Saturday, April 4, 2015

Thar she blows!

Terry and I took a walk along the beach in Eden Australia to go bird watching. We were looking for a trail that cut off into the woods. Her birding book said this was a great spot to see local birds. We had seen Goffins Cockatoos and other parrots right at the apartment at Eagle Heights. I looked out at the ocean and spotted a column of mist. It was a whale, actually a mother and child. They were no more than 100 yards off shore. Excited, Terry got out her binoculars to get a closer look. It was a cold and very breezy day. After I took a quick look through the binoculars, I found a tree that cut the wind a bit.

I knew Terry was in her zone, when whale watching, so I did a quick sketch. We guessed that the mother must have been teaching the child how to feed in the bay's relatively calm waters.  In town, the siren sounded, announcing that whales had been sighted. We were proud that we had spotted the pair before the experts. We had visited a spotting station manned by a volunteer on top of a cliff. He keeps track of all the nautical traffic that enters and leaves the bay. It was raining when we were there, and he was nice enough to invite us up into the tower to look at the vista. To pass the time, he scanned the ocean horizon for whales. He claimed that he could spot whale blows from miles away. He would see one and then hand me his binoculars to look. When I looked I wouldn't see a thing. Spotting these two whales so close to shore therefor was quite rewarding. Whales don't make great models however. They submerge and stay hidden under water far too long.

Prints are available for each sketch for $250 and many originals can be purchased for $400. White museum grade shadow box frames are $100 more. You can e-mail Thor at

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