• Great Crested Grebes

January and a New Year


Walking out by the lakes at the Linford lake reserve yields a number of waterbirds throughout the year including beautiful Great Crested Grebes, I used a mixture of my normal main colours to make the dark siennas, the umbres and the deep purples of this bird which also reflects the colours in the lake underneath the nest. The whole reflection and refraction moved with the water as a slight breeze blew. I used my usual watercolour technique of not drawing first but painting straight away to give an immediacy to my subject. Yesterday I was lucky enough to see two Great White Egrets amongst the reed bed and am thinking how best to approach the drawings I managed to complete to finalise the pieces I want to do on these birds. One of the reflections of the GWE was like a strange language of a long rectangle of white interspersed with the deep umbre of the water so I am thinking of producing a watercolour or two with this beautiful image in mind. It was so cold out yesterday that my hands were red (not cold enough for blue yet), with a bitter wind blowing straight across the lake into the hide but I find the whole experience of painting and drawing and watching wildlife so invigorating it's worth the slight discomfort. In a way I was very annoyed with myself for not bringing my paints and just doing some more work whilst the light and the scene in front of me was so perfect.

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Kate Wyatt is a member of the Association of Illustrators (AOI)

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