Zinnia’s make me sentimental

HannahTiffinzinniasketchZinnia’s make me sentimental. My spirit recognizes them as a symbol of change. They are a flower that is sturdy and present in the height of summer, virtually unaffected by the intense heat and dry ground. They drink in the hot sun light and thrive when many other flowers would just curl up and die. They are usually the last flower left in my garden only stopped by heavy frost of an early winters night. I see zinnias as flowers of transition.

Sitting here tonight I let my mind wander as I painted. My thoughts moved in and out of time with the beat. Fall is moving in and summer is moving out and I am feeling restless. My body is aging (and aching wth?!). I am sure that I am starving and I have had like 5 snacks….I worried about how chubby I was going to feel tomorrow and how disappointed (and surprised) I was going to feel in the morning when I face the scale…

I thought about my mother. She’s been gone 14 years now and it seems like it was just yesterday that she was letting me tag along with her while she sketched in the fields trying to capture just one more glimpse of summer before it was totally gone. The trees were full and still soft with newly changing leaves. The corn stalks of umber and ocher were cut short making powerful lines in the landscape. It was heaven to an artist’s eye which is always searching for drama…while the heart is searching for stillness.AirBrush_20180915234028

I think how I took those days for granted and how I often allow my memories of her to be muddied by thoughts of her shortcomings and the things that I missed in my youth. Perhaps I am unfair. Death prevents her from defending herself and she was not much older than than I am now then….of course she did not know what she was doing, now that I am older, I realize that no one knows what they are doing! I really need to stop stepping on the positive pieces of who she was so much.

 

I allow Genesis, my daughter who is almost two now, to come out of her crib tonight AirBrush_20180915213031because she too is restless. She crawls in my lap to watch me paint and listen to piano music. Contemporary is her favorite. She studys my work, the colors of paint, the sounds of the notes and her toy car. I wonder what she is thinking as I snuggle her as close as she will let me without a fuss. And just like that, she is ready to go back. I watch her dad take her back to bed. He honors her requests for a new bottle of milk and her bunny and she feels warm, safe and loved as she blows kisses over his shoulder as they go. Good night Genesis….

AirBrush_20180915234445Our chocolate lab, Tunji,  finds his nightly spot under the table where I paint. Most days he is a complete terror. He is only 5 months old. He is so strong, smart, full of life and playful energy. I love that about him, but I also love how he lays on my feet every evening. This is where he will stay until it is bedtime. He is predictable and loyal and he loves me and two hours later he is still here with me. Right where he will be always.

It brings a tear to my eye tonight to think how incredibly blessed I am. I have everything. I have everything and I am so incredibly grateful to be me. It is predictable that I started my process tonight restless and filled with anxious thoughts….and it is predictable that I finish my evening quiet and calm. That is why I paint.

And in this moment, it is alright that it will soon be fall, it is alright that I have eaten 5 snacks, and I don’t care that I will be bloated tomorrow.

Xoxo, Hannah

What is the most romantic flower?

Hollyhocks

AirBrush_20180914232218I think that hollyhocks are the most romantic flowers on the planet….ok, one of but we will save some of those stories for another day. For me, hollyhocks remind me of sticky summer nights. I am originally from Maryland where it gets so humid that you can not really breath in the air. Some days the days are deemed unsafe to go outside due to the amount of moisture in the air. There are days that are scorching hot, and the nights can be almost equally hot and sticky. Many of these nights it storms.

I lived right on the coast so we would get thunderstorms regularly in the warm months. It was always such a relief when the thunder would come and you knew that rain was on its way. You could smell the rain before it got there. The air held so much charge in it that my hair would actually stand up on my arms and the crickets would get quiet. This is the time of year where hollyhocks were in full bloom.

Hollyhocks can be very tall. I remember them towering over me when I would stand next to them. And those blooms! Oh my goodness, they were so full and heavy. Rich in color. When it would rain hard enough and the wind would blow, it would easily bend the hollow stem of the plant leaving those beautiful blossoms and petals strung across the grass.AirBrush_20180914232317

I have stories of young love and roses, and adventurous stories about honeysuckle and trumpet vine, but there is something about the hollyhock that is hard to explain. I have no stories about romance and this plant, but it’s romantic in my mind…I wonder if it may have something to do with all of the senses that were pushed to extreme in the environment that they bloomed in. I am not sure but there is something romantic there that has absolutely nothing to do with anyone else.

