Thursday, January 29, 2015

Day 29 Rainbow Lorikeet

Rainbow Lorikeet 6" square
Rembrandt pastels on Uart 400 sanded pastel paper

Photo reference from Reference Image Library by RubyRedDog2, This bird was one of two photographed in a zoo but I was familiar with Rainbow Lorikeets from some photos years ago by a friend in Australia. I loved those birds. They are insanely colored and very friendly, even wild ones become semi-tame when fed as she used to feed them corn off her back porch. An entire wild flock of them came out for her when she brought them food. Some birds are just sociable like that.

I've seen one photo of an Australian bloke with about nine or ten of them perching on him all friendly, they're really good natured and sweet as your normal little pet budgerigars. I had a budgie as a kid but the Rainbow Lorikeets are even brighter. The little green budgies are almost camouflaged in a tropical forest but these flying jewels are easy to see by any creature that likes fruits and flowers. Gorgeous birds. Can't keep a bird now because my cat is afraid of birds, but I do have some fond memories.

Ari got beaten up by a sparrow when he was only two years old. He didn't realize he was a natural predator to sparrows. The hysterical sparrow did, it landed right in front of him on a shelf in the closet without seeing him. Looked up, spazzed out and flew right up at him beating his poor nose with its wings in dire peril for its life. Ari kept leaning back farther and farther, eyes wide with terror vaguely waving a paw at this mad homicidal flying thing, then made himself all round and fluffed up when it gained enough altitude to bolt out of there.

My daughter, whose cat skills far outstrip my poor indoor cat's, caught the sparrow gently with a scarf and brought it to the open kitchen window to let it out. Poor Ari went off bird watching for months, but finally came to understand that the dangerous creatures can't get through a solid window. So he likes bird watching again but will not go near one without a barrier!

He'll catch mice, but birds are right out of it. None of them are food anyway, food comes in crunchy pellets in bags and I bring it to him. He likes proper cat food, city cats' food, the good low-grain kind. Even wet food is too close to human food for his tastes. As an urban cat with a job taking care of his human, he expects urban services like food processing and the delivery of choice morsels in shiny bags. Gets excited on new-bag day and knows who it's for, but hunting for himself is not something he's ever considered. He's a well paid professional therapy cat and that's how he likes it. Weather doesn't appeal to him either. Climate control and food delivery is a cat's natural habitat, with cushions and things to claw and catnip carrots.

Did a second sketch for the day using Pan Pastels Colorless Blender on most of the page under the sky to see if it'd lighten the colors I put over it. It did beautifully, I had to layer a couple more times to get the darks in. The bottom where the land is didn't get that treatment for comparison.

Storm Sketch, pan pastels on paper
8 1/2" x 11"

The colorless blender is another useful tool. I'm glad it was included in my set of mediums, now that I know what I can do with it. What it didn't do was lighten it right off the sponge if I dabbed in the medium then the color. It will spread out color more than just letting it wear off the sponge and putting it under an area will dilute color going into it to make a soft blended effect.

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