I’ve been watching ravens recently. That’s presumably why Daedalus (I might as well name the guy on the left at this point…) has black raven’s wings. They’re fascinating animals that have been present in my life since I was a child at boarding school, where there was a colony of them in the trees next to the big old house we kids lived in. I remember waking hearing them talking in the mornings, a strange sound that we’d hear all day whenever they were alarmed by the traffic of schoolboys as we went to and from class, passing beneath their high homes among the conker trees.

Now they live in the tall trees beside my house on top of the hill. They like to land on the lamp-post on the street, looking out for food, occasionally berating us for our raven-ish crimes as we exit the house. They walk instead of hopping, which makes them seem a little odd; they’re outsiders, like flying coyotes living on the edge of human settlements, never quite comfortable with their relationship to us.

Daedalus lives on the edge of society, uses his skill for some peculiar purposes and is wary of confinement. Icarus goes a step beyond and flies too high, leading to his downfall. 

It’s hard to catch photos of ravens when I’m on the move as much I have been this last few weeks, it takes patience to catch them in motion. I’ll sit and watch them for a while one day just to see what they really get up to. I would like to get some pictures of them flying.

Plans for the painting:

  • Paint a field of flowers.
  • White wings.
  • A spider.
  • Darken the ocean. 


About pearce

Michael Pearce is an artist, writer, and professor of art. He is the author of "Art in the Age of Emergence."
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