There are many gum trees where I walk with Nim and a favourite has to be Eucalyptus blackelyi Blackely’s Red Gum. There's some good technical details about some of our locals including this beauty in the awesome Forest Trees of Australia by Douglas J. Boland Maurice William McDonald.
I love the juvenile leaves - not the ones that come up with the seedlings - they’re good but they come opposite each other. The new growth is what particularly grabs my attention. Sometimes the new growth leaves are even heart shaped but hardy like most eucalypts. They come alternate along the branch and often droop down from the tree. It all just works together and has been the inspiration for many an inclusion in my oil paintings and now my hanging leaf sculptures made from paper mache and wire.
My good family have been putting up with my placements of these leaves all over the house. The real and my interpretations. Here in the kitchen some of the real beauties frame a little Katrina Daly watercolour (another artists from Napoleon Reef http://www.tartsgallery.com/katrina-daly.html), sit under a Ken Stirling work – just a snippet of it here (he’s just up the hill – a Blue Mountains artist http://home.exetel.com.au/kensterling/september_2008_exhibition) and hang out with the little man doll – who put that there?