Sunday, February 1, 2009

Nature in a Sketchbook

                                    A Page from My Sketchbook

This is the latest page I'm working on in my little handmade sketchbook! The sketchbook itself is 8" x 8" and is filled with Arches 140 lb. cold press paper. I painted the feathers in the upper lefthand corner first. They were in the yard near the birdfeeder. I thought the feathers belonged to a Bluejay that just nearly missed being the neighbor cat's breakfast, but after observing other Jays . . . . I'm not so sure. The Jays have a great deal of blue in their feathers and very unique markings as well. Maybe a Mourning Dove or a Mockingbird instead?

The feather in the upper righthand corner is from a Mockingbird. Unfortunately, as I was painting this last night, my husband brought me several more grey feathers. It would seem the great white wholly mammoth (also known as a Siberian Husky) that we affectionally call Susie managed to catch a Mockingbird. How she does it is beyond us. We've yet to see her in action, but she does catch birds from time to time. Anyway . . . .

The eggs in the center are Carolina Wren eggs. The nest portion of the painting is just a small fraction of a real nest. Their nests are deep cavities made out of dead leaves and grasses, bits and pieces of soft plastics (like old newspaper bags), strings, and what have you. This little nest was in our garden shed, and the male wren it in the exact same location that a field mouse had built their nest earlier in the year. We thought the mouse was back and went to remove it. Too late, we saw the eggs! When the female came back, she looked around for several minutes but would not go back into the nest as she knew it had been disturbed. This small piece of art is my way of paying homage to the little wren and her eggs.

I am using this particular art in a piece of jewelry. I'll post an image when I get it created. Hopefully, this week, but the weatherman is predicting rain and more cold temperatures for most of this week. Rain and cold temperatures seriously hamper the jewelry-making process!  I will be listing it in the Etsy shop as well.

5 comments:

  1. These are really lovely, Laure!

    Sounds like Susie is an ace hunter.... the birds had best be on their guard. Last year a friend of mine found an abandoned hummingbird nest (at least that's what we assumed it to be... it was so small that we couldn't think of any other bird in our area that would fit into such a tiny nest) and I now have it on display in my living room! LOL! I'm one of those people that likes to decorate with bits of nature: pinecones, feathers, nests, grapevines, shells, starfish, pretty rocks, etc. My friends used to roll their eyes at my "collection" mixed in with traditional decorative objects throughout the house - now they just accept it as an eccentricity! Personally, I don't think anything that man makes even comes close to what God makes.

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  2. Oh, Teresa, how cool is that! Did it still have the eggs in it or just the nest? Again, you and I must be kindred spirits - I have a wren's nest that was built in my FIL's garage that he gave to me once the birds were finished; I have several broken bird egg shells we've found in the yard; some old bees, dragonflies and butterflies as well! And I do display them and I'm sure folks think it's odd, but that's okay. I guess it is (unless you're an artist)!

    And you're right about birds, well, God, being a far better architect than man.

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  3. Wonderful images and love the handmade sketchbook. Good for you.

    Your paintings are stunning. Well done.

    I absolutely ADORE birds!

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  4. Hi Laure! Wonderful work! Can't wait to see the jewelry and good luck in your Etsy shop!

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  5. Thank you, Ana, and Lori! I too adore birds (in case you couldn't tell)! LOL! Thanks also for the good wishes on the shop!

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