Tag Archives: painted dog

Let Sleeping Dogs Lie by Alison Nicholls

Let Sleeping Dogs Lie

We were looking forward to a quick cuppa, a nice mid-morning tea-break, but when we reached the big baobab in Savute, Botswana, we found that our spot was already taken. Let sleeping dogs lie…

Let Sleeping Dogs Lie by Alison Nicholls

Let Sleeping Dogs Lie – sketched from life in pen and watercolor, Savute Botswana 2018

The dogs made excellent sketching subjects, once I figured out whose legs and ears were whose. Painted dogs or African wild dogs (Lycaon pictus) are very social and like to lie together in a pile, in very close contact, so identifying which dogs to include in my sketch is the first thing I do.

Savute Wild Dogs by Nigel Nicholls

Painted dogs sleeping in a pile, photo by Nigel Nicholls.

Note the annoying piece of grass in the foreground – the bane of every wildlife photographer’s life. If I had a sketchbook for every time I’ve heard my husband ask why there’s grass in the way, I’d never run out of paper again!

Painted Dog Pile by Nigel Nicholls

Painted Dog Pile by Nigel Nicholls

Here’s the scene I sketched. Its so weird when I get back from our trips, see my husband’s photos and recognize my sketches. You’ll notice that the piece of grass is even more annoying from this angle…which brings me to another advantage of sketching – the artist decides what goes into the sketch and what stays out, so there are no annoying pieces of grass in my art.

Now I have to go find my own sleeping dog and take him out for a walk!
Alison
www.ArtInspiredbyAfrica.com

Wild Elephants sketch by Alison Nicholls

10-Minute Daily Sketches on Etsy

A 10-minute daily sketch is a great way to start the day, keep my sketching skills up to speed, and experiment with line and color. Every piece is unique. They are available at my Etsy Store priced at only US$60 each and 50% of the proceeds are donated to African conservation organizations. I begin each one with an ink drawing then add watercolor or fluid acrylic if time allows.

Wild Elephants sketch by Alison Nicholls

Wild Elephants sketch by Alison Nicholls

These daily sketches began when I attended a Portrait Party organized by New York City Urban Sketchers. There were nearly 100 artists, divided into groups of 12 and we sketched each person in our group, one at a time,  for 10 minutes. I enjoyed this experience so much that I continued doing a 10-minute portrait sketch every day after that.

Leopard Lines sketch by Alison Nicholls

Leopard Lines sketch by Alison Nicholls

Soon I decided to revert to my usual African subject matter as I realized this would be a great way to keep my sketching skills up to speed for when I return to Africa and sketch animals from life.  As my daily sketches started accumulating I decided to sell them on  my Etsy Store, with 50% of the proceeds donated to the African conservation organizations I support. These include African People & Wildlife (Tanzania), Painted Dog Research Trust (Zimbabwe), Cheetah Conservation Fund (Namibia) and others.

Kudu Bull sketch by Alison Nicholls

Kudu Bull sketch by Alison Nicholls

My daily sketches are based on the amazing photos taken over the years by my husband, Nigel. Working directly from photos is not normally something I do, but when I set a 10-minute deadline I have to concentrate on the basics and eliminate unnecessary detail, just like I do when I’m sketching from life in Africa.

Painted Purple (painted dogs) by Alison Nicholls

Painted Purple (painted dogs) by Alison Nicholls

Every sketch is unique, priced at only $60 and 50% of the proceeds are donated to African conservation organizations. I’ll be posting new pieces to my Etsy Store every few days so please join me for my 10-minute daily sketch journey!

Alison
www.ArtInspiredbyAfrica.com

See my husband, Nigel’s photos on Instagram.
Visit African People & Wildlife website.
Visit Cheetah Conservation Center website.
Visit Painted Dog Research Trust website.
Visit NYC Urban Sketchers Facebook Group.

Elephants in Brown by Alison Nicholls

Endangered Species Day Donations

Today is Endangered Species Day.  This is not a day we should need on our calendars, but unfortunately it comes around every year, with more and more species falling into the ‘endangered’ bracket.

Restful Field Sketch © Alison Nicholls

Restful Field Sketch – 8×10″ original watercolor on paper, unframed, US$200. A donation of US$70 will be made to Cheetah Conservation Botswana from this sale.

