Sketching Nature

By Karen Simons

When I asked my father what the differences between a red kite and a buzzard were, I might have known that he would set about providing an illustration as only he can. Opening the post to find two wonderful little sketches was particularly poignant, as his eyesight is now failing and he is a full-time carer for my mother.

Having a passion for painting combined with a real interest in the natural world means that Dad has taken great pleasure over the years in presenting us with little gifts.

One memorable painting was when I needed to promote Gripe Water and a cute, rather chubby carp with bubbles was produced.

IMG_0792.jpegI also have a lot of owl paintings, as owls are a favourite of mine. This barn owl in night flight is a great reminder of how graceful and silent they can be on the wing.

IMG_0801.jpegThen on my parents' first visit to the Lake District, I took them to Buttermere. We walked around the lake on a fine day and Dad sketched Haystacks. Haystacks was Wainwright's favourite fell, and it is where the famous hiker's ashes are scattered.

IMG_1075.jpegWhich brings me to the latest two paintings to answer my question on the distinction between kites and buzzards. I think they illustrate quite nicely the shape, flight and resting variations of these two fantastic birds of prey.

IMG_1359 (2).jpegIMG_1361 (2).jpeg

Originally published 19/06/20

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