Art Diaries: Chilean Wildlife

Art Inspired by Nature and the Cosmos

Today I decided to do some quick and loose sketches of Chilean wildlife from my trip. Sketching in watercolour is great fun: it loosens up the wrists and allows you to create a quick impression of what it is your painting.

There were several amazing wildlife spots that we stumbled upon. Of course, if you know anything about South America, you’ll know its biodiversity is…well, diverse. And Chile is no exception. As you travel from North to South, the climate and even the season changes, so it’s no wonder there’s such variety. Who knew you could have guanacos, parrots and penguins all in one country?

blog2Imperial, watercolours

The first sketch is from Punta Arenas (mentioned in my previous post). Upon arrival in this truly charming place, we had a re-fueling breakfast, having got perhaps only one hours’ sleep in 24, then decided to wander around the very chilly town…

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Photo Blog: Wildlife of Chile and Patagonia

Art Inspired by Nature and the Cosmos

Happy Sunday everyone, I’m currently hard at work on some new paintings, taking what I learned in Patagonia and doing my best to transform it onto canvas. Now I’m working on a painting that combines new landscapes with my cosmic nature paintings, and I’m much looking forward to sharing.

In the meantime I’d like to share some photos of the wonderful wildlife I encountered from North to South. I’m thrilled that I was able to see so many completely wild creatures: no bars, no cages, no hand-feeding, roaming free in this harsh wilderness that throws at them some extraordinary challenges. I wonder if they realise how beautiful their home is?

Cormorants and seagulls in Punta Arenas, Patagonia

On the drive into Torres del Paine, there were plenty of guanacos and the hunting caracara.

Cowbirds, thrushes and more enjoying foraging for dusk insects outside our Lago Grey lodge. They were incredibly comfortable…

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Meadowlarks fond of grassland habitats

Our Fine Feathered Friends

Jean-MeadowlarkPhoto by Jean Potter • A rocky outcrop provides a perch for this singing male Eastern meadowlark.

It’s always fun to add another notch to one’s list of birds. Whether you’re a casual lister or a devoted birder, a new species always offers a burst of excitement in the wake of a first-time observation.

Sharon Foster sent me an email recently to share her excitement about a sighting.

“I’m excited to say my daughter and I spotted a meadowlark up on Cross Mountain last week,” Sharon wrote in her email.

Sharon said she hadn’t been able to do a lot of bird watching other than in her yard and nearby places.

“I never thought I was going to see a meadowlark,” she noted. They are fantastic. We were thrilled. He was just sitting on the fence.’

She added that she didn’t have her good zoom camera with her, or else…

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This is why we prune.

Bonsai Iterate

Occasionally I witness a beautiful example of why we do what we do in bonsai. I’d like to share just such an example, highlighted by the plant itself.

Four weeks ago, I cut back this unremarkable boxwood. Perhaps more important than what I did four weeks ago what what I DIDN’T do in the weeks before that. I DIDN’T prune until the new growth had extended and hardened off.

As you may be able to see in the image above, the new growth had extended to several pairs of leaves. Allowing that growth to do its thing and strengthen the plant before cutting, produced the result we are looking for – new branching!

This is how the plant looks today. The branch on the left will be removed at a later date, so the growth was not pruned. What we need to note is that this branch has not pushed…

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