Watercolor painting of shorebirds by Janet Tarjan Erl.

Shorebird Ensemble

Medium: Watercolor, Image Size: 17.25″h x 23.5″w, 2016.

My husband and I were beach strolling at Morro Bay, California when we saw hundreds of shorebirds strolling and hunting along the surf and having a feast. I was so impressed with the magnificence, beauty, elegance, and grace of the Long -billed Curlews and Marbled Godwits, and the peppy little Western Sandpipers darting in and about at light speed, so I created this painting to capture a fitting impression of that day and those birds. My husband and I spent hours ambling along the beach alongside these awesome birds. They were comfortable with us being close to them and rewarded us with their behaviors, feeding habits, poses, etc. We must have taken over five hundred photographs of them.

For this purely transparent watercolor painting I used many different photos as references for lighting, body shape, pose, etc…, I had to study dozens of my photos to get better feather detail information because my photos weren’t descriptive enough to actually know what I was looking at, especially in shadow areas, and those Godwit and Curlew feathers were very complex.

I was very grateful to those birds for generously sharing their magnificence with us, and I hope the painting will inspire others to appreciate their beauty too.

Original is sold.

Additional images of artwork, matting, or framing.

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