Tuesday, April 22, 2014

I was stunned by the beauty and variety of butterflies during the trip. I could easily spend the whole 4 weeks simply with sketching them. Here's a sketch of 2 related species, done by a small spring along the track:












Here's a photo of the left one, accompanied by a less colourful, but still amazing species. It landed only briefly, so I could take only this poor photo:


















This was probably the most beautiful of them all, but was very mobile, sat down only very briefly, immediately hiding its upperwing, so this blurry photo is a flight shot:


Sunday, April 20, 2014

I've painted some plates for the new edition of the Birds of Papua New Guinea field guide. The author, Thane Pratt, and the project leader, Allen Allison kindly invited me to the expedition on the Kokoda Trail.
 I had to leave the team one week earlier to catch my flight. Here's a photo of Thane, holding my present for him. I've made a sketch of his favourite bird of the trip, the Chestnut-shouldered Goshawk.

















We have seen this species during the first week of our trip. I couldn't find any photos of it on the internet, so this must be a really rarely photographed species. Here's my photo: 

Saturday, April 19, 2014

 I've returned from a 1 month study trip in Papua New Guinea yesterday. I walked on the Kokoda Trail with an expedition organized by the American Bishop Museum and The Papua New Guinea National Museum.


In the next weeks I'll post my sketches, photos, stories from the trip.

Safe birdwatching in Port Moresby:





















A selection of my field sketches while packing for the return journey:





Tuesday, May 21, 2013

I've never seen Sandplovers before, luckily both species was quite common.
I had chance to sketch the Lesser from close distance:
















The best spot was at a small river:

Sunday, May 19, 2013

We stayed in Yangkou fishing village. Each day we visited the tidal zone at high tide. We scanned and sketched the roosting flocks.

Grey Plover, Dunlin and Bar-tailed Godwit:





















The whole area is under  threat from constant development. More and more of the tidal zone is reclaimed by building huge seawalls. My friend, Robert Vaughan sketching next to a windmill being constructed:

Friday, May 17, 2013

I've returned from China yesterday. I had a 2 weeks study trip in the Shanghai area with fellow Irish artist, Robert Vaughan. 2 of my other friends, Ferenc Dömsödi and Yann Muzika joined us for a few days. Our main target was to see Spoon-billed Sandpipers. The quest was tough, we had to search a huge, 6 kms wide, 10-20 kms long tidal mudflat. We had the great help of Menxiu Tong from China Wild Tours on the first days, who showed us our first Spoonies.

Yann Muzika, Robert Vaughan and me in our pretty mud-walking trousers:













At high tide the birds were roosting on an artificial pond, and could be scanned from a close distance. The only problem was, that they were all sleeping, and when you don't see the characteristic spoony bill, it's impossible to pick the target from the thousands of Red-necked Stints. Give it a try! There's a Spoon-billed Sandpiper sleeping on this photo:










Our sightings of Spoon-billed Sandpiers were not so long, so I don't have field sketches of them, only ones done from memory and my photos and video footage. Here's one:










Keep an eye on my blog in the coming days, I'll put updates from the trip (some nice SBSP photos also).

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

I've been workign on bird illustrations for a long time, that's why the silence on my blog. I have some originals from this work for sale. Chcek them out on my other blog:
http://kokayillus.blogspot.hu/2012/11/the-following-original-bird.html

Here's a sample, European Roller: