Seasonal bird – bonus!

Varied Thrush (6″ x 8″) acrylic on Arches paper

I started doing a fun series of birds in December and posted one per day for the “Twelve Days of Christmas” with a short poem from Tom for each. Apparently, I couldn’t quite stop so here is one more.

One day in late December, our yard was visited by dozens of Varied Thrushes. I didn’t grow up with these birds so they are surprising and especially delightful to me. Of course, I needed to paint one to add to my seasonal birds. This piece of paper was a bit bigger than the others so I had even more scope for abstract play in the background.

And here is Tom’s poem!

A variation on a theme of joy
that darts through lambent colours of the wood
beneath the winter sun. A spirit buoyed
by all in life that’s gentle, kind, and good.

image (c) 2020 Hilary Farmer
poem (c) 2021 TJ Radcliffe

Seasonal bird – 10

Chickadee so free (5″ x 6″ acrylic on Arches paper)

I started doing a fun series of birds in December. I plan to post one per day for the “Twelve Days of Christmas” with a short poem from Tom for each. Hope you enjoy!

Upon a Christmas Day a tree
must a tannenbaum to be
and upon its branch I see
that life is good and I am free!

image (c) 2020 Hilary Farmer
poem (c) 2020 TJ Radcliffe

Seasonal bird – 7

Steller’s jay – on the lookout (5″x6″ acrylic on Arches paper)

I started doing a fun series of birds in December. I plan to post one per day for the “Twelve Days of Christmas” with a short poem from Tom for each. Hope you enjoy!
Wishing everyone a healthy and joy-filled New Year! May 2021 be good to all.

I’m looking for a whisky-jack
who said he came from here.
His name was Sam and he was grand…
Oh look! He’s winging near!

image (c) 2020 Hilary Farmer
poem (c) 2020 TJ Radcliffe

Seasonal bird – 6

Chickadee – yomp! (5″x 6″ acrylic on Arches paper)

I started doing a fun series of birds in December. I plan to post one per day for the “Twelve Days of Christmas” with a short poem from Tom for each. Hope you enjoy!

Yomp yomp yomp yomp! Yum!
Fine feast for fast flying friend
of all who feed me!

Image (c) 2020 Hilary Farmer
Poem (c) 2020 TJ Radcliffe

Seasonal bird – 5

Northern Flicker waiting (5″x 6″ acrylic on Arches paper)

I started doing a fun series of birds in December. I plan to post one per day for the “Twelve Days of Christmas” with a short poem from Tom for each. Hope you enjoy!

Waiting in silence
Patient, patient, then in flight!
Swooping through the trees.

Image (c) 2020 Hilary Farmer
Poem (c) 2020 Hilary Farmer

Seasonal bird – 4

Bright Cardinal (5″x 6″ acrylic on Arches paper)

I started doing a fun series of birds in December. I plan to post one per day for the “Twelve Days of Christmas” with a short poem from Tom for each. Hope you enjoy!

Now tell me the truth:
Aren’t I what you’ve waited for?
Bright elegant bird.

Image (c) 2020 Hilary Farmer
Poem (c) 2020 TJ Radcliffe

Bridal flock mandala

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Bridal flock (12″x 12″ oil on board)

Experimental! I have tried doing oil painting mandalas before but this is larger and so I could include more detail …maybe too much detail! There is an obvious floral theme but if you look closer, there are birds all around the outside pointing towards the centre.

Tom’s take on this one inspired the title of the piece.

Birds in camouflage abound
within the bride’s high-flung bouquet
tumbling far above the ground
sent in joy upon its way
toward the waiting hands of all
who stand on toes and reach up tall
to grasp the prize of prizes now,
the talisman that tells them how
their turn is next in love. It bursts
asunder with a flock of birds
that spin in brightly coloured herds
above the crowd now in reverse.
Yet she who’s steadfast, true, and bold
still stands to catch the flower’s hold.

image (c) 2018 Hilary Farmer
poem (c) 2018 TJ Radcliffe

Nectar dreaming mandala

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Nectar Dreaming (9″ x 9″ ink and watercolour)

Have I mentioned it’s been hot here? I continue to have a rather tropical inspiration permeate my work!

Here is a magical poem from Tom …a riff on T.S. Elliot’s “Usk”.

Do not step and break the branch
where snakes slip soft
on forest floor
bright birds dip beaks but not too deep
seeking wisdom
asking more
of ancient mysteries that dwell
down the Amazon
a dell
contains the secret
in grey air
a high safe nest
a serpent’s lair

image (c) 2018 Hilary Farmer
poem (c) 2018 TJ Radcliffe