Showing posts from August, 2020

Abert's Squirrel - Give and Take

Abert's Squirrel Some years I barely see them at all but this summer the Abert’s Squirrel has been unusually conspicuous. They have allowed me to document, through photography, their delightful behavior.  The younger ones are especially curious and playful as they scurry down within arm’s length, taunting me to come closer. If I resist the dare, they continue to close the gap but if I make the slightest twitch, they rocket back to the tree trunk. Exhibiting no fear of heights, the mature adults perch safely on tree limbs high above the forest floor. Early mornings are spent on the ground cautiously collecting pinecones for breakfast. The large, bushy tail and long ear tufts are the distinctive features of this endearing creature. Compared to the rowdy, little red squirrel, who thinks it owns the forest, the Abert's is quite charming. A story about the simple life of a squirrel may seem tedious but we can learn much from its interesting and complex partnership with the p

Forest Bison - Buffalo Calves

Forest Bison An enduring symbol of the Great Plains, the American Bison was driven to the brink of extinction during Westward Expansion. After a modest recovery, they can now be found in a woodland that adorns Colorado’s Front Range foothills. The mountain herd roams through a labyrinth of sharp slopes, draws, gulches and ravines that comprise Genesee Park. There is lots of activity at the forest’s edge where this year’s spirited younglings kick, buck, run and play from dawn until dusk. Born in May, the precocious devils are born into the world big and agile. The whole congregation is pretty protective and the cows collectively take care of the calves for about a year. They are reddish-orange at birth but their coloring gradually deepens in concert with the development of their fierce independence. On this warm summer evening, the different individuals engage in various behaviors such as resting, grazing and rock climbing. The easy-going adults move efficiently through the timb

Blue Bergen Peak - Colored Pencil Drawing

"Blue Bergen Peak" Colored Pencil Below a blue Bergen Peak, the late winter landscape is a clash of complementary colors, changing seasons and converging perspectives. The spirited mood is heightened by stylized shapes, gradual shading and the application of dense pigment. Burning under a bright sun, the fiery field in the foreground blazes across the picture plane from crimson red to Spanish orange. The confusion of excessive detail has succumbed to a smooth gradient of analogous colors. A stubborn remnant from a recent storm, a drift of deep snow lingers in the shadows of a troublesome gulch. Patches of still more snow are scattered across the vermillion grassland that recedes into the distance. A remarkable pine tree explodes into the composition from the right, dwarfing the other elements during its desperate call for attention. It’s vibrant foliage is an organic swirl of light and shadow that is splayed out into the air. The sky is broken into two tiers of differ