Some of you may recall my recent post of a lilac-breasted roller we spotted in Kenya. If you don’t, refresh your memory. This bird was at the top of my to-see list in Kenya, not despite and in fact because it was so common there. Satisfaction guaranteed. (I also had a second, non-official list, which essentially consisted of the entire Birds of East Africa field guide.)
In addition to the blog post, I also posted the photograph on Project Noah. In case I haven’t fangirled about it before, this site is the best thing ever. (It’s also what got me started on this craziness. In case you can’t tell.) It’s essentially a social media for wildlife spottings. Think Instagram, animal-style. Through it I’ve met so many fellow ‘crazy nature people’ and learned so much about – well, everything. It was a distinct high point for me last year when my spotting of a black rhinoceros received Spotting of the Day, something I’ve been wanting ever since I got started. (Also, on the main page, in the header where all the spottings are featured, click on the fungi icon and scroll a little to the right. You might spot a familiar photograph. STILL NOT OVER IT.) If you love wildlife, and photography, Project Noah is the thing.
I’m not paid by them. Promise.
Anyways, back to the roller. I got a comment on my spotting from Karen Lockyear, a biologist-turned artist, asking if she could paint the photograph, and possibly sell prints of it.
My first reaction: what.
Seriously, I consider my photography to be mediocre at best. I enjoy it, yes, but someone wanting to paint it?
So, yesterday I get an email from Karen with the completed painting. And I’m still in a little shock of how beautiful the thing is.
I MEAN, LOOK AT IT. She has taken my photograph and transformed into something way, way beyond. All things bad about it have disappeared. I do not know this witchcraft.
She hasn’t yet set up her Etsy store, but when that’s up I will definitely link that here. Because. I mean. The above.
So: thank you, Karen. I look forward to seeing more of your work.