Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Drawing - Yellow-Headed Blackbird

Yellow-Headed Blackbird - Graphite on Paper
Copyright 2010, Nicole MacPherson

Yellow-Headed Blackbirds are impressive looking birds!  They are lousy songsters though!  But the males put on wonderful displays, easily compensating for any musical shortcomings.  I've found them to be harder to photograph than the Red-Winged Blackbirds.  Less common in general, and a bit more suspicious of humans.  The Yellows are also more social, often foraging in groups. 

This was my first attempt at a real background.  I found it harder than I expected.  Birds are fun to draw, grass and reeds are not! 

As I've mentioned on this blog before, I don't use different kinds of pencils.  But I think I might have to change that.  Had to go over some parts a LOT to get them dark enough.  This ended up warping the paper.  It was even visible when scanned, and the paper underneath this one has a big, bird-shaped impression on it!  Finished this guy up on the 21st, but he's been sitting beneath heavy stuff since that time, trying to get the paper to flatten! 

Wednesday, October 6, 2010


We've developed a bit of a habit of stopping at this small park on our way up to Hecla.  It's a very well-kept picnic area on the west side of Lake Winnipeg with a great shoreline, scattered trees, and some cool birds!

The ice is still usually visible on the lake into May.  This photo very nicely illustrates the rule of thirds.  I like it because it looks like one of those layers of colored sand doodads. 

Lots of shades of blue and tan on a clear spring day.

A better look at the rocky shore.  I love how the clouds at the horizon look like distant mountains.


Monday, October 4, 2010

Oak Hammock's rocky shores

ok, not really.  I think this is an anti-erosion technique, the marsh cells at Oak Hammock are intensively managed by Ducks Unlimited to provide optimum habitat for as many species as possible.  I never get tired of going there, it seems different each time.  And is particularly beautiful around sunset.

Taken July 27, 2005

Sunday, October 3, 2010

Sunday Sunset

I can never resist a sunset.  Each one is different to me.  They don't need to always be dramatic, I don't usually see the intense reds and purples that pro photographers seem to get.  Filters?   Sounds like dollars to me!

What I like about this one is that most of the color is atmospheric - it's not reflecting off of the clouds in the sky, it's reflecting off of the atmosphere itself.  In other words, the sky itself is pink.  I also like how the tops of the clouds are still bathed in white sunlight.

Taken from highway #3 on August 7, 2005.  I think this was near the wind farms, but am not sure!