Thursday, August 27, 2009

Poultry art

Carolyn Guske is painting farm animals, She has beautiful portraits of American Buff Geese, shown here. She also has portraits of cattle and pigs. The portraits are available as Giclee prints, a process of reproducing art on watercolor paper that creates prints virtually indistinguishable from original watercolors. She also reproduces them on notecards. Perfect for me -- I like to delight the people I write to with beautiful cards.

Carolyn has spent the past 30 years as an artist, applying her skills and talent to film animation, excellent training for painting animal portraits. Her native California is the best possible location for that. She's worked on film animation projects ranging from Sponge Bob to Roger Rabbit and The Little Mermaid, as well as one of my favorites, Spirit, the Stallion of Cimarron. In television animation, she's worked on Bambi 2, Woody Woodpecker and Jungle Book 2.
Carolyn brought all that art experience to the farm during a break between projects and began painting the animals she saw there. "I received such personal satisfaction from rediscovering watercolor after a 20 year hiatus that my focus turned," she says. "I intend to paint every rare breed farm animal. Having a subject you are passionate about is paramount."
Her hope is to communicate her impression of the beauty and personality of each animal, such as this Midget White Turkey. By bringing attention to these rare breeds, she hopes to increase appreciation for our agricultural heritage.
She is looking for beautiful animals to paint. She prefers to travel to the farm and take her own photographs, from which she paints the portraits. Contact her at
Some amazing artists have applied their talents to domestic animals over the years. Robert Frost, in his poem about hsi favorite chicken, describes her as "one a Sewell might have painted," referring to Franklane L. Sewell, some of whose paintings are still used by the American Poultry Association to illustrate its Standard of Perfection. The current issue of the Standard is dedicated as a tribute to the artists of black and white portraits, with Arthur O. Schilling leading the list.
Welcome, Carolyn, to the distinguished ranks of poultry artists. I look forward to seeing more of your work and sharing it with friends.

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