Are montsera leaves the new orchids?

Are montsera leaves the new orchids? - student project

Montsera leaves seem to be popping up everywhere, including my daughter's bedroom, and for a good reason, the plant is beautiful, it grows astonishingly quickly and adds a lush rain forest look the the place.

So here we are, the first painting / project in my new sketchbook (Saunders waterford paper), it was a great project to really get the feel of the paper.

 

The little exercise was a perfect way to test what i can achieve on this paper and what effects i should expect.Are montsera leaves the new orchids? - image 1 - student project

I went 1 step further and also tested the masking tape, to see if it will damage my final piece (had awful trouble with masking fluid when using it on Khadi paper as it pipped/ flacked my paper, so i didn't want any surprises this time round). Saying that i was still not very happy with my masking fluid's performance on the Saunters CP paper as the edges came out ragged. I guess some paint seeped through the small grooves in the CP paper.Are montsera leaves the new orchids? - image 2 - student project

 

To draw the leaf, i have used a  grid tool and used a 8x8 grid. I drew it first on a piece of print paper, outlined the final drawing with a fine liner and then copied the design on watercolour paper using a light box. I guess I could have drawn the leaf straight on the watercolor paper, but I like having a linedrawing of the final design, in case I decide that the colours didn't really workout or that I want to redo the painting at a later stage.Are montsera leaves the new orchids? - image 3 - student project

i also keep a copy of a premarked 8x10 grid so that I use to draw any further sketches using the lightbox (so that i don't have to redraw the grid for each line drawing)

Are montsera leaves the new orchids? - image 4 - student projectAre montsera leaves the new orchids? - image 5 - student project

With that, here is my final piece. Overall I am pretty happy with the  results, but if I had to do it all over again, I'd probably go with a warm green underwash as opposed to the blue that I have used here.Are montsera leaves the new orchids? - image 6 - student project