 

We hear about the plight of charismatic species like lions, cheetahs and painted dogs, but habitat loss, the bushmeat trade, the pet trade and human-wildlife conflict are pushing a huge percentage of our Earth’s species towards ‘endangered’ status. It is downright depressing.

Lioness and Cubs Field Sketch by Alison Nicholls ©2016

Lioness & Cubs Field Sketch – 11×14″ original watercolor on paper, unframed, US$300. A donation of US$105 will be made to African People & Wildlife in Tanzania from this sale.

So what can we do?
A lot.

Dog Pack Field Sketch © Alison Nicholls 2015

Painted Dogs in the Morning Field Sketch – 11×14″ original watercolor on paper, unframed, US$300. A donation of US$105 will be made to Painted Dog Research Trust in Zimbabwe from this sale.

Get involved, particularly in your own local area. Make sure your local politicians know how important the environment is to you. Stand against destructive development projects and stand up for sustainable long-term solutions. Protect invaluable wetlands, forests, plains and wild places, not just because they are beautiful and provide necessary habitat for numerous species, but because they provide us with recreation and employment opportunities, and because they are essential to our own well-being.

Elephants in Brown Field Sketch by Alison Nicholls ©2016

Elephants in Brown Field Sketch – 11×14″ original watercolor on paper, unframed, US$300. A donation of US$105 will be made to African People & Wildlife in Tanzania from this sale.

It is not eliteist to stand up for our stunning planet and its inhabitants. It is absolutely necessary.

Cheetah Trio Field Sketch © Alison Nicholls

Cheetah Trio Field Sketch – 11×14″ limited edition reproduction, printed on watercolor paper, unframed, 25 copies only, US$120 each. A donation of US$36 will be made to Cheetah Conservation Botswana from this sale.

And if donating to African conservation organizations is important to you, you can take a look at some of my work and know that for today, and throughout the weekend, I will be making large donations from any sale. I will also be offering free shipping within the continental US and half-price shipping elsewhere in the world.
Lets make Endangered Species Day unnecessary.
Thank you.
Alison

Alison Nicholls
alison@artinspiredbyafrica.com

Painted Dog pups by Nigel Nicholls

What Does Endangered Look Like?

Endangered looks like this…

Painted Dog by Nigel Nicholls

photo by Nigel Nicholls

And this…

Painted Dog by Nigel Nicholls

photo by Nigel Nicholls

and this…

Painted Dog by Nigel Nicholls

photo by Nigel Nicholls

Endangered is losing 99% of your population in just over 100 years…

Painted Dog by Nigel Nicholls

photo by Nigel Nicholls

And no longer being found in 25 of the 39 African countries you once roamed…

Painted Dog by Nigel Nicholls

photo by Nigel Nicholls

The Painted Dog (also known as the African wild dog) is endangered.
Approximately 500,000 of these never-domesticated wild canids existed around 1900. Today there are closer to 5,000. But the strength of these dogs is in their pack. They live and hunt together. They feed their sick. They share their food. They all care for the pack’s pups. One for all and all for one!

Humans have pushed them to the edge of extinction by pushing them out of their natural habitat and reducing their natural prey, by killing them as vermin, accidentally catching them in snares meant for other species and killing them on roads. But we can help them too. The Painted Dog Research Trust (PDRT) works in Zimbabwe, one of the last strongholds of the dogs, to conserve them using science & education.

Painted Dog by Nigel Nicholls

photo by Nigel Nicholls

You can help too!

Join Dr Gregory Rasmussen from PDRT at the Rye Arts Center on March 17 from 7.30-10pm. Learn about the amazing social life of the dogs, hear their strange calls, sip South African wines, try tasty hors d’oeuvres and see arts and crafts of Africa. Your entire $50 admission fee will be donated to PRDT to fund anti-poaching patrols, research and other vital programs.
Please RSVP to me. If you cannot attend please consider making a donation. Drop me an email and I’ll tell you how.
Thank you!

Alison Nicholls
alison@artinspiredbyafrica.com

Painted dog, photo by Alison Nicholls

Start the Weekend with Chittering Dogs!

Start the weekend with chittering painted dogs!

Join me to hear Dr Greg Rasmussen of the Painted Dog Research Trust talk about the unique, endangered and beautiful Painted Dog (African wild dog). Dr Rasmussen will talk about the years he has spent with painted dogs and the challenges facing them, particularly in Zimbabwe.

