36" x 72" acrylic on canvas
One evening in the Serengeti, Birgit and I and our guide stayed out till after sunset watching a couple of lions. The landscape was dark but the sky was still glowing gold when we pulled away to drive back to camp. A flock of white storks was coming in to a long, shallow slough for a final drink and perhaps feed before flying to the trees for the night.
Their busy, varied shapes made interesting patterns against the gleaming water. As I thought about the image for months, the picture of the elegant Japanese screens with gold leaf backgrounds and graceful crane foregrounds kept coming to me. I have always enjoyed the use of gold leaf in those pieces as well as in early Christian icons. It is a bit risky combining the gold leaf with a realistic image but I think that it is worth the try.