The Ornate hawk-eagle is one of my favorite birds of prey. They can be found in southern Mexico and into central and south America. This particular bird has been on my list to paint for some time. I took some reference photos of the Ornate hawk-eagle at the World Center for Birds of Prey in Boise ID. I used India ink, acrylic washes and some metallic acrylic paint on paper to create this illustration. This will not be my last illustration of this subject.
It has been a while since I’ve pulled out the paints and brushes. It takes a bit of time to get the feeling of the brush and control of ink and paint. Which is why you see two versions of this painting. The goal was to create an artwork to celebrate a volunteer who has been with HawkQuest Inc. for twenty years. This piece was also a chance to memorialize one of their animal ambassadors who passed away this year. A very sweet little Barred owl named Shakespear. You can learn more about HawkQuest here.
These are some of my first wildlife work to use some metallic paints. This provides some nice highlights and luster to the originals that can’t be easily reproduced in prints.