42" x 24"
On the final evening of last year's North Carolina spring turkey season, I was hunting solo. I planned to get above a large green field where turkeys had been feeding in the afternoons and make a move on them from above as they headed to roost. But my plan was cut short when I ran across this scene on my way in. A bench near the top of the steep mountainside was holding water and had exploded with a variety of plants and flowers, growing up amidst moss-covered hardwood logs.
It was too good of a scene to pass up, so I laid my shotgun down in favor of my camera and spent a half hour photographing from different angles and soaking in the view. As I walked back to my truck that night after fly-up, I regret I wasn't carrying a longbeard over my shoulder. But in it's place was a camera with an SD card full of great images and the inspiration for a new work of art.
Eight months later, I brought the scene to life in my studio, painting these longbeards and their hens into the scene just as I pictured it in my mind that warm spring day.