If you've read my previous posts, you'll know it's been several years since I put paintbrush to paper. Now that I've committed to a fresh attempt, I'm keen to head in a slightly different direction from the earlier paintings I've included in those posts.
When I reflect on my love of animals as a child, and on my earliest painting efforts in the eighties whose subjects were often animals, it seems quite natural that I should return to them as subjects now. I'd like them to feature in my work in the future, if not as the main subject, then as an incidental part of a landscape study.
While holidaying in the north-west last year, Sandi and I ventured up Mandu Mandu Gorge on foot. With rich red ochre rock walls on either side of us, we were accompanied at various times by a flock of squawking corellas as well as several of the more tuneful butcher birds. As we rested in the shade, Sandi snapped a photo of some butcher birds high up on the gorge wall - presumably they were nesting there. The streaks of mineralisation in the rocks echoed the stark black and white of the birds and the shapes in the rock allowed for an interesting composition which would almost work as an abstract painting, with or without the birds. The cropped image appears below.
I hope it will be informative to track the progress of this painting. It will serve either to document my rebirth as an artist, or as a record of yet another false start!