Paintings are just more fun when you have something to observe. I try the imaginary one, but my mind can't quite recall all the details. As my artist friend says, "I'm just intrigued by realism." Though I do enjoy a good abstract, or a swirl of paint on a page, there is something to be said for doing a true study of an object. These little mandarins are so sweet this time of year, and if they sit still long enough without being eaten, they make nice little subjects.