Watercolor on paper. Butterfly Milkweed (Asclepias tuberosa) along with a Large Milkweed Bug (Oncopeltus fasciatus). Butterfly Milkweed is native to New England, but it is rare today. A wonderful open field in East Lyme, Connecticut is home to a small patch of plants, and inspired this painting. The Large Milkweed Bug is also a New England native and is very easy to find in the late summer and early fall.
Baltimore Oriole with Magnolia Blooms
Watercolor on paper. Male Baltimore Orioles (Icterus galbula) are amazingly vibrant in orange and black. Orioles eat insects, fruit, and nectar. This handsome boy was enjoying fresh magnolia (saucer magnolia) blooms. In the fall, they will swarm grape vines with gusto! SOLD private collection.
Watercolor on paper. Mountain Laurel (Kalmia latifolia) are native evergreen shrubs that bloom in late spring to mid-summer. Poisonous to people if ingested, Mountain Laurel prefer partial shade, and groves can be found in the dappled sunlight provided by established forests. The plant that inspired this painting was found in Stafford Springs, Connecticut.
Watercolor on paper. Asian Bittersweet (Vitis labrusca) is a non-native plant, and is listed as an invasive and prohibited species in much of New England. Originally planted as an ornamental and as means of erosion control, these plants spread quickly, choking out native plants. A group of plants in Chesterfield, New Hampshire inspired this painting. SOLD private collection.
Watercolor on paper. Climbing Nightshade (Solanum dulcamara) is a non-native plant which has been listed as an invasive species in several states. The entire plant is poisonous, proving that beauty can be deadly. A specimen in Ellington, Connecticut inspired this painting. SOLD private collection.
White Throated Sparrow
Watercolor on paper. A common wintertime bird, the White-throated Sparrow (Zonotrichia albicollis) can make even the dead of winter a little brighter with its joyful song and bright yellow lores. I have had the pleasure of observing these active birds many times over the last few winters. Sold- private collection.
Watercolor on paper. This handsome little bird posed for me for several minutes on a branch of a wax myrtle in Madison, Connecticut. They are the only warbler able to digest the winter farther north than other warblers. Yellow-rumped Warblers (Setophaga coronata) are more common in the winter months, but can be found year round in Massachusetts.
Foxglove and Fireworks
Portrait of a Killdeer
Acrylic on board. A shorebird that is often found far from water, the Killdeer (Charadrius vociferus) is a gregarious plover. The adults will feign a broken-wing to lead predators away from a nest. This act works well against predators, but does not prevent large animals from trampling the nest. When threatened by a cow or horse in a pasture, they will fluff themselves up, display their tail over their head, and run at the intruder in an attempt to change their direction. SOLD private collection.
Mixed media: watercolor, pencil, acrylic, and marker. Summering in the high Arctic, large flocks of Snow Buntings (Plectrophenax nivalis) make their way into the northern United States to spend the winter in open snow covered fields. This painting portrays non-breeding plumage Snow Buntings are another winter delight for New which is how they would look when they visit New England.
Mixed media: watercolor, pencil, acrylic, and marker. Barn Swallows (Hirundo rustica) are a bird that welcomes human habitation. They nest almost exclusively in man-made structures. Flying just inches above the ground or water, they scoop insects out of the air to take back to the hungry mouths waiting in their mud nests.