SCARLET HIBISCUS | Niki ButcherCorkscrew Swamp Sanctuary © 2017
Photographic Story Clyde and I lugged his Pentax 6×7 800mm camera down the Corkscrew Swamp Sanctuary boardwalk for him to photograph their Ghost Orchid. After we set up the camera, Clyde had to wait for the right light. While he waited, I walked around the boardwalk and discovered beauties of my own. When I came across this rare native Scarlet Hibiscus, I was enthralled. It’s red is so intense it vibrates against the green of the forest. I felt like I had found a treasure! When I made my way back to Clyde, he was very frustrated. There were so many people on the boardwalk that it vibrated the camera, and he couldn’t get an image that was in focus. He may have had a problematic photographic day, but I had a great one. The native Scarlet Hibiscus was once all over Florida, especially along the roadsides. However, years ago the state was on a mission to destroy any marijuana plants they could find. Without flowers on the Scarlet Hibiscus bush, the leaves look very much like marijuana. Yes, the state cut them down. Today they are very slowly making a comeback. Fortunately, Corkscrew has done an excellent job of keeping the plants alive and well. The Art of Hand Painting Black and White Photographs Photographed with a Sony digital camera and instead of oil painting with Q-tips and cotton balls, she was able to paint using Photoshop. Changing from the old-fashioned way of doing her art, to the new ‘fashion’ of using technology was challenging, but she’s enjoying getting back to her own personal expression. Archival Print Making Niki’s open edition gicleé artwork is printed on Sunset Bright Velvet Rag matte finish paper using eight archival inks. A state-of-the-art Epson Stylus Pro printer creates deep, rich dark values that hold subtle detail in the shadows as well as bright vivid colors that are truly tropical.