Branching out in your florals

Branching out in your Florals

      Floral and botanical motifs are an absolute favorite and standby in henna design.  From festival style designs, to bridal, baby bumps, henna crowns, designs for children, complex or simple, flowers come in so many shapes and sizes that they become both tried and true, and a favorite finishing touch or core to many henna designs.  We tend to naturally gravitate towards designs that reflect what is already beautiful in nature.  Flowers naturally can reflect both symmetry and asymmetry, symmetry looking "correct" to our eyes, and asymmetry looking "off" makes it intriguing and can draw you into a design.  Floral motifs can be seen in the form of full flowers viewed head on or from the side, petals, vines, buds, and fillers that represent floral shapes.  I have found that there are three main types of floral designs seen in henna, all of which are beautiful in their own way, and can be combined to add a unique twist to flowery designs.  

     The first floral type I will just call "henna style" flowers.  These are often mandala like, even, repetitive, and built out of simple layers to make an ornate and symmetrical flower. "Henna style" flowers blend beautifully with paisleys, which give a leaf-like impression. Here are some examples:

      The second floral type I will call "realistic style" flowers. Realistic style flowers will mix up the angle of the flower, incorporating side views, top views, buds, and flowers just opening, often also adding in less paisleys and more tear drop leaf shapes.  Often times, realistic style flowers will emphasize subtle shading and steer away from patterned fillers, to give a simple, 3D effect.  Here are some examples:  

 This last example has both realistic elements, and characteristics of the next floral style, "cartoon"!

     The final floral type I think of as "cartoon style" flowers.  These are relied on heavily in gulf style henna.  I call any flowers with extra bold lines, simpler shapes, and fun, fresh, patterned fillers "cartoon style".  They don't necessarily look childish, but they do look dramatic, a bit edgy, and definitely whimsical and fun.  

Which is YOUR favorite floral style?  Which do you think tend to blend and balance each other the best?