Arlene Powers Bird Art and Discussion Site

Eagle Owl

Eagle Owl

So many projects…..so little time….we recently visited Bearizona, watched the flight show, and got a photograph of this beauty(Eurasian Eagle Owl) who is the subject of the current WIP. There should be an update soon, as the background is in, but I have to find a few spare moments to get some current pictures.

Those of you on Facebook probably saw photos of the Feathered Friends Festival at the Gilbert Riparian institute. For those of you who did not catch it, here is a photo of a couple of the celebrity parrots who attended the event. A good time was had by all!

Celebrity Parrots

Celebrity Parrots

Then it was on to “Wishes For Wildlife”, the annual Liberty Wildlife fundraiser. It was a fabulous event, ending the night with a Great Horned Owl being released. The owl flew like a champ, never looking back, and we all wiped a little tear from our eye and sighed, thinking, “This is what makes it all worth it!”

The next event, which was also chronicled on Facebook was the lunar eclipse and “Blood Moon”, which involved staying up into the wee hours of the morning with camera on tripod, remote switch in hand, and LOTS of caffeine on hand. It was definitely worth being physically trashed for a couple of days after and trying to catch up on all that lost sleep. Weeeeellllll…..see for yourself…here is my favorite from that night.

Blood Moon

Blood Moon

There are supposed to be three “Blood Moons” over the next 18 months, so I may get a lot of practice staying up ’til the wee hours of the morning with the company of the camera. It is interesting being surrounded by all the snoring while gazing upon such a dramatic scene. The parrots were producing some beak grinding noises and I think I even heard some cat purring in all that cacaphony.

Several spring projects are underway, but I think they will be good for a blog all of their own, so more about those in a future post!!!

This weekend, my son and daughter get to care for the zoo here, while hubby and I take a little time out for photos. As an artist I prefer to use my own photos for reference material, so we are heading to Southern Arizona to see what birds we can find with our cameras. I am hoping for nesting birds and babies, but who knows what we will find!!!!!

Happy Easter, hope you are able to take some time out for photos!

Bobcat

Bobcat

It was a normal Saturday….Ok, as normal as they get at this zoo, LOL! George was outside washing the car and taking care of the yard, the cats were all up to their usual catnaps and tricks, and the parrots….well…..were up their usual NOISY tricks when the phone rang. It was one of our Rescue and Transport volunteers, who was bringing an injured hawk here for triage and further transport to Liberty Wildlife. Our plans were all put on hold while we waited for the patient. The hawk arrived with a broken wing, apparently shot. Fluids were administered, a temporary wrap done, then another kind volunteer transported the beautiful Red Tailed Hawk on to Liberty Wildlife, where she is recouping nicely. It is wonderful that these folks will give up a part of their day off to transport an injured being over 100 miles to get medical attention… make that 200 round trip. A great big THANK YOU goes out to all of the R&T volunteers who drive so many miles to rescue wildlife!!!!

Here Kitty, Kitty...

Here Kitty, Kitty…

Ripley , the African Grey has been visiting, so we have had a regular plethora of  parrot vocalizations…..luckily, I was not painting a bird while Ripley visited, so we did not have any strikes from the bird models or court cases involving wage negotiations. I think Ripley is negotiating with his Parront for more out of cage time……but there are no spoiled birds in this house, so you did not hear that from me!

SO as you can see, I got the Bobcat background in and now you are going to get a TWO FER!!! Yes, I finished the painting today and Candy is telling me to step away from the painting, LOL! So here it is, hope you enjoy…..just be glad you are not a mouse!

Here Kitty, Kitty....

Here Kitty, Kitty….

Here is the progress on “Here Kitty, Kitty…”, it amazes me what a difference it makes when the eyes are in. Since I love to save them for last, sometimes, the painting just demands that the eyes go in. Maybe it is because it is a cat, LOL, they are pretty demanding! How would you like to be a little mouse about now…..No….don’t think I would either with this one stalking me!

One of our cats, Rusty,  was adopted from the local humane society, and was an outdoor cat when we got him. He demands to go out, but he is in confinement during baby bird season, so is not really happy with that. I am SURE some of my favorite knick knacks are going to be broken, but whatever it takes to get the baby birds out of the nests safely, LOL!  We all have to make sacrifices from time to time. Of course at this point, they have all been broken in previous years, so I am sure Rusty will figure out some other way to show his displeasure! Those orange kitties are so intelligent and full of personality!

The parrots are demanding lunch, so bye for now! Ok, Loki, I am coming, No Charlie, just because Joey Bird and Paco get junk food, does not mean you are getting it…what do you mean you are celebrity parrots too?!?!?!?! Rusty, please stop whining….no you cannot go out now?!?!??!?!? What do you mean I can trust you??!?!??!? ARGH!!!!

'Too' Rare

“A Rare ‘Too”

OK, you guys…….where is my keeper? AM needing one about now, LOL! I thought this one was done, took it to the printer…..THEN just happened to see the blog and went OMG, the right side of the body and wings below the branch are not done! So called the printer and said, “Stop the presses, it is not done!!!” Luckily caught them in time, got this one back and finished it. Even Candy is saying to step away from the painting now.