What flower do you think is the most romantic?

Xoxox, Hannah

I believe in marriage, I believe…

30652888_10211134239182931_7703460441686540288_nI believe in marriage. I believe with all of my heart and soul that marriage is sacred and it is important and it’s more relevant today than ever before.  I believe in love….and magic….and soulmates and eternity.

I believe that marriage can last forever and that some of the greatest love stories of our world have not yet been written. I also believe in the power of setting an example and being the exception to the rule. I believe in forgiveness, grace, loyalty, transparency, respect and charity.

I am so incredibly blessed. My whole life is centered around couples who are preparing for their wedding days and the beginning of a new life together. Many of them are consumed with thoughts of the future and what it might hold. Each couple has a different dream, though they all have similar hopes. They all hope for a happy life filled with joy and celebration. They hope for accomplishments and a happy dwelling. Many of them laugh about growing old together and what their children will be like. (note: their children will be nothing like they think!).

There are conversations about firsts. There are new apartments and houses. There are boxes coming and boxes going. Endless trips to home depot and KIA. Wayfare and Amazon are on the top of most of their search bars. Most couples are debating what to toss out and what to keep and what items they will need to find to make their home the right environment to birth their hopes and dreams into reality.PinkandpurplebridalbouqetHannahTiffin

I believe that a watercolor portrait of the bridal bouquet is one of those awesome foundational pieces a couple can get which will set the rest of their home in the right direction. It is my proposal that couples consider commissioning a watercolor portrait of the brides bouquet. Well, of course it is duhhhh, I paint them! Yes, we know that but why? Why do I exclusively paint bridal bouquets and how does that have anything to do with what we are talking about here? Is this a sales pitch? Yes. It is. This is a super important sales pitch with a strong foundation built on passion, purpose and belief.

The bridal bouquet is a symbol for one of the largest rights of passage in a woman’s entire life.

Think about this for a moment. The bridal bouquet is held by the woman as she stands eagerly waiting to step out onto the aisle (duh, but what does that mean Hannah?). She picks up the bouquet as a single woman knowing when she lets it go, it will be to take the hand of the man she will spend the rest of her life with. She picks it up knowing that when she puts it down….nothing will ever again be the same. She holds it tightly in anticipation as she takes that first step towards her groom to be. She clutches the bouquet tightly, and takes another step. Each step she takes is movement towards commitment, away from individualism and towards unity. In this instance a bride is Thewatercolorbouquetfilled with love, joy, anticipation, promise and hope.

What about the groom? Think about the groom in this moment. Staring down the aisle. Standing nervously in front of everyone he deems important. Waiting for the moment when his bride will appear before him, a room away. When she appears. She moves towards him slowly. She takes his breath away and he tries not to cry. (They all cry and it is so wonderfully beautiful)  With each step he realizes that life is about to change. There is only flowers between them as she stands before him at the altar. And then…she hands it off. Her hands are free and she willingly gives them to him in that moment and for forever. In this moment the groom is also filled with love, joy, anticipation, promise and hope.

Let us really get this understanding. Let us bring this moment into strong focus because I believe the weight of this moment is often lost today. Once the bride arrives to her groom, her bouquet is passed off….its placed aside and she joins hands with her groom. She is no longer singular. She is joined to him and he is joined to her. Unity has come. That bouquet is still and forever a symbol of the promise made, promise kept. It will forever be a symbol of love, joy, anticipation, hope and promise.

THAT! That….that is why I create watercolor portraits of bridal bouquets. There are very few moments in life like that moment. A painting will last for generations. It is crazy to realize that this portrait of your bridal bouquet could actually hang in your great, great grandchildren’s home. But it very well could! There it will hang some day after you are long gone, serving as a testament of your commitment and beliefs to the children of the future. As a testament to your legacy and proof that love does exist. Love is real and love is eternal.IMG_20171001_211325.jpg

I believe that our children need to see more examples of love. As a wife I need to see reminders of joyful unity and strong bonds, especially when life becomes trying. My husband does also. I believe we are influenced greatly by our environments. I believe a portrait of your bridal bouquet is a very modern, long lasting powerful way to keep and honor those positive vibes.

Whew! I am so blessed to do what I do. If you would like to have a consultation I would love to chat with you!

