This is a departure for me. I usually do not do songbirds, or birds in general. But I got a commission for a quartet of songbirds and this is the first of four. It is in oil on a type of canvas that is new to me. I learned a lot doing these, expecially what NOT to do! I have always said, each painting should be a learning experience, if at any time you are not learning from each one, either hang it up, or shake it up!
Thursday, February 21, 2008
I was at my easel, as usual, painting away and noticed a flash in my window. To my surprise, this barred owl landed on my shepherd's hook outside my window. He stayed for hours until he moved to my heated bird bath. As we speak, he is patiently waiting in a tree above my deer feeder. I have an unusual amount of squirrels and vermin in my yard...because...well, I let them stay here. I have a feeling this guy thinks he has hit the lotto! And from the amount of, well, eating, he has done today...I think he might stay.
Wednesday, February 13, 2008
I have not been painting for the last four or five days because as all good artists do, we have to do business "stuff" sometimes! The last week was perfect for such an occasion. As many of you know (and thank you sooo much for your calls!!) we have experienced record cold. Temperatures dipped into the negative 20s and windchills in the -40s...no, that is not a typo. These were the kind of temperatures the make you question your existance and why you are here. Anyway, I set up my camera by my window and photo'd the brave little souls that braved the cold and came to the feeder. It was a steady stream of chickadees, woodpeckers, nuthatches and goldfinches. The doves and cardinals were clever enough to stay put and warm.
John and I moved here from Southern California (I know, why, you ask) well, I have been asking myself that the last few days. There are many things I miss about my sunny SoCal, one of them is my garden fence that was dripping with Bougenvilla. Last summer I was thrilled to find one in my local nursery and bought it right away. It is much too cold for them here, but I thought if I loved it enough it would thrive. Well...not so much. It was home for maybe a week and all the flowers fell off and it took on a grey brownish look for the rest of the summer. With the onset of winter, I brought it inside and talked to it, loved it, and it responded to me by dropping all the leaves and turning brown. Yet I perservered, watering and loving it and then quite honestly I just gave up. On the coldest day of this weekend, I was looking out my back door and feeling a little trapped and depressed when I looked down at my bouganvilla and there, to my shock, was a single purple bud and the brown had been replaced with tiny green leaves! Since then, it has many flowers and it is my little glimpse of spring in the dead of winter. It truly is a Winter Miracle!
Monday, February 04, 2008
Super Bowl Sunday we woke up to an absolutely beautiful frost, this is commonly known as a hoar frost. John and I went for a trail ride early in the morning and had the opportunity to see all this beauty and it was so quiet, as if we were the only ones awake. We rode just underneath our resident eagles on the trail and they were very vocal as we passed, but did not move from their branch. If I were to describe a perfect morning, this might have been it.