The Collective: Succulent Sunflowers

Dear Tina,

It was a bit of a bummer to see our work damaged from the postal service. I wonder what happened there! WOW! You did a really nice job flattening everything and packing it up for me. Thank you. I am happy to say it arrived safe and sound.

Summer sure is slipping by quickly. I find I gauge the passage of time by what flowers are in bloom. Right now the sunflowers are popping up all over. I love how their happy faces move with the sun, and how tall and proud they stand. Although I keep planting them in my garden I think the birds are enjoying them before they get a chance to germinate.

I recently went on a little excursion to Buttonwood Farms . This quintessential New England farm does a beautiful job of preserving the pastoral landscape. They maintain the historic stone walls and are devoted to giving their animals a wonderful quality of life.

My favorite part of the farm is the fourteen acres of sunflowers they plant every year for their annual  sunflower fund raiser.  They reap approximately 300,000 blooms that are sold to benefit the Make-A-Wish Foundation of Connecticut, a non-profit organization dedicated to granting wishes to children with life-threatening medical conditions. One hundred percent of the proceeds go the organization. Whatever isn’t sold gets fed to the cows so nothing is wasted.

My latest piece for The Collective was inspired by the beautiful energy I felt at the farm. So many people came out to have their pictures taken with these massive flowers and walk through the maze they created.

My painting started off with an abstract underpainting and progressed from there. It went through many stages of color along the way. In the end, I wanted the painting to express the vibrancy of a summer day.

Nature can truly inspire JOY! @lauragaffke Click To Tweet

Here is the final piece:

Hope things are well in your world!

love ya!

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