Great Blue Heron by Brad Sneed

I’ve long admired these majestic birds, though always from afar, until one day I froze while passing by a window facing the backyard. Standing in our pond (this is a decorative hot tub-sized pond) was a Great Blue Heron! He was there to poach a goldfish or two, I suppose, but must’ve sensed or seen me, for he launched and was gone. The encounter, though brief, made an impression!

Prints of this bird are for sale in my Etsy Shop.

Barn Swallow Pattern by Brad Sneed

It’s been an exceptionally wet summer here in the middle of America. Lots of rain means lots of puddles which means lots of mosquitos which means there is food aplenty for critters that enjoy a mosquito meal. One of those mosquito-eating critters is the lovely Barn Swallow. Sadly, these birds don’t live in my neighborhood, but they were plentiful at my rural childhood home. They nested in the rafters and under the eves of the barn and outbuildings. There was a family that returned year after year to nest above a window on our house. By summer’s end, my family shared the homestead with at least 30 swallows! Those warm August evening skies were filled with careening fork-tailed birds gorging on mosquitos and other flying insects. That memory inspired this illustration.