More on Great Grey Owls


    After watching (and videoing! - a previous post) a Great Grey Owl hunting this weekend in Yellowstone, I painted the Great Grey Owl in the archives of the Yellowstone Heritage and Research today...

    Great Grey Owl study 9" x12" Oil on Arches Oil Paper

    I painted it with a very 'light touch' to give the feeling of feathers without painting 'every hair'... Notice the nuances of greys... A lot of different greys on a Great Grey Owl :)

    The beginning of my owl painting... I wanted to be sure to have cooler shadows (you can see the blue gray color I started with on the chest) that would set off the yellows of the eyes well.

    To learn a little more about Great Grey Owls,

    here are a few facts...

    Great Grey Owls are the tallest North American owl. Mostly fluff, weighing only 2 to 3 pounds, they will consume up to a third of their body weight daily. A large but silent in flight, their wingspan can be up to 60 inches!

    "Usually nesting in abandoned hawk and eagle nests or on tree stumps, great gray owls are devoted parents. When prey is scarce, females will starve themselves to maximize food for their chicks, losing up to a third of their own body weight. Their sacrifices are rewarded with remarkably high breeding success rates. Breeding pairs in North America successfully fledge 70-80 percent of their young."(... from the Nature Conservancy website.)


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    Shirl Ireland, Artist

    Elk River Art, Lodge & Studio

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