If you would like to see how this painting was created, please read on: First I drew in the entire composition of the birds, foliage and branches. Next I covered that area in masking fluid. Then I did a series of washes in blues, greens and yellows, followed by a treatment with salt. This was done in 3 or 4 layers to create a sense of a full lush forest background.
Next I began painting in the foliage, again in layers of washes. I decided to paint the female first, because I thought she looked easier and more boring. To my surprise, the more I worked on her the more I saw that she was not just grey but also had hues of pink, yellow, lilac and more! One of the most fascinating characteristic of these birds to me is their unique chartreuse-green beaks! (Yes, in spring and summer the really ARE that green!)