Sunday, November 1, 2009

Peregrine Falcon - Two ways

Well! Time certainly does fly by when one isn't paying attention! I'm not really sure where two months just went to, but it was just September a few days ago.....right? Amazing how life just seems to continue on without us!

In the past few months I have taken some time to play with some new ideas, new subject matter and different paint. I haven't had a particular agenda other than to let myself really "play" without feeling pressured to create a finished painting or one that is even marketable. It has been both a frustrating and a freeing process, but I'm glad to be doing it. We will never grow if we don't try new things. Even if they don't work out....and I had quite a few that didn't work out....what I learned was worth the effort. I plan to continue down this path for awhile so even if I'm not posting here be assured that I'm still painting. I am just in an experimental mode right now and not every experiment is worth revealing. Some of them are just very personal. And some of them are, well, shall we just say.....butt ugly!!

This post, however, is to show a few of the experiments that didn't turn out too bad. Now, you may think that these look a lot like my other work and you'd be right except my other work has been mostly dogs.
I decided to start my experiments with studies of birds. I'm kind of a closet bird watcher anyway, so this just seemed a natural step.

These two paintings are peregrine falcons that belong to a falconer friend of mine.
Peregrines are amazing hunters to watch and can reach speeds of well over 100 miles per hour when they start in to their stoop on their prey. They hunt by circling high into the air. When they spot their prey they fold their wings and become a teardrop shape hurtling through the sky. In the last seconds they unfold their wings and hit their prey with closed feet, knocking the bird unconscious. After that, it's lunch!

I found the whole falconry process quite fascinating and have ideas for several paintings, but decided to start with simple head studies first and work my way out from there. I started with the pencil study just trying to figure out how to draw feathers. I decided not to confuse myself with color just yet as feathers are not fur! Feathers lay a lot like shingles, but they are not evenly arranged. Then if you add patterns like spots or bars to the mix, well, you've got quite a challenge!!

After I was satisfied with the pencil study I started with the color. This one is done in acrylic. Wow! This much detail takes a lot of work! Both of these studies are only 5" x 7" and I'm glad I didn't try any larger for my first attempt. I was, however, pretty pleased with how they both turned out, though I really think I'm more partial to the black and white version than the color.

So these are representing some of the new directions I'm looking at heading in. Both of these are available for purchase. Inquiries can come to me at

I am fascinated by all the living creatures around us. It amazes me just how well adapted each creature is to it's environment. God's creativity astounds me!!! And I would really like to draw attention to Him by showcasing some of the awesome creatures he's created through my art. That's my hope anyway! Hope you enjoy these!