Friday, March 28, 2008

Golden Eagle

The Golden Eagle, sacred bird to some Native Americans can soar for long periods on thermal winds without flapping a wing. Their immaculate eye sight always on the look out for prey.

When potential prey is spotted they tuck in their two meter wing span and swoop down on their prey at speeds of up to 200 km per hour.The Golden Eagle preys on other birds, small mammals, reptiles and fish.

One of the largest birds of prey the Golden Eagle nests in the crags of mountains and defends a large territory where it can have numerous nests built of sticks and lined with leaves and soft down.

The spectacular nuptial flight of the Golden Eagle involves the male swooping down on the female who at the the last minute turns on her back and their claws touch.

This water colour painting is larger than the other bird illustrations I have been doing for the last month or so measuring 380mm x 270 or 10" x 15" inch.

Saturday, March 22, 2008

Original Chicken

The Moa or Red Jungle Fowl is no ordinary chicken, first domesticated thousands of years ago in Asia, this Fowl is considered to be the ancestor of all domestic chickens. The Jungle Fowl is found throughout Asia, believed to have originated in Thailand and transported as far as Hawaii by the Polynesians in their dugout canoes. The feet are chopped off in the photo but the water colour painting includes the feet of the rooster. I still have a number of bird sketches to paint and I Imagine birds will keep me busy for another week or two before moving on to another subject.

I was trying to change the look of my blog earlier and did something with the HTML coding that I could not undo and was eventually forced to change the template to get the blog looking something like a blog again. Anyway blogging is a constant learning process for me and the more things I try the more experience I will gain.

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Great Spotted Woodpecker

According to my reference material there are over 200 different Woodpecker species around the globe.

Woodpeckers are featured in folklore and mythology from the Americas to darkest Africa, but the one I like to believe is that if you have a Woodpecker nesting in a tree in your garden it will bring you luck.

I would love to sit in a garden and hear the tap tap as they bore into the wood to make their nests and watch this beautiful little bird feeding its chicks.

This water colour depicts the Great Spotted Woodpecker, common to Europe and Asia.

On another note I have had to cut back on the number of drops with EC due to repeatedly running out of bandwidth. Over the years I have managed to get through each month with 3 gigs of bandwidth. Since starting with EC my usage has averaged 15 Gigs a month, at a converted rate of about 11$ per gig it is starting to get costly.

I find it hard to believe I am using that much bandwidth dropping EC cards and imagined someone had accessed my login codes and was stealing my bandwidth. I had my SP check for me but that is not happening.

The last few days I have closely monitored the usage and worked out I can only drop about 100 cards a day to survive till the end of the month. This basically means covering my inbox daily.

Any suggestions from the pro IT people on how to save on band width and participate in a meaningful manner will be most welcome.

Monday, March 10, 2008

Tawny Owl

Its been a while since my last post, my art was placed on the back burner for a while in attempting to deal with some unexpected circumstances that will influence our lives for the immediate future. Being the weekend though I can put these problems aside and finish some of the work I started previously.

Tawny Owl
Over the centuries Mythology has associated Owls with wisdom, evil, and even death. These solitary nocturnal birds are revered by some and disliked by others. The Tawny Owl's fierce defence of its nest has made it responsible for more injuries to humans than any other bird.

The Tawny Owl is the most common and widespread Owl in Europe, its soundless flight, and amazing eyesight make, it a fearsome predator of small rodents. Love it or hate it, the distinctive cry of this owl carries for a kilometer or more and is the one heard by most people.

Another paradox associated with these solitary birds is their collective noun "Parliament of Owls" probably because they call to each other across acres of forest.

In keeping with the parliamentary theme I thought I would call this water colour painting "Good night George" (Bush) or the "Silent politician" but I am not sure this little marvel of nature deserves such a dubious title, so if anyone can come up with a suitable title over the next week then 100 EC Credits will be your reward.

Thursday, March 6, 2008

European Robin

The Red Red Robin
Harry Woods was so inspired by this national bird of the UK that he wrote the words for "When the Red Red Robin comes bob, bob, bobbin along, " Later recorded by many famous singers like "Louis Armstrong," "Bing Crosby,' 'Doris Day,' 'Tennessee Ernie Ford,' 'Susan Hayward' and many others.

For those of you who are English Football fans its also the theme song for the Charlton Athletics Addicks sung at every home game when they enter the Valley pitch by Billy Cotton.

To my Son, family and friends living in the UK this one is for you.

A 200 mm L X 270 mm W 9' x 12' inch water colour illustration.

Tuesday, March 4, 2008

African Hoopoe

African Hoopoe
This is one of those weeks where I have been itching to get back to my easel and start something meaningful, but all kinds of unexpected situations have kept me otherwise occupied. I did manage to complete another small bird illustration of an African Hoopoe over the weekend.

The African Hoopoe, common throughout Africa South of the Sahara and Madagascar, is not an endangered species. They normally nest in holes wherever they find them and make a Hoop- hoop sound which gives them their name.

I have also been looking at some Art marketing sites but I am not sure I want to direct potential buyers away from my site to one of those. One of our large art sites features about 2000 local artists and I just feel that the availability of thousands of other artworks on the site will distract potential clients from my work.

I have listed a number of paintings with them but want to keep it totally seperate from this site. I know they offer all the payment facilities that I don't have but it also has an effect on the pricing.

So if there are any good suggestions or advice anyone can offer I am all ears.