"Blue Jay" is an original Maine watercolor painting by Beth Whitney.
This realistic bird illustration features a curious Blue Jay enjoying his perch in a crabapple tree. The variety of blues in his head, body, and tail are wonderful - so much fun to paint! My parents have a wide variety of birds in their garden, so my dad doesn't have to travel far for photographs.
A fun fact is that all of the white you see is paper that I reserved either using masking fluid or negative painting. I only use white guache if I'm desperate, and I painted slowly enough that I was able to avoid it for this. I also used a tiny brush, particularly on his head.
My inspiration for painting this little guy was my pet Blue Jay, Squeaker (I was 5 or 6). He had been abandoned in the nest, so my parents let me bring him inside and raise him by hand. I remember feeding him worms from my dad's cooler. Squeaker lived in the garage for what seemed like a long time, coming and going as he pleased. He was so much fun! Then one day, he got married and flew away.
I decided to keep the original painting, but giclee prints are available in 3 sizes. Order from my shop on Etsy or contact me to purchase.
Watercolor on paper | Private collection