Thirty-six hours of rain, and I’m not complaining. First of all, the rain put an end to the Hidden Pines Fire allowing efforts to shift toward clean up and assistance for the families affected. Second, the long, steady rain puts an end (at least temporarily) to the threat of more wildfires. Third, rain and mud disrupted every outdoor plan I had this weekend allowing me to paint all day and all evening all weekend, guilt-free!
I’ve been working on this painting for a few weeks now, and I gave it the finishing touches this weekend.
I started this painting on a beautiful sunny day last Saturday. My granddaughter, Athena was watching and learning all about how to start an oil painting.
I painted this from a photo I took of an Eastern Phoebe perched on fading Poke Weed. The morning was chilly, and this little bird fluffed up to stay warm. This little painting took a couple of hours, start to finish.
When the rain finally stopped around 3 o’clock on Sunday,, I set out to see what the birds were up to. Seems they were all hungry and looking for a meal. Zoom in on these photos, and you will see two Red-bellied Woodpeckers, four Eastern Bluebirds, and two Pine Warblers dining all together on the same dead pine.
I guess a skeletal tree full of bugs is an easy meal—like a drive through when you’re too hungry to grocery shop or the food court at the mall.
Down at the lake, I found an Osprey perched high on a branch, head turning side to side, watching the lake for a quick fish dinner; also, an Eastern Phoebe on a stump hunting for a dragonfly. On my walk I saw 14 species of birds and more than 70 individual birds.
This path to the lake was puddled and sloshy, and the new seed beds looked like little reservoirs. The lake covered the banks again, but was calm and still unlike Memorial Day. The sound of the waterfall on Piney Creek was a soft roar through the woods across the lake.
Back at the house, about nine small birds were perched on the electrical wire. The first few were Eastern Bluebirds and the rest were Chipping Sparrows! The sparrows came in with the first wet cool front, and I hope they are here to stay for the winter.
This guy is always near the house announcing our comings and goings.
I have been painting as much as I can at Little Piney. Here are two more paintings that I’m happy with.