Michele Clamp Art

Paint Colorful Birds for Fun


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Robin. Michele Clamp. Watercolor 14”x11”

After the stress of completing and submitting a show piece with only hours to go I relaxed with a robin. Actually it was quite stressful. Birds like robins with oval bodies and stumpy beaks can be tricky to paint with character. Half way through it was almost a bust but managed to salvage something in the end.

Gang-Gang Cockatoo

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Gang-Gang Cockatoo. Michele Clamp. Watercolor. 10”x8”.

I really wasn’t sure how this was going to come out. Bushy feathers like this are very easy to overwork but I ended up with a good balance of loose brushwork and detail. Not bad.


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Ostrich. Michele Clamp. Watercolor 14”x11”

I’m trying to keep up with the facebook page Paint Colorful Birds for Fun and this week (week 5) is the ostrich. I tried to keep some life in the darks but keep the white feathers distinct and fluffy. I think it’s pretty much there.


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Avocet. Michele Clamp. Watercolor 14”x11”.


14”x11”/20”x16” matted.

A very muted piece but has a lot of presence.

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Sometimes things just work. I wanted the colors to be muted on this one so the stance of the bird, its markings and reflections stood out. And it all came together. Happy camper.


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Just fancied painting a kingfisher. Tried to get him nice and sploshy.

Bird Day - Quetzal

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Quetzal watercolor. Michele Clamp. Photo reference from https://www.flickr.com/people/31267353@N03/

Bird day today. Need a rest from the cityscapes. Quite a successful quetzal although this was the second go.

First go which wasn’t very satisfying :


Black-Headed Jay

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Black-headed jay. Michele Clamp. Watercolor

t’s been a bit of a struggle recently. The brushes aren’t moving the way I want which is always demoralizing. This one is the best one for a few days.

Spinafex Pigeon

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Spinafex pigeon. Michele Clamp. Watercolor 10”x8”

I don’t usually do preparatory sketches for the birds. Most of the design work can be done just by making a good choice of pose. Something that’s characteristic of the bird but also makes a good shape and pattern of light and dark. This time I thought I’d try something different and start with a rough watercolor sketch=. This is what came out.

Yeah right. I mostly learned what not to do in the final painting but maybe that’s the point?

Anyway - after a rocky start I was very happy with the final painting.

Turkey Day

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Turkey. Michele Clamp. Watercolor 11”x14”

Well not really. It’s kind of in between turkey days right now. I hadn’t tried a turkey before and they’re surprisingly tricky. Really enjoyed this one even though the result is a little scrappy.