View Full Version : Bandit in the Blossoms

04-24-2015, 09:45 AM
Last spring I observed several Cedar Waxwings foraging amongst the blossoms, dieting on the flowering petals. Mount Vision pastels on UArt #800, 11.5" X 16.5". C&C welcome...


04-24-2015, 10:56 AM
I like the composition of foliage around the bird, and the delicate color and light on the flowers! I would suggest pushing a bit more color and darks into corners and areas wherever possible- the far group of leaves might be a good place, and a touch more texture on the bird. Recent 'cat' painting has got me immersed in textures and rich darks-

water girl
04-24-2015, 12:47 PM
This is a beautiful composition, Marcus. I'd like to see some of the edges of the furthest flowers softened a bit so they recede into the background. But, always consider any change before actually lifting your pastels.

04-24-2015, 04:49 PM
Those flowers are gorgeous! The bird's mask makes him look just like a bandit! However, I think he is body looks almost concave, like his chest needs some rounding out. Perhaps, as Ken suggested, some textured feathers would be all you need. Otherwise, this is a really beautiful piece, and I love the composition!

04-25-2015, 07:56 AM
The central blossoms and the leaves are stars of the painting for me. I love how soft the petals look. I also like the background.
The bird has a wonderful crown on his head ;) It makes me smile, so I don't see it as a flaw.
It's a really nice painting.

ural jones
04-25-2015, 09:43 AM
I think this is a really, really nice painting and I would like to suggest only one thing.
I'd like to see the bird become more of the focal point. He is the subject in the title so, I feel the blossoms,
as beautiful as they are, command too much attention. So, my suggestion would be to warm the bird a little with some red coloring.
I think it would be within the male birds description and that would give him the attention he deserves.
Of course, this is only one mans' opinion and this lovely Audubon - like painting is very well done as you have painted it!
(And also, what Blayne said.)


04-27-2015, 10:52 AM

Thanx for all the input. I reworked a few small things. Softened the edges of some of the far petals above, this is kind of tricky since there is not a great deal of depth, probably less than a foot of depth from the photograph. I had a very difficult time getting the background to show up as it does in the original. I suppose the camera is compensating for the whites, making the background darker than actual? The Waxwing is a different kind of challenge as they have a very silky smooth appearance, different from other birds. I did add some texture, but don't think it shows well in the photo? Audubon's waxwings appear a bit heavy in color than what they appear actually, but lighting can change and make the birds a bit darker or lighter. In spring and summer Waxwings appear more silky smooth, in the fall and winter they look more textured to me.

ural jones
04-27-2015, 10:59 AM
Wow, just beautiful and I am so impressed with your light and values and realism!

04-27-2015, 07:01 PM
Wonderful painting.

Comparing it with the photo, the light is more bright on some of the flowers, but standing alone, it seems about perfect to me. :)

04-27-2015, 10:27 PM

04-28-2015, 11:13 PM
Thanx everyone for the helpful suggestions and comments!