Picture Profile: 1101 A Quick Preen by Buttermere (Grey heron, Grey wagtail, Common sandpiper)

1101 A Quick Preen by Buttermere (Grey heron, Grey wagtail, Common sandpiper)

1101 A Quick Preen by Buttermere (Grey heron, Grey wagtail, Common sandpiper)

Artist Code: 1101. Completed January 2011. Original SOLD. Two-thirds life size water colour on Winsor &  Newton 100% cotton rag heavy duty 460 gsm paper, size 565mm x 765mm (22” x 30”). Framed size 40″ x 32″

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Sold to Private collector

Grey Heron, Ardea cinerea; Common Sandpiper, Actitis hypoleucos; Grey Wagtail, Motacilla cinerea.

This painting has gone overseas (well, the English channel actually) and is safely housed somewhere in France!

Whilst stewarding for an exhibition at Banham Zoo for the Natural World Art Group (NWAG), I sent hubby (David) out with the camera to see if he could obtain any interesting resource pictures. He came back with what he called a ‘grey flamingo’. I thought he was joking until I got home and looked at the pictures: it was this heron amongst the pink birds, so quite astonishing! The background setting of his photograph was concrete and chain-link fencing, so I trawled through my resource pictures from the Lake District and found a bit of flotsam, a common sandpiper and a preening grey wagtail on a rocky shore. As well as David’s heron for resource, I also used a striking picture kindly supplied by Sue Smith (with whom I play golf at Bourn Golf Club): to both, a huge thank you. And, during the recent cold spell, my little garden pond was frequented by a young, starving heron; so close-up views through the scope gave me extra insight. The birds in the painting are depicted two-thirds lifesize.

Poem

A QUICK PREEN BY BUTTERMERE
Quietly stalking, wispy grey
Pearcing beak to catch his prey
And down below and unperturbed
A wagtail preens, is not disturbed
But yonder ‘piper looks distressed
‘Who is this large, unwelcome guest?’