A studio for bird study

Tag: wildlife art

Migrating Sharp-shinned Hawk painting on the cover of Golden Gate Raptor Observatory’s Pacific Raptor

by Bryce W. Robinson

I’m privileged to see my painting of a migrating Sharp-shinned Hawk featured on the cover of the Golden Gate Raptor Observatory publication, Pacific Raptor. If you are not aware of the observatory or the work they do, you can find out more at their website –

https://www.parksconservancy.org/…/golden-gate-raptor…

You can also see what is inside this issue of Pacific Raptor here –

https://www.parksconservancy.org/…/PR_41_Final…

Thanks to my good friends Allen Fish and Teresa Ely for the opportunity to share my work with the Golden Gate Raptor community!

American Kestrel Painting – Male and Female

by Bryce W. Robinson

AMKE_Pair

I’ve painted the American Kestrel multiple times, and each is an improvement. But, all I see are the mistakes here. I struggle with being overly critical with myself, but I try to remember that the process and the growth are most important in my work. I learn a lot from each painting, about the birds structure, etc., but also about the process of painting. As I struggle with focusing on my faults, I’m working to stay focused on my growth, while recognizing the mistakes constructively. Hell, this exercise probably translates to everything in life, not just painting birds.

I’m going to make limited prints of this American Kestrel pair, so if you’re a kestrel lover click on the image and purchase a print.

California Gnatcatcher – Polioptila californica

by Bryce W. Robinson

FullSizeRender-1

This month I found myself fortunate to have the opportunity of illustrating a “Coastal” California Gnatcatcher (Polioptila californica californica). I was asked to do an illustration for Sea and Sage Audubon in southern California, and I decided to illustrate the California Gnatcatcher because it is perhaps the most pressing avian conservation issue facing southern California.

A few decades of rapid urban development in southern California’s coastal sage scrub habitat has left California Gnatcatcher’s with shrinking suitable habitat and a fragmented range. These pressures have taken their toll on the United State’s only California Gnatcatcher populations, to a point that in 1993 the gnatcatcher received threatened status.

Today it seems that the California Gnatcatcher’s presence and future in the coastal sage scrub is that of small fragmented populations. In essence, the damage has been done, and efforts now focus on preserving what quality habitat is left and ensuring that the small populations remain.

My choice to illustrate this bird was founded on 1. maintaining awareness for the plight of this incredible bird, 2. supporting a feeling of identity for those that live in the area and invoking the California Gnatcatcher as an important part of that identity, and 3. a reminder that these birds act as a symbol for the broad impacts human development has to the ecosystem, a symbol that goes well beyond single species conservation.

For more information on the history of the conservation effort for this species, and to stay updated on current action visit:

The USFWS’s Environmental Conservation Online System page for the Coastal California Gnatcatcher.