Tuesday, July 8, 2008

"Golden Eagle Watercolor" 7-7-08

I just finished this 12" x 15" watercolor of a Golden Eagle yesterday. I started it a few months ago and then put it aside. I used watercolors and a few touches of permanent ink pen. I wanted to leave the edges looking washy so you could definitely see that it's a watercolor, and therefor keep some of the freshness. I stroked the feathers on directly with my round brush to show the pointy shape that the Golden Eagle has to his feathers.

Later...some months I should say!... I sat down to finish it, he's been waiting around too long for me! So I just looked for what needed to be made darker, stronger shadows under feathers to make them start to pop a little. I worked on the eye, the most important part of any painting I feel, I added more golden color then lifted out some highlight area with a damp brush, then when it was dry I carefully scratched out a tiny highlight with a razor blade.

I will have prints available of this painting, without the shipping:
note cards = $5 each (8.5"x5.5")
8x10 hand signed print = $20,
matted 8x10 print = $35,
I'm not sure about limited edition prints yet, I'll wait and see about them.
Please just contact me if your interested, I can take credit cards or personal checks. The original painting will also be available, not priced yet or framed.

A bit more about the Golden Eagle, when I was in college I worked as a zoo keeper in Binghamton, NY at the Ross Park Zoo. My favorite area to work was in the aviary; it was up in the woods on the mountain. Each bird had a cage, of course they weren't big enough, but the zoo has made huge improvements over the years, as so many zoos have done. I never forgot the Golden Eagle(s), there might have been two? All the birds of prey they had were brought there because of injury, some wings, some eyesight. The eagles were huge, and yes, their feathers on their head and breast were more 'pointy' than other birds. It was only at feeding time that I didn't really enjoy it, their diet was fresh killed rats from the lab over at SUNY Binghamton. Ok, Ok...I won't go into details here!...but being a zookeeper wasn't all fun and games!

A little more reminiscing...last night I watched a old movie musical called "The Pied Piper of Hamlin"...ok..so I like old musicals!!...anyways...I noticed the feather the pied piper had in his hat was a very long, black and white striped feather. I never noticed it before, but now it popped out at me, it's a "Lady Amherst Pheasant" feather! We had several types of exotic pheasants also in the aviary at the zoo, one of my favorites was the Lady Amherst...wow, so beautiful! I should do a painting of that one!

Perhaps when I go home for a visit I can do a sketching and journaling day at the Ross Park Zoo where I used to work. It's a really nice little zoo, if you're in the area go visit and tell them I sent you! haha...they won't remember me but it'd be fun. PS. I should mention that they have an amazing little aviary now where you can walk in amongst the birds! It's beautiful, has water features, plants, birds everywhere..some hiding, it's very well done!
Please leave me comments below, I'd love to hear from more of you, as I have readers dropping in from around the world!!

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