Yellowstone Plein Air: Elk Refuge

ys_heron_uploadThis painting commemorates the only time an animal has sat for an entire painting. I didn’t even paint him in at first. I thought, no way, this guy’s going to be gone in five mintutes. You just wait. But nope! I was painting for nearly an hour and he never moved, never shifted, didn’t so much as ruffle his feathers (okay, maybe he did do that a few times).

Even the Norwegian tourists that spilled out onto the deck with their long range lenses (the elk refuge draws a lot of bird watchers in summer) didn’t phase him.

The sun wasn’t so accommodating. It banked behind the mountain early and left my whole scene in shadow (and me rather chilly). So, both me and the bird packed up and went home after that.

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