illustration

Owls of the World: Indian Eagle Owl

Bubo bengalensis. Indian Eagle Owl or Rock Eagle Owl. Found from W. Himalayas east to W. Burma, and south through Pakistan and India, but not Sri Lanka. like most owls, they’re reluctant to fly over large open waters. They prefer rocky and rugged landscapes but can also be found in forested areas or near edges of cities.

Bubo bengalensis hunts rats, mice, and also birds, reptiles, frogs, and large insects. They Hunt from a perch or in a low foraging flight. The Indian Eagle Owl’s song is a two-note hoot, the second note is stronger. If upset they make an angry hissing sound.

They nest on the ground or on a rocky outcrop. Laying 2-4 eggs at a time which are incubated by the female for around 35 days.

Thanks for looking at birds with me.

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Owls of the World: Ural Owl

Strix uralensis

The Ural Owl is found across Northern Europe and Northern Asia. And as far east as Japan. Preferring remote old growth forest. They hunt primarily voles but substitute with other small mammals, insects, and birds when vole populations are low. Hunting from perches relying on their incredible hearing, silent wings, and razor sharp talons.

Ural Owls lay up to six eggs per clutch. Nesting in dead trees or even an abandoned Goshawk nest. They are very defensive of their nests, chasing away anything that approaches the entrance. Unless it’s a returning Goshawk in which case they would be in trouble.

4 Ural Owl final TEXT

 

 

 

Falco peregrinus. (Again probably).

I cracked open a can of cola and laid out the paints I would need. As well as several books opened to pages with peregrines on them. To double check the colors I imagined.
I always start these with some idea but a lot of it I figure out on my way through it. Still learning how to best translate from pencil to paint.
f1
When I got to the wings I looked for blue….I found some in my paint box.
f2
The body through me for a loop, and I sat staring at it for a good bit. In the background I could hear the soundtrack of a movie I was half watching. Somebody was laughing.
f3
A glance to the window and I knew where to go. Like driving in the night and checking the map under a streetlight. (I guess now everybody looks at their phone).
I brought back the smallest brush and approached like it was my micron pen. With the precision of a drunk surgeon with a rusty scalpel.
I like paper maps.
falconfinal
Got it sorted well enough.
No simple highway.

Flight path.

A pose I had sketched a lot in October. Here it finally came to life in pen this evening with the help of a visit from a Red-Tailed Hawk on my way home tonight. Inspiration move me brightly…

Penciled in like an appointment I never planned to keep.

Penciled in like an appointment I never planned to keep.

Turns to splintered sunlight on my page.

Turns to splintered sunlight on my page.

Hawks help me get lost in the meadow of my imagination.

Hawks help me get lost in the meadow of my imagination.

No poems, only birds. My classic contradiction.

Sitting at my desk after work tonight. I reckon I could write you a poem, or something of that sort. But I’ll hold onto any words I have in that nature for a day or so. Trying like I do with a pen drawing. Before I begin with the pen work I let the drawing sit in pencil and examine it for a few days. Each time noticing things I hadn’t before.
I like doing that with words too. This helps me find their power or something like that.
 
I finished another large flying hawk. The layout of these drawings is simple but holds lots of texture. I feel good about this approach and would like to now put these birds into other positions in the natural kingdom. No easy task, but tonight’s pencil studies show promise I feel.
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The most recently finished of my 2’x4′ hawks on plywood.

When the last bolt of sunshine hits the mountain…

The other night while I was climbing around under my bed. I found an old cassette tape and against my better judgment I listened to the song that was going through her head, while she tossed and turned and lay awake in bed. The next day we said our goodbyes.
 
I am halfway through my 6th plywood raptor in flight drawing. Adding clear coats to the others to keep them safe from the elements and protect the drawings from when I inevitably drop them all somewhere foolish. If I was a bank robber my nickname would be “Clown-Shoes”
 
I forgot to write the words down when I woke up so they became forgotten.
His always seem to work for me though.
 
“And there’s nothing left to do but count the years
When the strings of my heart start to sever
And stones fall from my eyes instead of tears” -Robert Hunter

To fall down the drawing table’s rabbit hole again.

Eight hours of drawing tiny lines with a Micron pen bought me these branches, bird, and flower
If such a thing could be bought, this would be how.
My time.
My eye sees it finished before the pen touches cold-press.
While I draw the thought of a lost love rolls through my mind like an old covered wagon,
scrub-brush tangled in the wheels, and the image flickers.
I often travel all the way through the image and into some other place right while sitting still pen in hand.
I can see the songs I love to hear in them, and I can hear the places I like to visit.
It doesn’t matter if it’s a drawing of a Red-tail or a Wren, a mountain range or cellular structure.
If I can catch a glimpse of it, I’ll give my all to put it to page.
Sometimes it’s on wing, and sometimes the branches are empty.
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She promised that she’d be right there with me, When I paint my masterpiece.

Plate one

Plate one

plate2

Plate two

I started this blog in November. My first post was the image of the 1st plate of warblers here. I descided after finishing that first plate I would do more, and after pouring over bird guides I narrowed it down to 30 warblers total. Believe me there are more, but I didn’t want to burn myself out drawing so many similar sized birds, nor did I wish to burn out the viewer .

I chose the birds based on name and coloration, then broke them into groups of six, as thats what fits best on the 16×20 cold press board that I use. Many of the proper field guide books break them into groups of like-colors. Which makes sense when you’re trying to identify a bird in the field.  I descided against that as I found it more visually striking to have a variety of colored birds on each page instead of all very similar colors and field identification aid isn’t my goal with this project. That goal instead being to illustrate the beauty of the natural world around us.
plate3

Plate three

I couldn’t resist putting Nashville, Grace’s, and Tennessee togther on the same row.  Something about the poetry I’ve spoke of before.

plate4

Plate four

The Cerulean Warbler was one of my favorites, its not often I get a chance to use so much blue…except for scrub jays, Stellers jays, blue jays, and all three varieties of bluebirds…ok I guess there’s a few.

plate5

Plate five