Barn swallow

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Description:

This is the Barn swallow, Hirundo rustica.

I adore these birds, they migrate to Britain every spring; I always see the first one arrive on the exact same day every year.

I wanted to illustrate the swallow in flight in a way that allowed me to explore the full richness of the … (read more)

This is the Barn swallow, Hirundo rustica.

I adore these birds, they migrate to Britain every spring; I always see the first one arrive on the exact same day every year.

I wanted to illustrate the swallow in flight in a way that allowed me to explore the full richness of the glossy blue feathers, so chose a viewpoint from above. I love the brick red area on the throat, too. Mixing the colour to capture this hue was tough.

I worked from a specimen, a dead swallow someone had found and handed on to me. It's always sad when animals end up in my freezer after being hit by cars; but the sense of wonder at seeing the beauty of this bird is a privilege.

Thinking about how this tiny bird can migrate to Africa and back, every year moves me. I hope some of my awe has got into the illustration.


Additional Details:
  • 1935 x 2171 px, JPEG (1.7 MB)
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Ξ 0.5
($171.83)