21 June 2016

Octopus Garden

The Beatles' song prompt was "The Octopus's Garden," which would probably lead most people to think about an under-the-surface scene with waving fronds of seaweed, but I've been thinking a lot lately about changing the composition of my boring back yard, so it took me to a different place. I've always loved gardens where there are converging beds and paths, with a destination point in the middle (or multiple destination points, if there's room)--well, let's face it, what I'd really like is to have the Versailles gardens in my back yard!

Thinking about the octopus made me remember the wagon wheel gardens I had seen, where each spoke was a gravel or tree bark path, and the spaces in between were dedicated to different plants and flowers (many times herbs), so I decided, why not an octopus shape for a garden?

I didn't think sufficiently about proportions when I was drawing the underpinning, so the arm paths are a little too wide, the garden contents a little too small, and the furniture in the central head is out-of-proportion tiny to the rest of the stuff, but I couldn't resist putting in a bench, a couple of adirondack chairs, and a fire pit to give the guy a face.

Larger spaces between four of the legs were dedicated to roses on one side and vegetables on the other, and the rest are filled in with a variety of herbs (thyme, sage, rosemary, parsley, basil, marjoram, parsley, scented geraniums), decorative cabbages, lavender bushes, and a strip to grow cut flowers for the house.

I doubt I would actually do an octopus garden in my yard, but what a fun exercise!

Micron pen, watercolor.

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