaflets in a leaf. Thanks
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Dec 14, 2019 6:51 PM CST
Name: SoCal
Orange County (Zone 10a)
Lazy Gardener or Melonator
Do you paint from a photo? That's how I usually do.
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Dec 15, 2019 9:10 AM CST
Name: David Tillyer
New York City (Zone 7b)
Yes, SoCal.
So far, that's what I have been doing. The pictures don't wilt and I work with a painting for days and days. Also, my memory is unreliable and I forget images from my garden to the kitchen table where I paint.
David
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Dec 15, 2019 9:36 AM CST
Name: SoCal
Orange County (Zone 10a)
Lazy Gardener or Melonator
I do oil painting, so I can make as many mistakes and I can still do over. I just finished two paintings, one from Jean Louis David, he painted Napoleon, and the other one I found the picture online, was done in 1843, but I didn't get his name. This is my first life painting class, and I haven't had a drawing class since high school, so my teacher was astonished. But I enjoyed the experience, so my suggestion is to try oil painting.
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Dec 15, 2019 10:22 AM CST
Name: David Tillyer
New York City (Zone 7b)
We should probably take this conversation to the "flower painting list", if there were such a thing. However, I did oil painting many years ago and enjoyed it, but it was
a class in a studio and someone cleaned up after us. That's a pain.

I tried acrylics last hear because a cousin told me it was more forgiving, but I still love the feel of water color. David
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Dec 15, 2019 10:40 AM CST
Name: SoCal
Orange County (Zone 10a)
Lazy Gardener or Melonator
Agree, it's a pain, that's why I only paint in a classroom. I don't want to mess up my house.
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