Tuesday, September 09, 2008

Painted Feathers

Soon after I wrote yesterday's post, I misplaced it. Then, several things happened: I bought two books and I found my notes.

In his Twice Weekly Letter to Artists on August 13, 2008, Robert Genn wrote about his friendship with the bird artist, James Fenwick Lansdowne. Feeling a little "flighty" after sharing my morning with the birds, I was curious about a man who painted them all his life and who was Robert's life-long friend. I followed a link to Fen's book and ordered it from a used book store. Then while I was checking sources for the book, I remembered a bird book I had seen in the Morse Museum in Orlando. There had simply been no more room for goodies in my luggage, so I looked for it as well. Yes, there is was, a small book with SOUNDS! I ordered it from Amazon and have loved being able to hear the calls which match my backyard birds. Who knew such a thing was possible?

For me, Lansdowne's book had been a bargain. The book is filled with excellent paintings and text for more than 150 birds, but the thrill for me is that each one has a second plate with Lansdowne's preliminary sketches. It is two books in one -- a 10 pound jewel; certainly not just a handy-dandy field guide. So, when the large box came from The Book Man, I was sure there must be a mistake. Then, peeking from under the edge of the address label, I saw my name written on the box in pencil. No mistake! It was packed just for me! It felt like a present.

My thanks to Robert for sharing his friend with me and for leading me to two additions to my library which add to my knowledge, understanding and appreciation of Painted Feathers.

BushStrokes (c) AAB

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