Dwarf Cypress and Red Shouldered Hawk – Progression
Dwarf Cypress and Red Shouldered Hawk

The pictures in the slideshow will cycle every 3 seconds. To view an individual step in the progression, click “Show Thumbnails”.

One of the main themes of this painting is the similarity of the colors of the Hawk and the Cypress forest.  As a predator it is well camouflaged.   Therefore, I painted the Hawk first so that I could adjust the shadows and colors of the trees with respect to the Hawk.  I tried to strike a balance between several elements.  First, if the hawk’s camouflage is working it shouldn’t stand out too much from the background.  Second, I don’t want the cypress trees to overwhelm the hawk.   Finally, I don’t want the trees to look like nothing but a background for the hawk.  Cypress trees are beautiful in their own right and represent another theme of the painting.

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