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Brightly coloured birds in the sumac drew my attention.  These were the males. The females are more subdued in colour but more elegant. Female evening grosbeak in sumac - watercolorYou have to look harder to see them and when they are by themselves they are harder to identify. Fortunately this one was in a large flock of both male and female Evening Grosbeaks.



I haven’t had any turkeys visiting me this winter. Last winter there were three groups that came fairly regularly. Occasionally they all would be here at the same time. This is one of the turkeys of a group of three that visited the most often and continued into the spring and early summer. The first time I saw the group it consisted of 3 adult males. During the winter one of the males was replaced by a female. The other two groups were larger and consisted of juveniles. One group was usually all male (8-10) and the other a mixture (11-13).  I think there was some movement between the 2 groups.
watercolour portrait of a wild turkeyThe group of three came so often that they learned not to be afraid of me and I learned to distinguish between the two males. This is Harry.



Snowy Hillside

Snow scenes are another thing I need to practice. This watercolour is from a photo I took a few weeks ago on my afternoon walk.

I usually leave too much white. In this one I could have left a bit more white but I  think it does look like snow.

A Crooked House

I know that I need practice drawing and painting buildings.  Here are two watercolours of buildings from photos I took on my trip last summer.

This one is almost straight.  It’s of a house in Lunenburg, Nove Scotia.


This one is from lower town Quebec City.


Sometimes one scene can provide inspiration for multiple paintings.

Sometimes it takes multiple tries until what you have on paper feels right.

These 4 watercolours are from the same photograph that was taken in the Languedoc region of France several years ago.

This one was painted about a year ago and most resembles the photograph.

Trying to be looser,  this one was painted 2 weeks ago.

This one was painted last week.

I finished  this one yesterday.

I like something about each one but I think I’ll have to do it again because none are quite “there ” yet.

With this photograph it will take multiple attempts to get it the way I want.  However, I can now see at least  two different directions I could go in and so maybe it will turn out that the photograph will be the inspiration of multiple paintings.

Costa Rica – Landscape

This watercolour was done from a photograph taken several years ago on a trip to Costa Rica. I’ve had the photograph in my  file to paint for quite a while but couldn’t figure out exactly how to do it.  That was when I was copying the photographs more or less exactly.  Now that I’m taking a looser more interpretive approach  I found it a little easier.

Riotous Colour

I started this watercolour with a wet in wet under painting having no idea where I was going to go with it.  I then searched through my photographs looking for some ideas that would fit.  I chose a photo taken from the window of my motel room on the way back from my trip to Nova Scotia.  It was October and the colours of the trees were brilliant.

I had taken the picture when I arrived. The next day was dark and I encountered heavy rain from Montmagny (east of Quebec City) through to Montreal.  Until then I had only encountered one rain shower which occurred on the second day of my trip so I was very lucky.

Down the Back Road

This watercolour painting is loosely based on  a photograph I took while driving down a back road near my cottage.

I’ve been trying to not copy everything I see especially when I work from photographs.  In this painting I started with a loose wet in wet wash then added the details.  It has the same “feel” as the photograph and what I remember of the scene but it’s definitely not a copy.

There Be Dragons

Last summer I had the opportunity to see Kumo and Long Ma, two creations of La Machine, wandering about Ottawa.

I did this watercolour from one of my photographs.


Long Ma, Horse-Dragon


Sometimes I walk by the same scene I’ve passed many times and suddenly see something new.  A mallard walking beside the road drew my attention to the fence and from there my eyes went to the trees beyond.

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