Quail hunt landscape. . .

Carolina Snowball  .  oil on linen canvas  .  22"x 28"

Having never painted a "hunting" landscape before, I absolutely loved the challenge of painting this scene - a real life moment captured by a very good photographer who also happens to be the father of the young man in the painting.  As I've said before, nothing really compares when you're painting a "heart" scene.  Whether portrait, landscape or still life, when it touches your client in a meaningful way, well the intention and love that go into the painting are firmly in place before you even begin.  Bringing it to life so that it remains a visual memory for family and friends is your task, your earnest pursuit, with brushes and paint and a spark that allows the painter to feel the moment.  

The quail hunting culture of the Deep South is time-honored right along with quail recipes.  Rich traditions mainly between fathers and sons, uncles, grandfathers, good friends, etc., included hunting - right along side of fishing, football and all kinds of other sports. The heritage of living off the land meant that all were in tune with woods and water. It's important to remember how food was put on the table for all those years. . .in truth, a matter of survival. You had a garden, you raised chickens, you fished and you hunted game to feed your family - America's Thanksgiving celebrations surely began with a hunt.  

What is shot is eaten or given away and accepted with gratitude by those who have little. Hence, the necessity for and preponderance of deep freezers in well known hunting regions of our country. . . 

In thought, accepting the cleanness of hunting - the quick kill, the element of surprise, the purpose to feed and nourish bodies is convincingly more pure, more humane, if you will, than the factory farms and slaughter houses of today.  I believe Native Americans have many thoughts and deep feelings on hunting that give pause. . .respect for the animal is high on the list, rituals abound and great effort is taken towards a humane kill.  It goes without saying that a good hunter is extremely conscious that he is taking a life, as opposed to eating animals without considering the life or spirit of the animal.  

Thanksgiving tables will be filled to brimming this holiday, no doubt, but while heads are bowed and thanks is given, don't forget the animal spirits of your bounty.  Remark upon it in your prayer, impress upon your children that the sacred animal and human oneness is to be held in deep reverence and respect.
We are all living beings.

I am so grateful for those who trust in my ability to honor their family and memories by my brushstrokes.  Thank you. 

Happy Thanksgiving to all. . .




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