"Gator on the Bank"
22" x 28"
Plein Air, Oil on Canvas
copyright by Artist, Brenda Hofreiter
This painting was created at Lake Woodruff Wildlife Refuge outside Deland, FL. It is one of my favorite places to paint. It's dirt roads make it easy to bike along the banks of the marshland and see the wildlife up close. Some of the big attractions for the refuge visitors are it's many large gators that hang out on the banks and its seasonal bird population. This painting shows the marsh in the early spring which is mating season for the alligators. This big guy was just posing for me, sunning on the banks of the marsh grass and I couldn't resist capturing him. I don't do many animals en plein air since most of the marsh inhabitants aren't reliable about sticking around long enough, but this big guy seemed content to just sit there and let me paint him.
I love painting in the spring here in Florida because there are usually some left over fall and winter colors breaking up the greens. You can see the new greens of spring just starting to break though the fall colors. The wading birds are looking for a meal in the shallow water. Do you think the gator is hoping one will wonder over too close and he'll get a meal? He does seem a bit interested to me.