XOXOX, Hannah

What is the deal with purple? A Brides guide to getting the right shade…

So… is it purple purple, red purple, blue purple, violet, plum, could it be burgundy? What color is burgundy any way, is red burgundy or more of a wine? Ok, what color wine….like red red, deep red or berry?

As a bride who loves anything in the purple, red, or deeper colors you are going to have the above conversation far more times than you will want to. So this blog is going to help you choose the purple that is right for you and it will help give you ways to answer your vendors “purple” question with confidence! (Awesome!)

First we must choose the purple that is right for our dress selection!

There are two points to consider here the bridal gown and the bridesmaids gowns. As a bride you most likely (soooo generalizing here) are going to choose one of the million shades of cream or ivory. What you select will have a HUGE impact on the flowers you will carry.

The important notes are in the shadows. Of course your dress is light….but what color is it really? If you look at it, I mean reeeeeeeally look at it you will start to see greens, blues, and pinks and you will start to see how it absorbs and reflects the colors in the environment around it.  In the folds of the gown you will see its dominant tones. It will show a color that is warm such as yellow or beige or red gray, or grey pinks or greens….or it will show cool tones that feel more blue. If you are not sure, ask your dress attendant at the bridal shop and make sure that the lighting in the dressing area offers you a real look at what color you are selecting.

Warm shadows = Warm purples or red purples and lavender

Cool shadows = Cool purples or blue purples and lavender.

Warm Bridal Gown = Warm Bridesmaids Gowns

Cool Bridal Gown = Cool Bridesmaid Gowns

Seeing purple like an artist:

As an artist, my eye can easily see not only the color that you give me, but I can also see all of the colors in the color that you have. My eyes have been trained to see color in a more vibrational way. I am aware of how a color vibrates, how it absorbs and reflects light and how much of each color (in the case of purple, reds and blues) are added to make it up!

As someone who may not be a complete color geek like myself, (though you might be seeing you are still reading this!) you may need a simple way to tell if your purple is on the red side or the blue so I have added a few for you to learn from!

The purple spectrum: On the left you will see red purples or “warm purple” and on the right you will see cool purple or “blue purples”.

Here is another spectrum option that shows pastels or more floral tones: 

purple spectrum18

 

I know from the spectrum photos it all looks obvious. The blue purples look blue and the red purples look red. Flowers classified as purple will live in that more vague middle pastel zone.

Ok, so now that you have chosen your purple here are some of my absolute favorites that you may like to put into your bouquet!

Here are some awesome red purple flower options:

Here are some beautiful blue purple options:

The flower types listed are lisianthus, spray rose, ranunculus and stock! So there you have it! Purple! If you would like any more purple info, please reach out and I will be happy to continue on. I can talk purple and flowers for days!! Until then, happy purpling!

Love,

Hannah

Anemone Flowers

ef40fcb238ee386b6dfe09cffeefcba2--anemone-flower-anemone-bouquetAnemone Flowers are a very popular choice for wedding flowers, here are my two cents….

I love them in bouquets because they offer such strong pops of color but also because they have stems and buds that are full of character! They are so fun and so quirky, yet clean and dramatic.

They have a dramatic story about them. When I googled “Anemone Flower meaning” I got this, “The name anemone comes from the Greek word for “wind flower.” According to Greek mythology, the anemone sprang from Aphrodite’s tears as she mourned the death of Adonis. Thought to bring luck and protect against evil, legend has it that when the anemone closes its petals, it’s a signal that rain is approaching” From Teleflora.com

The colors that I see most often are burgundy and white. 

The white seem to always reflect a cool tone which is great if you are looking for a cool pop of color. They are bright and they go really well with a clean look and a wedding dress that reflects cool (or blue shadows in the folds….call me if you need clarification I will give you a whole geeky explanation).

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Bridal Flowers, Watercolor by Hannah Tiffin

As an artist I love this about white anemone, as a wedding designer, I make sure to ask to see the dress before I recommend them. Not only are they very bright and cool, they also can be temperamental when it comes to care and longevity. I would not recommend them to be used in bouts and corsages. If you are having anemones in your wedding, making sure they have a good water source is important.

One great thing about anemone is that they are so versatile, they can be casual or they can be classic! I just love their fun nature. I love to paint them also!