Painted dog, photo by Alison Nicholls

Painted dog, photo by Alison Nicholls

I recently spent time with Dr Rasmussen in Mana Pools, Zimbabwe, and we were fortunate to see 2 different dog packs, including 1 successfully hunting impala. Sketching painted dogs on a kill is not something you get to do everyday! And then we were able to visit the remains of the kill and watch Dr Rasmussen take bone marrow samples from the legs of the impala. (Obviously these dogs were fairly well-fed, as often there is barely a scrap left after they have finished eating, let alone enough to take bone marrow samples from front and rear legs!)

Sitting around the campfire we listened to spotted hyenas, watched for elephants in the dark next to our tents, and heard more from Dr Rasmussen about life as a painted dog conservationist. It was an experience not to missed. And I urge you not to miss this opportunity to hear him speak about his life and work with painted dogs!

So join me on Saturday (and you’ll also have a chance to win a limited edition field sketch of painted dogs from my last visit to southern Africa)!
Alison

Lecture with Dr G Rasmussen of the Painted Dog Research Trust.
Where: Wolf Conservation Center, South Salem, NY
When: Saturday Feb 20 at 6pm.
Cost: $20 per person ($10 for PDRT, $10 for WCC)
What Else? Registration required. Click here.

Playtime, painted dogs, by Alison Nicholls

Painted Dog Playtime by Alison Nicholls

Playtime is based on my recent sketches and memories of painted dogs in Botswana playing around a tall clump of buffalo grass. So where is the grass, I hear you asking? Well the composition did originally contain the grass, but I removed it because I felt that the obvious playful energy of the 2 dogs was the real essence of the painting. You can see from their raised tails, raised ears and general body language that they are ready to run and chase each other, they are just waiting to see who will make the first move.

Playtime, painted dogs, by Alison Nicholls

Playtime, painted dogs, acrylic 24×30″ by Alison Nicholls

The playful nature of painted dogs (African wild dogs) is just one of the reasons they are so wonderful to watch. They exude a real joy in being part of a pack, having close companions, and in celebrating their successful hunts. My choice of colors – magenta and cyan – reflect the joyful, energetic nature of the piece and the layered washes of color create distance between the 2 dogs (so I was able to remove the grass from the composition!).

Playtime was very loosely based on some of my recent field sketches, including this piece, created in Zimbabwe when I spent time with Dr Greg Rasmussen of the Painted Dog Research Trust in Mana Pools.

Playtime Field Sketch, watercolor by Alison Nicholls

Playtime Field Sketch, watercolor by Alison Nicholls

Playtime and several more of my new paintings & sketches will be on display in Wildlife Art: Field to Studio, an exhibition at the Flinn Gallery in Greenwich, Connecticut. The exhibit features work by 7 artists, several of whom are personal friends of mine, and all of whom are Signature members of the Society of Animal Artists. We work in a wide variety of media –  watercolor, acrylic, oil, digital media & sculpture; in a variety of styles – contemporary, whimsical & realistic; and we undertake our field work in different parts of the world – Africa, Mongolia, Alaska, the Rocky Mountains, India, Central America & the Long Island Sound. It promises to be an exciting exhibition and at least 5 of the artists will be present for the opening reception and weekend programs for children and adults. My fellow artists and exhibitors are Susan Fox, Sean Murtha, David Rankin, Karryl, Kelly Singleton and Carel Brest van Kempen. The exhibition was curated by Lillian Lum, Alice Sherwood and Claudia Schipper.

Please join me for the Opening Reception or one of the programs associated with the exhibition.

Flinn Gallery Events
Opening Reception: March 31, 6-8pm
Children Sketching Wildlife: April 2 (details tba)
Artists Talks: April 2, 2-3pm.

The Explorers Club Lecture, New York City.
April 4, 6pm. Registration is required.

Until next time…!
Alison
www.ArtInspiredByAfrica.com

A painted dog (African wild dog) and an Arctic wolf.

Painted Dogs AND Wolves – 1 Night Only!

Dr Greg Rasmussen of the Painted Dog Research Trust in Zimbabwe will be speaking at the Wolf Conservation Center in South Salem, NY, about the challenges faced by painted dogs (African wild dogs) and how research can help conserve the species. After the lecture you will be able to see more charismatic canids in the shape of the resident gray wolves at WCC.

A painted dog (African wild dog) and an Arctic wolf.

A painted dog (African wild dog) and an Arctic wolf.

