Wednesday, February 9, 2011

A Study of a Black-bellied Plover

I loved watching this Black-bellied Plover probe the sand looking for food. More often than not he would spot something and run to pick it up, but sometimes he would dig into the sand to find something to eat. I saw this guy on Longboat Key in Florida last March. He was foraging with a small flock of Willets. He was mostly on his own, but he would move with the flock, so he seemed to be a part of it. Since it was March, he was still in his non-breeding plumage. You can tell I've warmed his colors up a bit in this painting too (just like I did with the Sedge Wren). He's really a bit blander...a lighter brown/gray. (For the post with the reference photo I used, click here.) This was a fun bird to paint. I enjoyed stylizing the feathers on his back and adding in the sand.

Painting 111 - Black-bellied Plover Digging in the Sand
Watercolor, 12x16 Arches Cold Pressed 140 lb Paper

Sketch of a Black-bellied Plover
I sketched him while sitting in the car waiting for Matty to get out of school (as usual). It was a quick sketch to help me get a handle on his shape. I didn't go into much detail.

p.s. This is the first bird in the 100 Paintings Challenge that Rick has flipped for. He wants a print for his office! Cool...

28 comments:

DeanO said...

Very nice study and beautiful picture

Elaine said...

Very cool that Rick wants this one in his office. I can see why--it's fantastic!

Bob Bushell said...

Beautiful painting that you made.

Chris said...

Wow marvelous Kelly. The sketch is as beautiful as the painting!

Jayne said...

Love this one Kelly! Gorgeous!

Roy said...

Both brilliant Kelly. You captured the legs and feet on the watercolour superbly, which are always difficult to get right.

grammie g said...

Hi Kelly...nice in both sketch and painting!!
Love the feathered pattern on his back very real looking !!

holdingmoments said...

An excellent painting Kelly.

Betsy from Tennessee said...

Beautiful, Kelly... I love both of them but that B&W really caught my eye... Thanks so much for sharing such beauty...
Hugs,
Betsy

Roy said...

**sigh** I get homesick looking at this. Blackbellies, Golden Plovers, Willets, Dunlins... I've spent many a lovely day following these guys and their kin around back in Newport. Alas, they don't live here.

Montanagirl said...

Love it. Your talent will be well-served in Rick's office!

Fleetwood Birder said...

Excellent Kelly. Grey (as we call them over here) Ploveres are one of my favourite birds.

HollyM said...

I love your bird watercolors. You mentioned sketching in the car. do you do it from memory or from your photos?

Janice K said...

Love your feather detail!

Gary Keimig said...

great Plover art.
Love that Creeper photo. we have a few of them from time to time and enjoy the show they put on walking their way up a cottonwood

Dave said...

I could tell it was a Black-bellied Plover by it's butt...really.

Andy Wilson said...

I always enjoy your artistry.

Kerri said...

Your talent is amazing!
This is Outstanding!

Hilke Breder said...

It's a beautiful study, Kelly. Great job detailing the feathers, particularly using water color.

Frank said...

Excellent work Kelly. Actually I think you have transformed it into looking more like our Golden Plover!

BTW I'd love a copy of the pencil sketch.

Robin Robinson said...

Your talent blows me away. I love the plover study

Kelly said...

Dean...thank you!

Elaine...He always likes the paintings, but his eyes really lit up with this one. That was cool...thanks!

Bob...thank you!

Chris...thanks...I'm really enjoying doing the pencil sketches before painting the watercolor. I have so many more sketches already completed and waiting in the wings! I just finished some really cute Golden-crowned Kinglet sketches...

Jayne...thank you very much!

Roy...I spent a lot of time studying those feet. With all the shading, they are very complex! Thank you!

Grammie...thank you...I'm doing another Black-bellied Plover tonight. Hope I can finish him...it was fun painting his feathers too!

Thanks, Keith! :-)

Thank you, Betsy!!! Hugs back...

Roy...I bet you do...I remember all those shorebird shots....

Mona....thank you!!

Fleetwood...I read about that. Grey Plover certainly makes more sense for the "off season!" The black belly only shows with breeding plumage... Thank you!

Holly...I print out a bunch of ref folders and put them in a folder, which I put in my sketching bag. That way, I always have something inspirational to draw from. Lots of time i draw from memory, but since January I've been drawing from my photographs...although the print-outs are horrible and lack a lot of detail, so I create from memory what I can't see.

Thanks, Janice

Gary...thank you!! About 3 years ago I had a pair of creepers in the backyard, but usually they skip by us!

Dave...I bet you could...with all the Birding you do "from behind!" Danke...

Hilke...Danke, vielmals!

Frank...it definitely has that warm, golden plover color! I'll send you a copy of the sketch...thanks!

Your'e so nice, Robin. Thank you!

Susan W. said...

Perfect pose for that species, and very pleasing to contemplate. I can understand his wanting one!

Kelly said...

...thanks, Susan!

Pam Johnson Brickell said...

I'm in love!

Kelly said...

Thanks, Pam!

Vickie said...

Lovely, lovely study!

Kelly said...

...thanks, Vickie!