|Oh, You Nut ... hatch |
Watercolor on canvas
10 x 8"
This picture is of a white breasted nuthatch hanging from a pine limb at the Lancaster County Central Park. I love watching these natural acrobats zip up and down, and around and around a tree. They're easily distinguished from other small birds because they hang upside down as they quickly circumnavigate the tree to unearth bugs underneath the bark. I think this behavior of acrobatically arching away from the tree is their way of getting a general look around.
|Shuts Enviromental Library|
Lancaster County Central Park
I looked over what people said they liked and thought would make interesting paintings. I also considered comments they offered. A couple of people liked the pictures of the nuthatch, but when looking at it, I agreed with one comment that said the background was dull. If you look at the photo of the nuthatch below, you'll see what I mean. The colors are dull and their values too close to that of the bird to be as eye catching as I wanted.
|Original of nuthatch|
I quickly realized that a logical alternative background would be one located within the Lancaster County Central Park where this nuthatch shot was actually taken.
I chose the long view of the park's environmental library (pictured above) as the new background because it was interesting, but also distant enough to remain secondary to the nuthatch in the painting. If you notice, I chose to paint building and its surroundings in softer focus, and with paler hues than the original to keep viewers focused on the bird. I also slightly altered where the little evergreen branch was in the foreground, and placed my signature in a way that visually linked the tree limb and the little branch. In so doing, I provided a visual path down the limb, along my signature, up the branch to the nuthatch.
I'd welcome any comments or suggestions about this -- or future work. If you want to look into purchasing this piece, go to my gallery page on Dailypaintworks.com