Sunday, February 6, 2011

Study of a Sedge Wren in the High Meadow

Painting 110 - Sedge Wren in the High Meadow
Watercolor, 12x16 Arches Cold Pressed 140 lb Paper

You can't help but be held captive when watching this little bird. He sings and dives and then flies for a short burst...then dives again, then sings again just to let you know he's there, all the while making sure he stays well hidden among the tall grasses and stalks of meadow flowers! The first time I saw this fellow I definitely was riding a birding high. My adrenalin shot up so fast (I'm sure you know that birdie feeling!), and I was so excited. We are on the eastern-most range of this bird, which means we don't get to see him very often. If you look on our Cincinnati Bird List he's a "EEEE," which of course means he's hard to find; and "may not be present at all at this time in some years, but has occurred often enough to form a pattern." I was lucky enough to find him twice. Once on August 2, 2009 (post is here) and again on August 7, 2009. I got a few photos from both visits, but they were not great, so I decided to bring him to life with watercolor. During this summer and early fall I watched and listened for him every time I was in the High Meadow at VOA Park, but he never returned, which is predictable because that's his nomadic little modus operandi...

p.s. While painting this little guy I warmed the colors in his plumage up just a bit because he holds a warm spot in my heart (and that's how I see him in my mind's eye). He's a little more faded in reality (you can see that in the photos I posted here).

24 comments:

Betsy from Tennessee said...

Love the Sedge Wren, Kelly... Reminds me a little of our cute little Carolina Wren--but I believe that the Sedge Wren is more colorful...

Thanks for sharing... Great painting.
Hugs,
Betsy

Kelly said...

...Thanks, Betsy...He's smaller than a Carolina with a spikier tail, but not really more colorful (I just painted him that way because I wanted him to have a warm feeling about him).

Tammie Lee said...

Kelly,
Your painting is lovely
but also it is quite realistic, I feel as though I am looking at a wonderful photograph!

holdingmoments said...

Beautiful painting Kelly.

Nicole MacP said...

Gorgeous! Really like this one!

Larry said...

Super painting of the Sedge Wren Kelly. You are so lucky to find this bird out there!

The photos of his August 2009 visit are marvelous too. Love that spiky tail! Whenever I hear a Wren sing it picks me up.

Elaine said...

Nice!

Roy said...

This is lovely Kelly. A perfect eye, which is never easy to achieve.

Warren Baker said...

Lovely little bird Kelly. Maybe you'll catch up with him this summer :-)

forestal said...

wonderful painting. Never seen a sedge - maybe someday.

dan

Jayne said...

I like him all warmed up Kelly! Too sweet. :c)

Montanagirl said...

Kelly, that's really pretty. I don't believe I have ever seen one of these. But I did have a Varied Thrush show up in my yard. He's very striking looking. I'll post photos.

Laure Ferlita said...

Love this! I also love that you've painted with emotion (warming him up) rather than going for a factual image.

There's something about a wren with those jaunty little tails flicking around!! Well done, Kelly!

Out on the prairie said...

I am seeing a few purple wrens so I know spring is near.

Kathy A. Johnson said...

So sweet...and I love his soft-looking feathers. Beautiful painting.

Chris said...

Magnificent once again. I know I repeat myself, but that's simply true!

grammie g said...

Hi Kelly ..another just lovely painting...yeah, so you jazzed him up a bit..it's all in the eye of the beholder !! ; }}

Hilke Breder said...

Beautiful watercolor, Kelly! You really made him come alive.

freebird said...

This is just terrific!

Toni said...

How exciting for you Kelly. Every time I see a new bird or one on the fringe of its territory I get all warm inside also. Beautiful sketch!

ShySongbird said...

What a delightful painting Kelly, you really are very talented! Such a pretty little bird too.

I don't see our little Wren very often, it manages to stay well camouflaged most of the time and won't stay still long to have its photo taken :)

hip-chick said...

I love this little guy. You are very talented. I wish I had that kind of talent.

Johnny Nutcase said...

so beautiful. I really love all of your art!

Kelly said...

Tammie...thank you! I really like this one too for the softness...

Keith...thank you! :-)

Nicole...thank you...he's special for me too.

Larry...thanks! I only saw him the two times. I doubt I'll ever see him again, but you never know! I always look...(I love their calls too.)

thanks, Elaine!

Roy...thank you. I always try hard on the eye...if you don't get it, you don't get the bird.

Warren...thanks! I hope. I would be in 7th Heaven!

Dan...thanks...I think we need to head further out west to see them.

Jayne...thank you! That's the good thing about painting...if you want something warmer, make it warmer! :-)

Mona...thanks! Cool...I've never seen a Varied Thrush. I'll have to head over.

Thanks, Laure!! I know what you mean about those tails...they just warm my heart!

Steve....I've never seen a purple wren (I've never heard of one either...I need to get a western birds book)! Very cool...

Thanks, Kathy! It's one of my favorite because of the soft feathers.

Thanks, Chris! You're so nice...

Grammie...thanks! Jazzed up is better than the opposite, right? :-)

Thank you, Hilke!! Now if I can only see one alive and in person again! :-)

Thanks, Timaree!!!

Toni...thank you. I know...I don't get to see that many new ones around here, so I was so happy.

Songbird...thank you! will he come out for mealworms? Our wrens will practically do summersaults for them!

Chicky...thank you!!! :-)

...thanks, Nutcase ;-) Birds are so sweet and lovely they practically paint themselves...