Twelve years ago I was guiding wildlife artist Michael Felber
on the coast of Katmai National Park when a giant, male coastal grizzly ambled down the beach towards us on his way to a salmon filled creek. His demeanor exuded confidence and wisdom earned through over twenty years of surviving in the rugged wilderness of the Alaska Peninsula. We sat motionless in the driftwood as he passed, pausing briefly to examine us just long enough for Michael to take a photo.
Michael used this photo as a reference for a drawing using Derwent colored pencils over watercolor on coquille paper. I also wrote a story called “ Ode To Grandfather, An Essay About A Great Bear”
to help people appreciate and understand this bear’s life, which comes with the drawing when purchased.
A few weeks ago this drawing, called “Grandfather,” was awarded a prestigious jury award at the international exhibition, Focus On Nature XIII
! This exhibition is currently on view at the New York State Museum, in Albany, until January 4, 2015.
“As you can imagine I was thrilled and honored, since there are so many great works of art in this exhibition. Winning a jury award at an international exhibition is a big deal” Michael recently told me.
Michael has printed posters of this drawing in the same size as the original, and has donated them to help Chris Morgan’s conservation organization Wildlife Media. You can check out Wildlife Media’s work and buy a poster by clicking here.
They have already raised $8,000
towards bear conservation with “Grandfather!”