Had a wonderful Saturday at Dana Park, painting outside Fuchsia. Got to meet a lot of new folks, get one painting done, and enjoy the beautiful Arizona weather. Also started another painting of a bobcat from photos we took the previous week at Bearizona. Ok, you can see it IF you promise not to let me take another unfinished painting to the printer! That means you need to pay attention! What!?!??!?!? I need to pay attention, how can you even suggest that!?!?!?!  Guess you did not read the blog about my lost mind…..of all the things I have lost it is the thing I miss the most! Oh yes, where was I…..posting the “Kitty” stalking me from under a log."Kitty"

BTW, I have to tell you, I have the best husband ever! Our anniversary was March 5, celebrating 31 years of marriage, and Hubby had to work OT because they are installing a new computer system. He had to be there over the weekend and until 10PM on our anniversary. So as you can probably figure out, I spent the day feeling bad that he had to work and yes, feeling a little bit of self pity. Since I have to get up early on Thursdays to go to Liberty Wildlife, I went to bed early, only to be awakened at 10 PM. It was Hubby with an anniversary gift. Well, as you can probably imagine, that woke me up in a hurry. Gift! Gift! Yeah! SO not only did he get me a NEW Canon EOS7D camera body, he got a 32 GIG SD card and an EXTRA battery! Talk about EXCITED! So now I have moved up in the camera world, and probably just have to take another photography class, LOL! Off to photo I go!

Step away from the paper!

Step away from the painting!

Nothing like the Oscars to see how the “Rich and Famous” live… The gowns were gorgeous and it looked to me like plastic surgery gone amok! Wonder how far the skin can stretch – check out the aging Hollywood stars….. Hey, not me, I earned every gray hair and wrinkle, LOL! It is hard to imagine not being able to laugh and smile because your skin might pop. AND those are character lines NOT wrinkles! Signs of a life lived to the full! Loki, my Blue and Gold Macaw slavedriver, thinks everyone should have white wrinkled skin on their faces, among Macaws, it is a sign of beauty! Charlie the Hahn’s Macaw agrees, but now the conures are not up with that…they prefer white wrinkled skin around the eyes. A lovely eye ring is a sign of beauty to them. Tinkerbelle the parrotlet, says “the color Blue” is beautiful to her.

AND the winner is….YOU….. my dear blog reader, you get to see the finished painting! Hang on Loki, I am finishing up my blog, you want what……OK Charlie, I am coming….yes Sunny….Ok Tink……Um just a minute Birdie…..

Red Vented Cockatoo

Red Vented Cockatoo

Yeah! We had rain in Arizona yesterday! A little bit of hail too, but we survived one of our two or three rainfalls this year. We didn’t even melt….though some of my friends refused to get out of the car fearing they would melt…..just DID not happen. LOL, we still don’t quite know what to do when it rains here. Most Arizonans think rain is the signal to go out and DRIVE. Doesn’t matter where, just get out there and fill up those streets with traffic, so that anyone who really needs to get somewhere can NOT do so! Also we seem to think it is time to shop. We had to go run a couple of errands, and after finally realizing that the rain was not going to stop, we went to the grocery store….I think everyone in Arizona was in that store! SO while waiting to go to the store, I got some more work done on the Red Vented Cockatoo. For those of you who don’t have parrots, a lot of parrot people call cockatoos, “Toos”, I probably have told you that since I did the “Too” Much painting as a WIP on this blog, but you know I forget things, so you will have to deal with some repetition! Oh yes, I forget things, so you will have to deal with some repetition.

BTW, how are you guys liking the background? This one has been rattling around in my head for a while, so thought to try it out with this painting. Comments are appreciated. If I forget to get back to you right away, don’t worry, I will eventually remember to check for comments!

SO since the RV “Too” is native to the Philippines, I need to go research native trees of the Philippines to get ideas for the branch. See ya soon with the final!

A few weeks of having parrots in my house convinced me of the following human/animal relationships: Dogs have “friends”, cats have “staff”and parrots have “slaves”. Some of my friends thought I was getting paranoid because I told them that parrots were getting on our computers when we were not home and that they really run the world.  AHA!!! I now have confirmation. Joey Bird(a celebrity Blue and Gold Macaw) let it slip on her Facebook page. She has made several comments regarding the superior intelligence of parrots, BUT now she has gone far enough that I have been able to put the puzzle pieces together. https://www.facebook.com/joeybirdy  If you will check out our conversation under “How did the NSA hack our e-mails” you can see how it went. At this point, I am not revealing the name of my parrot (caught in the act of ruling the world from a computer) because I do not want her to get in trouble with the “Parrots Rule The World Organization”. But as a concerned human, you should really know what your flock is up to!RVWIP2

Speaking of Flocks, my flock has been after me to finish this painting. It gets a little difficult completing a watercolor when brushes get chewed up, paper gets turned into nesting material, and you just can’t find a pencil with any wood left on it……but they tell me that it is the price you pay for being part of a parrot flock! Here is the latest update on the Red Vented Cockatoo! Why do I feel like I am talking to the tail??

