Creating One’s Own Vision

For wildlife artists, I believe that there is no replacement for time spent in the field.  Opportunities for viewing wildlife don’t just happen.  We often have to make them happen.  Although there are sometimes wonderful things going on in the outdoors around us, in order to observe, photograph and study animals that don’t live in our immediate areas of the country, we need to get on a plane or climb into a car and go to where they live.  This seems like a no-brainer to me.  But I am amazed at the amount of people who paint wildlife that just don’t see the need in this.   It often shows in their work.

For me, this travel and observation is the best part of the job.  I can honestly say that a day spent with  mountain goats high up in the heavens or watching crocodiles in the Zambezi River are memories that stay with me for a lifetime.  It can be challenging and fun to bring those wonderful moments home within you and then attempt to capture them with paint.

My husband and I were incredibly fortunate to visit the Yukon in the summer of 2008.  I’ve always dreamed of seeing a wild northern place such as this.  And it of course, didn’t disappoint.   I took thousands of photographs of the area’s amazing scenery, and studied some unique animals there as well.   “Lofty Heights” below is the first painting that I have done as a direct result of this memorable trip.