What could be more suitable for May than a portrait of roe deer fawns under a hawthorn, or May hedge? This painting was inspired by coming across, or rather my old lurcher Emmylou did, a tiny roe deer fawn under a similar hedge on the Goss Moor near Blackacre, an area where there are many roe deer these days. I see fawns here most years once they are up and running with their parents, and on occasion twins as portrayed here.
Once, in the same area, my dogs disturbed a family group of seven or eight that were sheltering during a hot summer’s day in a large gorse thicket. They dispersed at speed in all directions, completely bemusing my dogs and frightening the life out of me, as they seemed to explode from cover and disappear with a flash of the white markings on their rumps in the sunlight.
Roe deer are a real success story as far as Cornwall is concerned. Not so long ago, they were almost unheard of in the Duchy, but now they are the most common large mammal I see when out and about in our countryside. They certainly are an attractive addition to our local fauna, especially the fawns with their beautiful spotted baby coats; these provide excellent camouflage when among the grasses and hedgerow foliage. The adults are a rich red-gold during the summer months, turning to chocolate brown during the winter when the rump patch becomes whiter, larger and more noticeable.
Our field edges and verges are looking beautiful now, with all the primary colours in abundance everywhere: fresh green foliage, bluebells, red campion and the brilliant yellows of bird’s-foot trefoil, as included here in this month’s painting.
To see more of Dick’s wildlife art or to purchase prints or paintings that have appeared here, call 01637 880606 or visit www.theartofdicktwinney.com and www.wildlifeartforcollectors.co.uk
This month you can win a signed print of Under The Hawthorn. T&C: No cash alternative. By entering you agree that Local World and the competition provider may contact you with information and offers. You can unsubscribe from these mailing lists at any time.
Closing date: May 31, 2015
Competition code: DICK TWINNEY MAY 2015