I recently spent some time with Dr Rasmussen in Mana Pools and I can promise you this evening will be a fascinating one. You will also have a chance to win a framed copy of one of my recent painted dog field sketches, valued at $140, which I am donating for the evening.

Painted Dog Pack At Rest Field Sketch by Alison Nicholls

Painted Dog Pack At Rest Field Sketch by Alison Nicholls

So join me for this fun, informative and inspiring evening!
Alison

Saturday February 20, 2016 from 6-8pm.
Wolf Conservation Center, South Salem.
Registration is required as seating is limited. Price $20 per person.
50% of proceeds will be donated to PDRT and 50% to WCC.

www.ArtInspiredbyAfrica.com

Alison Nicholls and Greg Rasmussen, Mana Pools 2015

Caption Competition!

An informal moment from my recent visit to Mana Pools with Dr Gregory Rasmussen of the Painted Dog Research Trust.

Alison Nicholls and Greg Rasmussen, Mana Pools 2015

Alison Nicholls and Greg Rasmussen, Mana Pools 2015

I think this image deserves a caption competition.
So…any ideas what is happening here…or any great captions….
I’m all ears…

Until next time
Alison
www.ArtInspiredbyAfrica.com

Playtime Field Sketch, watercolor by Alison Nicholls

African Field Sketch #10 – Playtime – painted dogs – by Alison Nicholls

I believe that Painted Dogs (African wild dogs) are one of the most difficult sketching subjects in the African bush, because when they are active, they are hyper-active! The better I know an animal, the better my sketches will be, so by the end of my most recent trip to southern Africa, having seen 4 different packs, I was able to capture some of the more entertaining, playful moments. While the dogs were playing, leaping over grass and chasing, I was watching rather than sketching, but I am then able to create sketches of particular moments, from my memory, a few minutes later. That is how this sketch was created.

Playtime Field Sketch, watercolor by Alison Nicholls

These field sketches were created during my Aug/Sept 2015 African trip. All my field sketches, are created in Africa directly from life, or sketched back at camp purely from my memory of sightings. They are completely finished in Africa and I use no photos or video reference at any time in their creation. It is always tempting to add finishing touches back in the studio, but I avoid this to ensure that my field sketches really are field sketches. 

This Original Field Sketch is watercolor and pencil on watercolor paper, 11×14″ and priced at US$300. Limited Edition Giclées are also available, priced at US$120 each. Only 10 copies are available, printed using archival inks on watercolor paper, 11×14″, all signed and numbered by me.

A donation will be made to African conservation from every sale.

Until Nov 22, I will be sharing 1 of my new African field sketches every day. The new sketches are shown to my newsletter readers a full day before they are shown here. Click here to Join my Mailing List and see the sketches as soon as they are released, or see them here 1 day later.

Wherever and whenever you see them, I hope you enjoy them as much as I enjoyed creating them.
Tomorrow’s sketch is of carmine bee-eaters!
Until then…
Alison
www.ArtInspiredbyAfrica.com

Crashed Field Sketch © Alison Nicholls 2015

African Wildlife Sketch 7 – Crashed (painted dogs)

These painted dog pups (African wild dogs) were sketched in Botswana. They were nearly 4 months old, beautifully colored (not actually purple!) and full of life. Everywhere I looked were pups running, leaping fallen logs, falling off logs, chasing each other and then cautiously approaching the vehicle in a crowd of long legs and huge ears. Soon after, they all collapsed in heaps under bushes and trees. That’s when I was able to create this sketch. I added the watercolor back at camp, which is where my artistic license crept in with the coloring!  

Crashed Field Sketch © Alison Nicholls 2015

Crashed field sketch. Painted dogs (African wild dogs) in watercolor by Alison Nicholls

All my field sketches, are created in Africa directly from life, or sketched back at camp purely from my memory of sightings. They are completely finished in Africa and I use no photos or video reference at any time in their creation. It is always tempting to add finishing touches back in the studio, but I avoid this to ensure that my field sketches really are field sketches. 

This Original Field Sketch is watercolor and pencil on watercolor paper, 11×14″, and priced at US$300. Limited Edition Giclées are also available, priced at US$120 each. Only 10 copies are available, printed using archival inks on watercolor paper, 11×14″, all signed and numbered by me.

A donation will be made to African conservation from every sale.

