I have two suet feeders because a few years ago one disappeared a week after I put it out. I bought another one and the next spring I found the original one at the edge of the lawn. So I put both out. One at the front of the house and the other hangs just outside the dining room window at the back. The front one is more popular. The back gets most of its activity when the Hairy Woodpecker is occupying the one out front.
This Downy Woodpecker is a frequent visitor to both.
I walked my usual route but in the opposite direction and it looked very different.
I signed up to do the #30x30DirectWatercolor2018 challenge issued by Marc Taro Holmes. I was inspired by all those who posted their practice/preparatory pieces to do one of my own in May.
This is a direct watercolour done from a photo of myself and three friends. I wasn’t going for a likeness; my aim was to have them look like people.
Once June started I was in the midst of another art project with a deadline coming soon so I haven’t been doing much of anything else. However, I did another direct watercolour of one of my friends from the same photograph trying to get a likeness this time. I hope to get time to do the other and maybe myself as well.
This is a great exercise and I hope I get time to do some more before the month is up. In any case I am really enjoying the challenge of not drawing with a pencil first and I plan to do more of this.
This crab apple tree is located between 2 large pine trees in my front yard in Ottawa. This year it was visited by a Pileated Woodpecker who worked on a couple of the branches. One of the branches came down in the last wind storm. Every year I expect it to die but it’s still surviving. I have painted it in bloom and in the fall and decided this time to concentrate on the bark.
I was raking leaves that didn’t get cleaned up last fall and noticed that the rhubarb was up.
I took a break to take a photo of the rhubarb which I used the next day to do a quick watercolour sketch.
I did a wet in wet under painting and then played with what was there to make it look like flowers. I don’t know of any flowers that look like the blue ones I painted. They may only exist in my imagination.
Spring has finally arrived. There are buds on the trees and the grass is green. The change in the weather inspired me to paint the following watercolours.
I decided to play with paint and chose for the first painting a limited palette of turquoise, yellow, and green.
After the first layer dried I painted in the grasses and added some purple for contrast.
For the second painting I used more colours.
I wasn’t very imaginative with what I added after the first layer dried. Maybe it isn’t finished yet.
Anyway, I did have fun and that’s the main thing.
Brightly coloured birds in the sumac drew my attention. These were the males. The females are more subdued in colour but more elegant. You 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.
The 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.