These mostly unidentified Flowery Friday watercolors were painted by former University of Idaho Faculty Sara Annette Bowman. Bowman served as Professor of Drawing (later Free Hand and Industrial Drawing) from some of the earliest days for the University. Starting in 1893, she taught drawing along with other art media until 1901.
Bowman was a graduate of the Illinois State Normal University and the School of Design in Davenport, Iowa. Beyond this she also studied wood carving and modeling (sculpture). Before she came to the University of Idaho she was a drawing instructor for the Tacoma Public Schools from 1890-1892.
Her first year of teaching at the university college students not taking Mechanical Drawing were required to take Free Hand for the same number of hours. This drawing class consisted of:
Drawing from objects and casts in pencil, charcoal and crayon; also pen and ink drawings.
Painting from still life, flowers, and fruits, and nature.
Modeling in clay from cast, photograph and nature.
We don’t know when exactly these flowers were painted. Only one in the entire portfolio is dated 1904. It is possible some of them were done while she was a professor, it is also possible they were all done after she left the university. No matter when they were painted, we can’t deny she had an eye for beauty.
Happy Flowery Friday!
Watercolors courtesy Sara Annette Bowman. Flowers and Fields Around Moscow: Portfolio. MG 5023