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#206 Marquesan Kingfisher

Critically Endangered

Most Kingfishers are more flashy than these ones are. They are a beautiful blue though, and have a little cream patch on their back. They used to be on at least 2 Marquesas Islands (of French Polynesia), but are thought to be extinct on all but Tahuata now. They are threatened by introduced/invasive species along with habitat loss, what seems to be the plight of most of the animals I have painted. At the time of the last survey, there was thought to be only about 350 of them.

They mostly eat insects and lizards, so I don't know how much serious diving they do. I am always trying to come up with a different way to pose animals to keep you from getting bored. Kingfishers are known for their diving, so I figured I might as well take advantage of that to add variety. Because of the size I can't have much detail showing if I do the whole bird in a painting, especially when they are flying and I fit the wings into the painting. This is a workaround, and I'm ok with it. I used 7 different colours to get that blue on the wings, and was pleasantly pleased to see that one of the blues was called kingfisher blue. Some of my pencils don't have names, I also used blue #120. I have several brands of watercolour pencils, most I've bought individually. Honestly, I could get rid of some o the older ones I have, I don't use them as much, but would still like to have some other colours. On the background I always use at least 3 colours. I want them to all be different, never exactly the same as another painting and never a flat colour. I don't feel like that really translates into the photographs, but is more noticeable in real life.

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