As always, I enjoy getting inspiration from the every-day, the taken-for-granted, the mundane. Although I do not take our feather allies for granted, many people do. Many feel they are a nuisance, they are dirty or they carry diseases. As always, there are two sides to every story.
The other side of the story is that birds are messengers of Mother Earth, a connection between the heavens and our physical world. There are those that are amazed at their ability for flight and migration, or simply those who are in awe of their beautiful and varied voices. Birds have always played prominent roles in folklore and children’s rhymes, as well as religious symbolism.
We like this side of the story better.
We feed them year-round. We mix together a special mixture of seeds. We make sure their bird baths are clean and filled. And we are saddened when we find one lifeless because of flying into a window or meeting up with the neighbor’s cat.
For these paintings, I chose three species that are very popular in our yard. I never get tired of seeing them. Blue Jays literally look like someone painted a mosaic on their wings, the vibrant red of cardinals is breathtaking in both summer and winter, and the bright orange of a male oriole is impossible not to admire. And although I add a bit of abstraction to my interpretations, I still hope I have done justice to these important messengers; celebrating their beauty, uniqueness and wisdom.