Birds As Art

I love to photograph birds.  I don’t like birds as pets.  I had a Cockatiel once named Priscilla (Miss Pris), and she was a holy terror.  And I am not a bird watcher per se.  I can’t just watch birds for hours through a pair of binoculars.  And I can’t identify birds for squat—I almost always rely on my bird friends:  Doris, Tim, Jeff and Cherie for proper identification. But that doesn’t mean that I don’t admire their sublime beauty, grace and drama.  Because I most certainly do.

Back in my artiste days, one of my favorite mediums was watercolor wash with a pen & ink overlay.  I loved the simplicity and grace the pen & ink overlay provided over the soft watercolor wash.  The pen & ink lines gave the painting ‘just enough’ clarity to take it out of the realm of abstract.  I still appreciate a well-executed watercolor painting with a finely rendered pen & ink sketch overlayed.

One of my favorite birds over at Parque Ecologico del Poniente is the resident Green Heron.  I got some good captures early this morning, and have been playing around with painting conversions all afternoon.  I really like the original digital photographic images but, as mentioned so many times before, they just don’t sell commercially.  Everyone seems to want paintings.  So we photographers are almost forced into converting some of our appropriate images to paintings.  This isn’t entirely bad, it does give me an opportunity to further explore my creative side and enhance my computer graphic arts skills. To that end I present two recent offerings, both rendered in one of my favorite artistic styles:  Watercolor wash with Pen & Ink overlay.


Green Heron – Watercolor Wash with Pen & Ink overlay

(Click Here)


Green Heron – Watercolor Wash with Pen & Ink overlay

(Click Here)

Note:  Click on individual image to enlarge, and click on (Click Here) for purchasing information, printing and mounting options.  My Merida customers can contact me directly for special pricing and delivery information at Stephen.Dennstedt@YMail.Com.


4 responses to “Birds As Art

  1. I love watercolors and there is something about the pen & ink overlay that makes this work beautifully for my taste. Can I ask what photo editing software you are using Steve?

  2. Hola Doris, on most of my painting conversions (whether Classic Oil Painting or Watercolor Sketch or others) I use Corel Painter Essentials 4. I like the result, and often use it in conjunction with Photoshop Elements 10 to get the ‘perfect’ result (for me). The customers seem to like it too, these conversions make up the bulk of my retail business. I wish that the original images sold better (because usually I prefer them), but as mentioned before I sell about 9/1 (9 paintings for every digital photo). Buenas noches, Steve

  3. You made me laugh about not knowing how to use your own blog. 🙂 It’s interesting that it is a Corel product. I love Corel’s Paint Shop Pro but I don’t have this “watercolor pen and ink overlay” feature (or at least can’t find it). Thanks for the info. I hope these two latest “paintings” will sell!

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