Les cigognes

The storks of Alsace used to return every spring from their annual migration to Africa and nest in the trees and chimney stacks of the region. But when it was discovered in the 1980’s that many of them were dying on the journey back (droughts and power lines were the biggest problems), the Alsatians found a way to keep them there permanently. Now many of them nest year-round in the clipped plane trees surrounding L’Orangerie. Apparently in the winter you can really get a good view of the huge nests at the tops of the trees but in the summer they are surrounded by foliage and all you can see are the birds and their babies poking their heads out at the top.

Les Cigognes


9 Comments on “Les cigognes”

  1. John Wright says:

    now that’s a sketch ! …quick, expressive and good use of odd numbers ( 3 trees: 7 birds)


  2. Mary says:

    Hi Shari, I’ve asked what my 14 yr. old grand daughter Julia likes about your drawing…
    She said she likes the way one’s eye travels up the tree and then focusses on the
    birds! We love your use of lines in the three bold trees, too. Think you’ve inspired us to practice some fine liner sketches together!


    • Hi Mary and Julia! I’m so glad you like the storks. This type of linework is unusual for me. I usually do more crosshatching and fewer curvy lines but the trees demanded a different approach. If you like doing fine line sketches try the same pen I use. It’s a Micron 005. It’s also waterproof if you want to add some wash on it after. I’m so glad you are inspired. I love to hear that people are drawing.


  3. Jane says:

    In Rigaud there is a nesting colony of blue herons on 105 acres of protected land. Maybe that one day we could go and sketch these way way way up up up on the mountain 😉 Beautiful Shari as always. I agree with John, I love the 3 + 7 combo.


    • I love herons and would love to go with you one day Jane. Would we get to hike up the mountain? That would be an added bonus.


      • Jane Hannah says:

        Actually the nesting colony is lower so it is kind of a trip to the colony, and another trip to the top of the mountain. On my side of the mountain, there is a trail that takes about 1/2 hour to get to by foot from my house, but the view. You can see up to St. Anicet, Beauharnois, Lake St. Louis, Montreal and Lake of Two Mountains… it is incredible. We should go one day… I will send you photos of the two places so that you can judge beforehand.


  4. Elaine says:

    Not only is the sketch very well done but the short info on the birds most interesting to read. Thanks for sharing your talents and travels with us.


    • I’m glad you like the story Elaine. They really are fascinating to see. I took a photo of one of them sauntering down the street as if he lived in one of the houses there. They are also quite beautiful when they are flying at dusk, silhouetted against the sky.


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