Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Dawn Chorus at Potteric.

On May 6th I joined a group of people for the Dawn Chorus Walk at Potteric Carr Nature Reserve. It was a frosty 5am start and a great opportunity to see the reserve in the early morning light.

 We visited Decoy Marsh first where we saw, and heard, the explosive call of Cetti's Warbler in the bushes near the hide, then on over the railway to Childers Wood. It was the first time I had visited this part of the reserve, it was quite beautiful, the early morning sun light filtering through the silver birches and very quiet apart from birdsong.

 Our walk took us through quite a large part of the reserve and we finished up at Cottage Drain Hide where I saw the the family of Greylag Geese, the subject of one of my new paintings.

"Cottage Drain hide Early Morning 6th May"
acrylic in stretched canvas 18"x24"

 After a very welcome and delicious breakfast in Low Ellers Cafe I spent some time in Willow Pool Hide where I saw the subject of my second painting, the Moorhen protecting her young from a Coot.

"Defending the Family"
acrylic on board and over  the flat frame 

The two paintings which resulted from that morning are now on display and  hanging on the wall in the cafe at Low Ellers.

I have a wonderful subject for a third painting from that Dawn Chorus Walk, a pair of Kingfishers made an appearance on the Mother Drain under the bridge and I am presently deciding exactly how to compose it, what view to take - one of the most interesting and important  things about painting for me.

And the Dawn Chorus Walk, well highlights included cuckoo, green woodpecker and bittern, a gentleman from Chesterfield had forty birds on his list.

 Now that Bittern, wouldn't that make a great painting ?


My paintings of Potteric are on display and for sale in Low Ellers Cafe in the Field Centre and are listed here:- 

Thank you for looking in on my blog.

Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Spring Morning at Piper Marsh.

A grey day at Potteric today, no sun, so the colours were rather drab apart from  a glorious clump of bright yellow Marsh Marigolds on the bank of a pool and reflected in the water. Some Hawthorns are in flower, and most of the trees are in leaf in many shades of green, but for me, the biggest difference the lack of sun makes is in the colour of the reeds, all the glorious shades of ochre and gold were missing today.

The cafe was very busy so after a warming drink of hot chocolate I carried on to Piper Marsh Hide. I was hoping to see the family of geese I had photographed last week close by the hide but was out of luck.
I had started a painting of Piper Marsh some weeks ago and although I was quite pleased with the trees in the background I have been unable complete the foreground, however I was in luck today with some good photographs of both geese and herons in action, so, fingers crossed.

Finally, returning across Black Carr Field I noted an interesting moss covered tree stump which has definite possibilities as a subject for painting, so that goes on my 'to do' list !