she’s on 14×17″ heavy vellum Bristol, all watercolors, ink, and colored pencil, sealed with a matte uv protectant. this took me eleven hours to create-from the first rough sketch in pencil in my sketchpad, the rough tracing, three times i traced and changed angles and details. then the tonal study, the under painting with grey and tan ink…and the layers of grey and black…will the way through the layers off pencil in color, and burnishing that…then plucking up little details in the important areas of the piece, adding black edges and white. .,
an alkonost is a bird which brings a warning in its song. their voices are hypnotic, entrancing, but dark. harpies are the dark envy and greed for love that women have deep inside, the rage and the longing we can feel. these two creatures are the same on,a deeper level. the warning of the alkonost is that here, in this woman, you have love and kindness; the warning is not to take our for granted. if you reject that, you will see the envy, jealousy, and anger of the harpy.
there are several other bird women in myth, and the more i find to read about the more I’m drawn to paint them. they fit well with my other myth obsession of mermaids, which can also be dark and cruel, as selkies and the like.
i think there will be more of these ladies coming onto my canvas soon.