November 25, 2015

We received about 12cm overnight and now everything’s white, with temperatures starting to drop to around -10C (16F) under strong winds.

The birds are in the branches of the large Red Maple just beyond our big front window–at the four hanging feeders and suet cakes.  We get mostly goldfinches and house finches, chickadees, juncos, nuthatches, flickers, clark’s nutcrackers, pine siskins, ring-necked doves, occasional pileated and downy woodpeckers, grosbeaks, stellar’s jays, magpies, ravens, white-crowned sparrows, and when it gets really cold the sweetly-blushing redpolls come down from the Arctic (but not likely until January or so).

Occasionally we see a Northern Pygmy Owl which swoops in on the dining lot, lighting on a branch like a handful of fluff with alarming eyes and causes the rest to take off like an explosion. They are one of a few daylight-hunting owls, and for two or three days following, the feeders remain untouched, the memory of that fist-sized, feathered-danger keeping everyone away.

In honour of the occasion — the advent of real Winter — a wintry watercolour, not unlike what the countryside looks like presently.  The subject no doubt wishes the wind were less than it is….


….but imagine the pleasures of fireplace and toddies once he gets back.

It’s an old painting–6 years–and approximately 8″ x 10″ on my favoured Arches Aquarelle Hot Press 140# paper.  It took approximately 30 years to finally discover the right paper, having gone through all the choices of surface, weight, paper-maker (brand), and so on.  Were it to be done again, the figure would be altered some, as there’s something anatomically odd about it.

9 Responses to “….snow”

  1. Lucky you. No snow on the horizon in my part of the world. Enjoy.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. …thank you Barry Coombs!


  3. Nice atmosphere and story.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. …Sharon, ‘party of birds’ is precisely how it seems! They are a chirping mass, bumping each other off perches in order to get to the seed, little arguments erupting. Thank you for coming by and making me smile.


  5. ….Andrew, there are probably a grand majority who agree with you. I adore the snow as a painter and a Canadian and truly truly hope this is not another anomaly winter with little snow and warm breezes. It caused us a level 5 drought last year. Oh bring it. Bring it!


  6. ….Barry, when we first moved here, I thought the prevalence of boots and cowboy gear a little much–but knowing now how they still have huge ranches all through here, with annual cattle drives, bringing the cows back from their summer grasslands–well, I’ve changed my tune. I’m one of the true greenhorns, and happy to remain so–romantic or not, it’s not for me.


  7. I love pictures of snow. I don’t like actual snow, but pictures are great. 😉

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Your party of birds must be so amazing to watch and eavesdrop on all of their
    chatter. Your painting is wonderful!

    Liked by 1 person

  9. Absolutely peaceful cowboy.

    Liked by 1 person

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