by Lynn S Schwebach
As artists, we enter everything. We try to get into juried shows. We try to get into galleries. We try to sell our artwork online. As bravely creative individuals, we try everything and anything to get our art and our message out into the world.
So when someone contacts YOU, someone tells you that the painting she found on your blog/website is what Thames and Hudson, Australia needs for its upcoming book, you get excited. Let’s say, for illustrative purposes, you get up and dance around the room, and scream so loud that your eyes water—and feel as if they are going to pop right out their sockets.
That’s what happened when Thames and Hudson, Australia e-mailed me one day about including my quirky “cockatoo” ink painting in their upcoming publication titled, “Cockatoo.”
Now picture my cockatoo painting along with 80 other outstanding illustrations/paintings, and you have a delightful book of bird art, and some amazing facts about the longest-living birds on the planet.
I encountered this particular cockatoo on Hamilton Island in Australia. Many of these giant birds perched on my balcony and attempted fly into my hotel room through the sliding doors. I felt the character of these birds through their eyes. This particular cockatoo seemed to tell me that sometimes in life, you have to “drive on the shoulder,” because the road ahead remains unknown, invisible. It was an extremely rainy day, and I understood this analogy intimately because I had been feeling rain on many levels, so I picked up my camera and took pictures of this afternoon’s brief, wet meeting.
When I returned to Colorado, I began painting these birds. For this abstract cockatoo painting, “On the Shoulder,” I used two sheets of Yupo paper: translucent Yupo on which I painted the cockatoo in alcohol inks; and white opaque Yupo that contains the abstract underpainting. The two sheets lay on top of each other to capture the mood and message of this chance encounter, and the complexity of the muted and vibrant colors of Australia.
It’s hard to the find the words to express how I feel about getting included in this art book as I look at all the amazing images done by such talented artists from across the globe. It’s an emotion hard to express, yet it’s apparent, I hope, in my all of the cockatoo paintings.
To see order this book, see the publisher’s website.
I am selling the original painting, matted and framed, on schwebacharts.com. Check it out here.
And, I am selling prints of my “On the Shoulder” cockatoo print, and other prints of cockatoo paintings, on my Etsy site.