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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 Egret

Had some fun with the background on this one.  It’s from a photo from one of my travels.  In my sketchbook I have a very crude ink sketch of it standing in the water.  Fortunately I was able to grab the camera as it took flight.

Deer Portraits

There have been lots of deer here lately so I have had the opportunity to do some deer portraits.

I did them from my photographs with watercolours and watercolour pencils

Deer Sketches

Last summer I was visited by a young deer that spent quite a bit of time outside the window at my cottage in Calabogie.

Here are two watercolour sketches I did recently from the photographs I took.

deer-watercolourThis is the first one I did.  It is only 4 x 6 inches and I decided that I shouldn’t have added the background.

deer-watercolor-sketchIn this one I found a better paint mixture to match his coat.

16-6-28-deerThis is one of 3 pages of quick pen sketches I did of the deer.  I don’t do enough of these.  I tend to grab my camera first.  He spent so much time here, I was able to get many photographs as well as 3 pages of sketches.  As you can see there are no antlers in the pen sketches.  I only noticed them when I had the photos up on the computer.

Experimenting with Black

I’ve been experimenting with watercolours with black subject matter.  In the first one I mixed my blacks and tried to build up the dark colour.  It was black but looked overworked.  I got discouraged and didn’t finish it.   Next I tried doing a crow  using black paint.



Watercolour Sketches

Here are some quick watercolour sketches I did recently.

Common Mergansers

Common Mergansers



Evening Grosbeaks

Evening Grosbeaks

They are all from photographs that I took at or near my cottage in Calabogie.


On one of  my recent early morning walks I came face to face with the local fox.  After staring at each other for a few seconds I tried to turn my camera on and get the lens cap off and s/he took off down the road.  The fox turned off down  a  neighbour’s driveway.  By the time I got to the driveway it was gone.  I glanced around and  in another neighbour’s back yard, across the road, was a very large raccoon.  He gave me lots of time to take pictures.

fused applique raccoon


This fused applique was much easier to do than my previous ones as it has fewer pieces. The quilting took a little longer as I outlined the background flowers and partially thread painted some of them, following the details in the fabric.

raccoon - detail

Bandit – detail

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