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September 2013

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Swans a-Sitting...

...well, they weren't swimming, because the lake was frozen, but it was delightful seeing these big birds!  Trumpeter swans were thought extinct in the first part of the 20th century, but they're making a comeback--there are an estimated 1000 birds now...


Trumpeter Swans

They're huge--25-30 pounds, wiith a 7 to 8-foot wingspan. Some of them have rusty or orangish heads--that's because the feathers get stained when they feed in iron-rich water or mud.

I didn't get to hear them trumpeting--just grumbling because I was too close!  As you can see below, I really didn't get close enough to take a really good picture, though.




My "studio" is usually pretty simple--the front seat of the Jeep or our truck, Rosie.  It's a bit awkward, but it's OUT there...and warmer in the Jeep than it was outdoors, right around freezing...
Photo, Jeep Studio

Comments

How lovely!
Thank you, I had a wonderful time...

(Anonymous)

type of journal

Kate, which journal are you using to do the swan drawings. Love them. My journal's paper isn't strong enough to do similar wash paintings on. Would like the brand, please. betsyangene.aol.com

Re: type of journal

Oh dear, sorry, Betsy...it's not a brand, it's handmade by my friend Roz Stendahl. This one has Winsor & Newton hot press 90 lb. paper in it.

I usually make my own, usually with a combination of Strathmore 400 CP, Fabriano CP and HP, and maybe some toned papers...
It was! when the weather's a bit more dependable, maybe we can have a sketchcrawl out there...
No, but I am going to MISS you!! We've got to have one or two before you go! (Alligators would be fun to draw, though...)
I figured that.<:-P
I was recently in Calif., driving on Hwy 20 in the northern part of the state. I came across these fields that were under water, and saw hundreds and hundreds of trumpeters. I was flabbergasted. We see them up here (Alaska) in the spring/summer/fall. But usually no more than 8 to 10 at a time, and most of the time just a mated pair and maybe some babies.

Now I know where they spend the winter.