Framed 16" x 20" Limited Edition Giclee Print, 2009 (Age 13)
It was the dead of winter and a friend had loaned us the DVDs for the entire BBC series of Planet Earth and Blue Planet that we had missed while living in Russia. We watched them almost every day during lunch for a month, as we were so captivated by them. Before that, my understanding of penguins had come mainly from the movie Happy Feet which, as I discovered from the BBC series, was surprisingly accurate. I became very interested in the March of the Penguins and was amazed at the perseverance of the fathers through the harsh dark stormy season to huddle together protecting their one egg each, as the mothers are off feeding in the ocean. The dads carefully balance the large egg on their feet under their pouches to keep it from freezing in the snow. The group works together taking turns on the outside with backs to the unrelenting 40 mph winds. Through instinct they know how to do this and are determined to persevere, as they were hard-wired for it by their Maker. In this painting I wanted to show the harsh weather conditions by using bold expressive brush strokes, which depict the swirling wind and icy snow.