"Emu Elegance"
11x14" acrylic on canvas
(C) Cara Bevan 2007
Somehow my family’s farm always attracts animals, wild and domestic. One of the stranger ones was the emu, my
inspiration for “Emu Elegance.” One day my parents got a call from a nearby animal shelter. The manager said that a
pair of emus was running loose on a highway; one was killed by a car, but the other was at the shelter in a makeshift pen
in the parking lot. This shelter killed animals it didn’t have room for, and this emu was next if we didn’t take it. So we
instantly hooked our horse trailer to our SUV and we picked the bird up. We thought this emu was female, so we named
her Emmy. We made a large pen for it, with a six foot high fence, with plenty of room for her to run. We then bought two
other emus, named Lola and Queenie, to keep her company. Lola ended up being a male, and he's now named Lou.

I discovered then that emus are very strange. They’re smaller cousins of the ostrich, but they lay blue-green, very large
eggs. They stand six to seven feet tall and they can run up to 30 mph. Emus have large, thick, scaly feet and legs like a
dinosaur. In fact, they are well known for their powerful kicks when they get upset. I admire the interesting 'hair' on their
heads and unique feathers. Their feathers are the most unique of any bird in the animal kingdom; for every feather stem,
there are two individual feathers that sprout from it! This makes them very fluffy and well insulated. Male emus have
large, display feathers on their chest that seem more like paper than feathers. Despite being birds that originate from
Australia, they live well in most climates. They even lay their eggs in the late fall and winter, when it's the coldest. Emus
may be elegant, but they are very hard to paint - beauty in complexity.
Bird Gallery
emu elegance brown bird portrait acrylic painting
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This original artwork is for sale!
  • Original acrylic on canvas
  • Framed in a narrow, deep black
  • Hardware included, ready to hang
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