WIP#2

WIP#2

Today, I was lost in thought……. must be related to the forgetfulness thing, LOL! Anyway, just started thinking about the saying “he is a half a bubble off”, and suddenly realized…I are one. Yup, like when you are young, you feel young, and don’t get it when old people say they are a young person trapped in an old body…. Then one day, you wake up old, and get it…  you are one. Well, I woke up today and realized that I am a half a bubble off from the rest of the world and finally realized it…. but I have to say it is a good thing when you are here. The rest of the world just doesn’t quite get you, BUT….hey it is OK. It means you are creative, march to the tune of your own drummer, and pretty much don’t get a lot of what is going on in the world. And that can be a really good thing. It allows you to have a sense of humor about yourself and be OK with being different. But not too different…just a half a bubble off, LOL! It is nice when you find things that allow you to be like the rest of the world too! I finally found a Starbucks drink that I like since I don’t drink coffee…. now I can meet my friends at Starbucks, have a drink that doesn’t have a thousand calories. Of course that would not be possible without Starbucks cooperation in finally coming up with a drink which uses stevia to offset those high fructose sugar calories! SO there must be someone else out there who doesn’t like coffee and can’t drink a truckload of sugar, LOL! That is what keeps me from being a whole bubble off.

SO what do bubbles and Red Vented Cockatoos have in common? I don’t know, but needed something to get back to the subject of the “Work in Progress”.  Am loving working on the negative painting. Also love finding the color in a white bird. The joy and challenge of painting.

Here is the latest! Enjoy!

Sketch

Sketch

Or is it just me? Sometimes it feels like it, but there are so many sayings about getting older, that I have to have SOME company out there. I would show you what I am working on ….IF I could find it! Seems like I spend half of my life looking for stuff I have “LOST”. The other half of the time, I am trying to remember what I came into the room to do. By the time I backtrack all of my steps and do all of the stuff that I forget to do before getting there, I have even forgotten that I forgot……….hmmmmm……yup…..Ok, what am I forgetting???? Oh yes, I just found my drawing. A GREAT BIG and I mean BIG “Thank you” goes out to Dr. Todd Driggers. He let it casually drop that he had a Red Vented Cockatoo in his office… Of course as much as I love to paint endangered species, I started jumping up and down, saying, can I come see it, pretty please, pretty please? His office staff graciously accommodated us(well I HAD to take a friend, after all how many times do you get to see a Red Vented Cockatoo?) and let us go crazy taking photos. Now that I am caught up from Kickstarter and my commissions, thought I would take the time to try this little beauty. Oh, almost forgot to put the photo in!

Now if I could just figure out which side is left, and which side is right, we would be in business. Oh well, I would just probably forget anyway!

Somehow it became 2014………Time flew by so fast over the Holiday Season, and guess who got caught up and let the BLOGGING slide…….just a little! The Audubon show went great, and I received two commissions from the Kickstarter project, plus another commission which I will talk about later! Add getting ready for a show, with Holidays, and commissions – you get BUSY, BUSY, BUSY!! SO I apologize for letting things slide here and resolve to do better this year!!!

SO you get a lot of Catch Up today. For the Audubon show, I decided to do a lot of new stuff. First, I came up with Christmas ornaments made with my bird art…..then wooden Keepsake boxes….and jewelry/gift bags or sachet bags……you guessed it! Made with the bird art….. Here are a couple of photos……. A few sold at the show, but they were not the great hit that I was hoping for. So there were quite a few left over. I took some time to photograph everything and put them on Etsy. My first time on Etsy and the ornaments sold really well. SO they kept me VERY busy until a few weeks after Christmas. Most of the products were native birds….then my parrot friends started asking for parrot products.

Sooooooooo….once again I got busy and started producing parrot stuff. Took it to the AAS Bird Mart to sell this weekend, and the sales were slow, so now, I have to start up the camera, and get this stuff listed on Etsy to see if there is a Jewelry Bagmarket for it, or if I should just give it up for now and just do the native birds right before Christmas next year. If you would like to check it out:     https://www.etsy.com/shop/ArlenePowersArt   I will be adding lots of parrot stuff over the next few days, LOL!

During all of this madness, I was contacted by a wonderful woman who supports the Oasis Bird Sanctuary. Her Amazon, Cysco, died last year, she has missed her so much and wanted to get a painting done. As I talked to her and read her letter, I was very touched by her love for Cysco. Each day that I worked on the painting, I would read the letter talking about how Cysco would talk and sing, sometimes even doing a little dance. She talked about how Cysco would snuggle under her hair. It would touch my heart, and I hope that that feeling ran through my brushes and infused themselves in the painting.  This was a very special commission and I hope this painting is able to help her feel Cysco’s love for her every day.

A very special friend of mine had a parakeet, Perky, who also recently died. She commissioned me to do a painting of Perky, which I just completed and will share here too.

Hopefully this will be a wonderful year for all of you……..Best wishes and Blessings! Hope you feel the wind beneath your wings!

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