I’m Watching You

The Story Behind the Painting

Having just driven to the top of Australia, Cape York in August 2019 I was on my way back down to Cairns when I stopped off at Hann River Roadhouse.
This was a nice little campsite off the Peninsula Development Rd (81) with plenty of space and some walking tracks. I had been driving all day so I just wanted to set up my tent, make dinner and fall into my sleeping bag.
While I was setting up my tent and cooking equipment I got a rather large visitor stop by, an emu. Also a peacock and a few other birds were wandering around the camp site.

Emu at Hann River Roadhouse

As you can see the emu is a rather large bird standing next to my car, It was also a little unnerving while I was crouched on the ground hammering in tent pegs. I looked up and saw the emu and I could hear a drumming sound coming from its throat.

My Painting Process

Unfortunately this was one of my first gouache painting after I got back into painting after a 23yr pause. As you can see I don’t have any progress shots or pencil sketches.

I had a very limited colour palette as most of my colours had dried up or leaked. I even had to use a water colour pencil for the back of the emu’s eye, that’s why black is not listed on my gouache colour palette.

I started off with a pencil sketch of the emu, then I wanted to paint his amazing eye, which I believe is the main attraction to this painting.
I then worked on the beak and an undercoat of the birds head and neck.

Last I started painting all the hairs and with almost a dry brush I painting in some of the emu’s fuzzy hair which I think gives it most of its amusing character.

This painting seems to be peoples favourite and I’m expecting it to sell rather fast once the open date to my virtual exhibition starts in May 2020.

Gouache Colour Palette

I use Winsor & Newton Gouache but this was not painted on my usual Arches France Watercolour Paper, Cold Pressed. It was a generic brand paper from the art shop in Sydney.

My painting come from my own experiences that I have lived and photographed while traveling. By reading this blog, you as a viewer can now hear The Story Behind the Painting. Where, when, what was happening while I was photographing the wildlife.
If you want more details about my adventures checkout my travel blog website www.ChrisOsborneAdventures.wordpress.com

Enjoy, Chris Osborne

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