Any regular readers of this blog – if there are any – may recognise this scene, which is based on a photograph used in one of my previous blogs (Natural Places: Ang Ka Nature Trail – Doi Inthanon). I have heard artists refer to photographs as being ‘reference materials’ (!) – but I make no bones about the fact that I copy my photographs – or perhaps I interpret them?; you decide! For comparison, here is the original photograph which I used for the background of the painting.
Ang Ka Nature trail, Doi Inthanon (2)
The birds themselves – they are supposed to be Chestnut-capped Laughing thrushes (Garrulax mitratus) – are also based on photographs I took at this scene. So I take the photos and try to assemble them into a sort of montage, in an attempt to recreate the experience for myself. I like the process of painting (in watercolours and gouache) although I tend to make it up as I go along! I am largely self-taught and try to learn from every painting that I do. One day I will be a proper painter (I hope!). Anyway, I enjoy the application of paint and it’s also a good way of using ones photographs in a creative way. I like to paint scenes which mean something to me. This little nature trail on the top of Thailand’s highest mountain, Doi Inthanon, is always a teat to visit, with different birds appearing on different visits. These laughing thrushes are quite easy to see at this site – the Ang Ka Nature Study – but on this occasion (a visit in December 2013) they were making such a lot of noise, and interacting with each other so intensely that them seemed to be oblivious of the fact that I was standing right in front of them! It was a delightful and memorable experience. I hope I can go back there next winter!