Until Nov 22, I will be sharing 1 of my new African field sketches every day. The new sketches are shown to my newsletter readers a full day before they are shown here. Click here to Join my Mailing List and see the sketches as soon as they are released, or see them here 1 day later.

Wherever and whenever you see them, I hope you enjoy them as much as I enjoyed creating them.
Tomorrow’s sketch is of another sleeping predator – a male lion.
Until then…
Alison
www.ArtInspiredbyAfrica.com

Dog Pack at Rest Field Sketch by Alison Nicholls ©2015

African Field Sketch #3: Painted Dog Pack At Rest by Alison Nicholls

Painted dogs (African wild dogs) are one of the most intriguing of species, and one of the most difficult sketch subjects in the African bush. During the day they tend to lie in the shade, and they have such a lean build that when they lie flat out, they look pretty flat! Once they have finished napping, the pack becomes alive with activity – stretching, yawning, greeting each other, playing, then they are off on a hunt and virtually impossible to keep up with. However, during my September trip to southern Africa, I was lucky enough to see 4 different painted dog packs and spend considerable amounts of time with them. This sketch was created after the pack had hunted, killed and eaten an impala. As they rested for a moment nearby, I got to work! 

Dog Pack at Rest Field Sketch by Alison Nicholls ©2015

Dog Pack at Rest Field Sketch by Alison Nicholls ©2015

All my field sketches, are created in Africa directly from life, or sketched back at camp purely from my memory of sightings. They are completely finished in Africa and I use no photos or video reference at any time in their creation. It is always tempting to add finishing touches back in the studio, but I avoid this to ensure that my field sketches really are field sketches. 

This Original Field Sketch is sold, and this painted dog pack is currently trotting off to their new home in North Carolina! However, Limited Edition Giclées are also available, priced at US$120 each. Only 10 copies are available, printed using archival inks on watercolor paper, 11×14″, all signed and numbered by me.

A donation will be made to African conservation from every sale.

Until Nov 22, I will be sharing 1 of my new African field sketches every day. The new sketches are shown to my newsletter readers a full day before they are shown here. Click here to Join my Mailing List and see the sketches as soon as they are released, or see them here 1 day later.

Wherever and whenever you see them, I hope you enjoy them as much as I enjoyed creating them.
Tomorrow’s sketch is of a pod of hippos.
Until then…
Alison
www.ArtInspiredbyAfrica.com

Painted Dogs (African wild dogs) photo by Nigel Nicholls © 2012

Painted Dogs Hunting Through Our Campsite!

For this #WishIHadAPhotoWednesday, I thought I’d go back to one warm evening in the Okavango Delta, Botswana. I was with my husband and my parents; we had set up camp, with our guides from Gunn’s Camp, on the edge of a large island. We had arrived by mokoro (dug-out canoe), seeing delta life from a lower angle than usual, as our guides poled us through the clear waters, past lilies and papyrus. Night was falling fast and the fire was alight, throwing shadows onto our 3 small dome tents. We were getting settled in for the evening (most likely with a sundowner in hand) when suddenly it seemed that our small camp came alive with activity for a brief second. 3 shapes leapt between the tents. It was almost too dark to see them, but the smaller 2 at the back had distinct white tips to their tails – African wild dogs chasing an impala! Before we had time to react, they were gone.

Painted Dogs (African wild dogs) photo by Nigel Nicholls © 2012

Painted Dogs (African wild dogs) photo by Nigel Nicholls © 2012

I’ll always remember the silence of the hunt. There were just the sounds of a few fleeting footfalls. There were no cries or calls of any kind. We listened, to hear what might have happened to the impala. Did she escape?
But the darkness closed around us, leaving us guessing, and grinning at our amazing experience.

Until next time…
Alison
www.ArtInspiredbyAfrica.com

Painted Dogs in watercolor by Alison Nicholls

Painted Dog Doodles!

Normally I sketch in pencil then add watercolor, so I try to make sure I’m happy with my pencil sketches before I start painting. For the 3 small 5×5″ pieces below, I abandoned my pencil completely and went straight in with the watercolor, using a long haired rigger (or liner) brush.

Painted Dogs in watercolor by Alison Nicholls

Painted Dogs in watercolor by Alison Nicholls

The lengthy hairs on this kind of brush mean you don’t have complete control over the paint, so you have to be ready to accept mistakes as part of your work. I’m thinking it will be a great way to sketch when I’m in the bush, so I’ll be teaching this method on the 2015 Africa Geographic Art Safari, along with all my usual techniques.

