This brilliantly-colored kingfisher made for a wonderful subject as it used a post and private sign to pose for the artist, or at least that's how I imagined the composition when first considered the idea. The common kingfisher is a splended bird, quite a character in fact and a real delight to study, sketch and paint, and a bird that often uses a man-made object to observe and eat a meal. Thus the idea was born and "Natures Exemption" was created a painted that hopefully captured this very special moment in time. I love the contasting textures of hard and soft, light and shade to tell a story. The solid post and sign with it's obvious message and the soft textured feathered visitor enjoying a welcome meal oblivious of the warning.
ABOUT THE SPECIES
The Common kingfisher (Alcedo atthis), also known as the Eurasian kingfisher or River kingfisher is a small bird with seven subspecies recognized within it's wide distributional range across Eurasia and North Africa. It's a resident in much of it's range, but does migrate from areas where rivers and water courses freeze in winter. This extemely colorful bird is fairly easy to spot to the enthusiastic birder, but you need to be quite patient to observe one in it's natural environment. It inhabits clear, slow moving streams and rivers, and lakes with well-vegetated banks and frequents scrubs and bushes with overhanging branches close to shallow open water in which to hunt. Highly territorial it requires control of a suitable stretch of river and feeds mainly on small river fish and it's diet also includes aquatic insect such as dragonfly larvae and water beetles. Status wise the kingfishers population is stable and therefore classified by the IUCN red list as "least concern".