Beauty in Na­ture

An­der­son was the Grand Prize win­ner of In­ter­na­tional Artist mag­a­zine’s Chal­lenge No. 107, Wildlife.

American Art Collector - - Award Winner -

Cher An­der­son says her wildlife art­work can be de­scribed as “an in­ter­pre­ta­tion of what I see fil­tered by the emo­tion of the mo­ment.” She paints re­al­is­ti­cally with the aim of ren­der­ing the crea­tures and en­vi­ron­ments as ac­cu­rately as pos­si­ble. She will an­a­lyze her paint­ings by re­view­ing and cor­rect­ing the el­e­ments that are crit­i­cal to the com­po­si­tion.

An­der­son elab­o­rates, “I think it is im­por­tant to rep­re­sent my sub­ject ac­cu­rately in its en­vi­ron­ment. Sea­sons change, plumage, fur and the col­ors sur­round­ing the an­i­mals, and it is very easy to make a mis­take by plac­ing an an­i­mal in the wrong sur­round­ings with the wrong coat for the sea­son. Birds go through plumage changes not only dur­ing the sea­sons, but also at dif­fer­ent stages of their lives. I re­search and study what I will be paint­ing to make sure that doesn’t hap­pen.”

In­spi­ra­tion can strike at any mo­ment for the artist, who re­sides in Ari­zona, so she takes a cam­era with her ev­ery­where. “Some­times the best pho­tos are the least ex­pected,” An­der­son says. She adds, “I find my­self es­pe­cially fas­ci­nated by birds and have painted more birds than any­thing else be­cause they are so unique to each other and in­cred­i­bly beau­ti­ful. They never cease to amaze me.”

Her first wildlife paint­ing was The Hunter, de­pict­ing a pere­grine fal­con, which she cre­ated af­ter a work­shop. “I was in the pres­ence of this ma­jes­tic bird and was able to pho­to­graph him and study him as he perched,” she says. “This species was en­dan­gered due to the use of DDT pes­ti­cides that would cause their egg shells to thin and break while be­ing in­cu­bated. They have made a great re­cov­ery since the pes­ti­cide has been banned from use. It took me six months to com­plete as I painted him feather by feather un­til per­fected. The Hunter has won mul­ti­ple awards in­ter­na­tion­ally and is cur­rently tour­ing with the 2017 Artist for Con­ser­va­tion ex­hibit.”

The desert birds have also been in­spir­ing sub­jects for the artist, in­clud­ing the red-tailed hawk that ap­pears in her paint­ing Fire in the Sky. “Their beauty and majesty as they soar and float above our heads is a re­minder of their free­dom and strength,” she ex­plains. “I wanted to paint this beau­ti­ful rap­tor be­cause of the va­ri­ety of color and hues in their plumage. With the sun shin­ing through its lu­mi­nous feath­ers, auburns, cop­pers, grays, pur­ples and golden tones lit up like a flame of fire against the

1Cher An­der­son works in her stu­dio.2The Hunter, acrylic on board, 18 x 14"

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