Can you guess the plant?
It looks like a huge thistle, (which it actually is) and yet looks so tasty at the same time. You guessed it, it is an artichoke plant in bloom. I first saw a blooming artichoke when I arrived in Victoria and fell in love with it. Even better that it is edible. However, it is only edible before it blooms into that beautiful purple color.
The globe artichoke is a thistle and the part that we eat is actually a flower bud. The "petals" are called bracts and at the base of each bract is a tender portion that makes up part of the heart.
The heart, is of course, located at the center and is harvested into yummy, delicious food.
However, I do have fond memories of my mother preparing the whole artichoke. We would carefully peel away the bracts, dip them in melted butter, and scrape away the tender bases with our teeth.
Tender Hearts is the painting I taught this past weekend in my Funky Florals class. The photo was taken in Spain, which is where I occasionally take a group of artists to experience the wonderful culture. Spain is also one of the largest producers of artichokes.
It was requested that I post a work in progress photo as well so here it is:
To all those that did attend the class, thank you for your support, your friendship, and your artistic talent. I love what I do and I am grateful that I get to share my passion for painting with you.