Tuesday, July 28, 2015

Another Killdeer Painting

Killdeer and Chick. Watercolor Painting by Ken Januski.

I'm still hoping to do another large watercolor and sumi brush pen painting over the next few days but there was something that kept nagging me about the young Killdeer that I saw along the Manayunk Canal. last week. So finally I broke down and did this small 7x10 watercolor of one adult and one of the young. It is very closely based on some photos that I took.

As I was doing this I was also listening to some music by Igor Stravinsky and reading about him. Though I'm not an expert, not even  a pseudo-expert, nor even an aficianado of classical music I think it's safe to say that he was the most revolutionary 'classical' composer of the 20th century and the most influential. Everything I hear by him sounds fresh.

When I think about most wildlife art, or for that matter art period, it often seems of another era, perhaps reminiscent of baroque music, perhaps romantic 19th century music, or in the case of fine art, stuck in an endless loop around Marcel Duchamp's 'Urinal' of about 100 years ago. There is not much that seems as fresh as Stravinsky.

I don't know the answer to this, nor do I know if it needs an answer. I still love music by Handel and Bach, to name just a few older composers. It is thrilling to listen to today even if it doesn't seem timely. The same is true of the art of Piero della Francesca, Rembrandt, Velasquez to name just a few older artists. It's hard to criticize contemporary art that emulates people like that.

I only mention this because I think the watercolor above is more an homage to much older work than anything else. Much of my other work tries to achieve the freshness of Stravinsky, though I think it rarely does. Still it is a worthy goal.

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