Sunday, January 03, 2010
This painting was inspired by a great book by John Agnew - "Painting the Secret World of Nature" and the trogon I photographed at the Seattle Zoo. Mr. Agnew does a lot of murals and diorama paintings for museums and zoos. (Give you three guesses what I'd like to do someday...) The book has demonstrations about painting backgrounds and atmosphere to suggest the environment, without painting every little intricate detail - perfect for a recovering hyper-detail painter like me. However, I'm still struggling with adding scientifically accurate elements such as epiphytes and types of leaves found in the rainforest where the white-tailed trogon lives. Sure I can google-image the stuff but I find it so hard to then realistically incorporate those things into a painting. For example, what size would the leaves be in comparison to the bird? (Any artists out there - please leave your thoughts on and experiences with this in the comments section!) Maybe I should just stick to subjects in environments that I have an in-depth familiarity with. *Sigh* But it still felt really good to paint with an old friend.
Hope everyone had a wonderful New Years Eve (I was asleep by 10 pm).