Thursday, March 25, 2010

An Evening Grosbeak tale

An Evening Grosbeak Tale,
Some years ago a box containing an seemingly done for bird arrived on my back porch.Someone decided that a Wildlife Artist would know what to do. As I gazed into the box I was amazed at the beauty of this creature all decked out in his yellow green, with his black and white wings. His fate now in my hands,What would his price tag be for meeting the wrong picture window or windshield this cold December day?
He appeared for all intensive purposes to be ready to migrate on to that Golden Habitat in the sky but I sensed something about him and decided to let him be the judge. I placed some water and a little dish of birdseed inside the box and left him alone. I was surprised the next morning to find him in the same place in the same condition, as I was prepared for some post mortem sketches and then the transfer of his remains to the woods for his final roosting. The following day was the same except for a new gift which I believe he gave to me as a sign. A little bird poop on the shelf. Could this be from him? It was out of the box. Hmmm.... The following day two new gifts had been offered, But there he was in the same place in the box. This went on for several weeks and finally one day there he was standing on the shelf . The little bird would return to his box at the end of each day. A few days later he would travel more and more around around my porch and leave gifts.He now varied his walks with wing beats and would do reps of window climbs and when tired would return to his box. A few days past and I came out to check on him and he was already out for his exercise and gave me a look which I interpreted as a request to go home. I opened the window and a moment later he flew out as if nothing had ever happened to him. He perched in a tree for about ten minutes and then took off like a shot. He was gone.
Although I missed him, I was glad that he decided to recover and return to his homeland. A few weeks later I happened to look out my back window and was shocked by what I saw. The entire back yard was filled with Evening Grosbeaks. They were hundreds and they were only on my property. It was one of the most visual sights I can ever recall. The brightness of the their plumage against the overcast woods was fantastic. Then suddenly they all took flight and were gone. This species of bird had never been to my feeder before and have never returned. I became interested in them and have learned that they were once one of the most popular birds in the Northeast just as recent as 20 years ago. It appears that they are in serious decline.
I would welcome any news of these birds. Hope you have enjoyed this weeks post. Enjoy the Spring. KJS
This painting is a study in oils ,size 5x7 on hardboard and is available.

Thursday, March 18, 2010

The Irish Wolfhound

The Irish Wolfhound.
I hope you enjoy this portrait of an Irish Wolfhound. This was a small oil, 5x7 painted on masonite. These are beautiful dogs and very gentle.I would like to have one myself. Happy St. Patricks Day Everyone.

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Irish Blood American Dreams: Father Corby

Irish Blood American Dreams: Father Corby:

Upon the present day Gettysburg Battlefield there are two places which are important stops for me, One the Irish Brigade monument and The Father Corby Statue. It is a stirring monument to the moment of his address and words of absolution he gave upon the Brigade as they prepared to enter battle. Catholic and non -Catholic side by side took to thier knees and bowed thier heads.

This study in oils on canvas board was rendered in the 1860's style of two colors on a medium tone. Surrounding myself with images of Corby I set out to capture a likeness and completed the portrait you see.

I urge everyone to study this Important American historical figure and note the contributions he made to country and faith.

Thursday, March 4, 2010

Irish Blood American Dreams, a painting to think about...

Irish Blood American Dreams:

Denny's restaurant's latest advertizing celebrating the Irish Famine has struck a truly deserved negative chord in the Irish Community and sparked an outrage. Perhaps some have forgotten in this country that this famine is still recent history and that much of what we do today as Americans is because of the sacrifice of the victims of this tragedy. The young men fortunate enough to have survived this starvation travelled to America by the thousands in the 1860's and filled the ranks of both Federal and Confederate Armies and shed thier blood so that this Country could survive.

I offer this portrait of this North Carolina Soldier to represent the memory of these men and hope that it will remind our corporate giants that a famine is not something to take lightly.