Its amazing what can happen on a sunny day when you are sitting outside mucking around with a new paintbrush!

For those artists out there – there is1 place remaining on this year’s Art Safari. Come join me in the South African bush!

Until next time…
Alison
www.ArtInspiredbyAfrica.com

Expressions watercolor by Alison Nicholls on Dogs In the Daylight album by Jeffrey Martin

Expressions watercolor by Alison Nicholls on Dogs In the Daylight album by Jeffrey Martin

My music career goes back decades. It started when I attended a new elementary school where the children had already learned to play the recorder. I was given a recorder and told by the teacher to ‘join in when I felt able’. Needless to say, I never played a note. And that’s where it all ended for me. The world should be grateful.

However, the world should be equally grateful that Jeffrey Martin did pursue his music career. I’m thrilled that my painting Expressions, showing 2 African wild dogs, is on the cover of his album, Dogs In the Daylight. I am not a music critic but I love it. Here’s what James Carlson of Roots Music Examiner had to say:

“I am sure I won’t be alone in my assertion that Dogs in the Daylight is as close to a masterpiece as a folk album by an emerging singer-songwriter can get.”

Quite a review I’d say. So take a listen and prepare to be a fan!


http://www.glidemagazine.com/121982/song-premiere-jeffrey-martin-dogs-daylight/

Check out Jeffrey Martin’s Website

Until next time…
Alison

Art Inspired by Africa and Conservation
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Nicholls Wildlife Art

Living Walls, acrylic 29x29" by Artist Alison Nicholls

Living Walls, acrylic 29×29″ by Artist Alison Nicholls

Living Walls
Acrylic 29×29” by Alison Nicholls

Human-wildlife conflict is increasing across the globe as the human population expands and people compete with wildlife for land, food and water. People usually prevail and wildlife is squeezed into ever smaller ‘islands’ of protected land, but there are places where these trends are being reversed, where people and wildlife share natural resources for their mutual benefit. On the Maasai Steppe in northern Tanzania, the African People & Wildlife Fund consulted with local communities and created Living Wall bomas, fortified corrals, in which families keep their livestock overnight.

Traditional bomas are built of piles of thorny acacia brush which must be replenished every few months, often leading to deforestation in the area. Even then, predators can get into a poorly constructed boma, or their presence can panic livestock who break out into the bush, where they are more vulnerable to attack. In the past, people might retaliate against predators by tracking and spearing the animal responsible for killing livestock, but today livestock carcasses can be laced with lethal agricultural poisons which kill any animal, bird or insect that feeds from the carcass. For this reason, predator numbers have been plummeting (along with those of vital scavengers like vultures). If livestock can be kept safe in bomas at night, when most attacks occur, then people will have no reason to retaliate against predators and their numbers can recover.

A Living Wall boma differs from a traditional boma in several ways. It is made of chain-link fencing held up by living fence-posts cut from native Commiphora trees. The trees are not killed by the cutting of thick branches for fence-posts, and the chain-link wire ensures that the livestock cannot break out of the boma. My Living Walls painting shows a cow, a goat, a sheep, a donkey, a spotted hyena, a leopard and a lion, linked by the crossed lines of the chain-link wire. Some of the lines are shaped into the distinctive branches of the Commiphora, with their trifoliate leaves (leaves with 3 leaflets). Vegetation of all types grows up and around a Living Wall, creating an impenetrable barrier so that the Living Wall cannot be breached and livestock and predators cannot see each other, which is why the eyes of each animal in the painting are covered with Commiphora leaves. The fact that the painting shows livestock and predators as being physically close and linked together by the Living Wall, mirrors the situation on the Maasai Steppe, where they share the same land and the future of both are interlinked.

400 Living Walls are now in operation on the Maasai Steppe, protecting 75,000 head of livestock nightly. The walls are in great demand and no livestock protected by a living wall have been killed since the program started in 2008. Living Walls are installed in areas where livestock depredation is high, so the installation of just a few Living Walls can lead to a drastic reduction in attacks on livestock. Local monitoring shows predator attacks have dropped precipitously, as have retaliatory killings of predators by livestock owners. Living Walls are changing attitudes to predators and they allow the Maasai to continue to live with lions, an animal of vital cultural importance.

