Last dragonfruit of the week, and last little tidbit of knowledge. The real name for this fruit is the Pitaya, and surprisingly, they are native to Cental America, not Southeast Asia. They grow on cactus like trees, and from what I can tell, the big supplier to this area is Vietnam. The red dragon fruit seems to come from Vietnam, and some of the white variety (white on the inside) might come from Malaysia or Thailand, but the bulk of what I see is Vietnamese. Wikipedia has a pretty good article on them here if you would like to see some more pictures.
On a side note, although at some point I will want to sell these paintings, right now I'm really just working my way through things. Nothing is automatic. I have to think very hard about every color I mix, about every brushstroke that I take. Half the time, my colors turn out totally muddy and awful. I've seen quotes from other artists about how the life of an artist is to subject oneself to constant frustration and feelings of self-doubt. I can definitely commiserate a bit. I usually finish a painting and have this amazing feeling, akin to a runner's high, where I feel like I got it, I understand it. Then I walk away from whatever it is that I've done, and I take another look at it, and I start to see all the things that are wrong. Take, for example, the first version of today's painting:
Do I love the colors? Yes, they're fun, vivid, bold. But the piece overall was just a mess. I was kind of in a groove when I did this one, and so I think I got a bit cocky and didn't think about the composition before I started. As a result, the fruit looks like it is falling off of the picture plane. Everything is sitting in the bottom right hand corner, and your eye has no reason to look at the rest of the image. So, in the end, I totally wiped it off and came back the next day. Giving my eyes a rest can have a wonderful effect. I thought it through more carefully, and my finished product (first image) I think was much better than the first. I still have such a long way to go, but I'm totally enjoying this.