The original acrylic painting of Living Walls is available for sale, priced at US$4800. If it is sold privately I will donate 40% of the sale price to APW. If it sells during an exhibition where the venue collects a commission (usually between 10-40%), APW will still receive a minimum of 10%. Limited edition giclées are also available with a 20% donation to APW from the sale of each piece.

To see this painting, join me at The Explorers Club on September 29th to hear about my conservation-themed art based on visits to the African People & Wildlife Fund in Tanzania and Painted Dog Conservation in Zimbabwe. If you can’t make it to the club you can Live Stream the Lecture Here at 7pm EST.

Until next time…
Alison

Art Inspired by Africa and Conservation
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Nicholls Wildlife Art

Artist Alison Nicholls

Artist Alison Nicholls trying to say Conservation Conversation 10 times quickly!

A great deal of my conversations are about conservation (try saying that fast 10 times!) and they often lead to topics that seem depressingly impossible to resolve. Climate change, corruption, poaching, human-wildlife conflict…I could go on. As James K. Sheppard, a conservation scientist with the San Diego Zoo, told mongabay.com “conservation biology has arguably become the most depressing of the sciences”. He noted how potential conservationists of the future with optimistic personalities may be discouraged from joining the ranks of conservationists by the general doom and gloom that can pervade discussions in the field.

But the article by Jeremy Hance went further than this and aimed to highlight some of the great achievements in conservation biology today. And, if you look, there are many. So if you are feeling full of despair, read this article and take hope:

Mongabay.com: Why conservationists need a little hope

And if you’d like more evidence of conservation successes, join me at The Explorers Club on September 29th to hear about my conservation-themed art based on visits to the African People & Wildlife Fund in Tanzania and Painted Dog Conservation in Zimbabwe.

Until next time…
Alison

Art Inspired by Africa and Conservation
Visit my Website
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Nicholls Wildlife Art

I’m roaring ahead with plans for extra conservation donations for World Lion Day!
And I’m trumpeting my plans for World Elephant Day on August 12!

So here is my plan..
from August 8 until the end of August 12, if you purchase any painting, field sketch or limited edition reproduction of a Lion (or Lioness) or Elephant, I will donate 40% of the sale price to African Conservation organizations.

The donation will go to either the African People & Wildlife Fund (APW) in Tanzania or the Painted Dog Research Trust in Zimbabwe, depending on the artwork and where my inspiration for the piece came from.

Just to give you some ideas, here are a few pieces you might like…

Young Male Lion, original field sketch 11x14"

Young Male Lion, Original and limited edition available

 

From the Rocks by Alison Nicholls

From the Rocks. Original and limited edition available.

Hide of an Elephant. by Alison Nicholls

Hide of an Elephant. Original and limited edition available.

Remember, 40% will be donated to African Conservation!

You can use these links to see Original Paintings, Field Sketches, and Limited Edition Reproductions.
Please feel free to contact me if you have any questions. Trunk calls accepted!

Until next time…
Alison

Art Inspired by Africa and Conservation
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Moonrise by Alison Nicholls © 2014

Moonrise (African wild dogs) by Alison Nicholls © 2014

Here is my latest piece of art depicting Painted Dogs or African wild dogs. To me it seems perfectly natural to use pinks, purples and blues to paint these fascinating and most social of predators. Why? Because these colors evoke evening, dusk and on this occasion, even moonlight.

Moonrise was painted using only 2 colors, manganese blue and quinacridone magenta. Both are beautiful in their own right but when layered one on top of the other, as I’ve done here, they also create wonderful atmospheric purples. I could probably paint for months on end using just these 2 colors, but variety is the spice of life so I’ll probably pick something different next time. When did I last paint dogs in green, I wonder..?

Moonrise is priced at US$560 and 30% of the sale price will be donated to the Painted Dog Research Trust in Zimbabwe. It is also available as a limited edition giclée, 11×14″ on watercolor paper, priced at $120, with a 20% donation to PDRT. Please contact me for details.

Until next time…
Alison

Art Inspired by Africa and Conservation
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What kind of injury could a Painted Dog possibly be safe from?
Here is a clue. Yes, this is my German Shepherd, who is obviously not safe from this injury!

Chase by Alison Nicholls

Chase by Alison Nicholls

Chase, my German Shepherd, partially broke and bent his dew claw so it was at an angle no dew claw is supposed to be. He is seen here sporting his very snazzy rain-gear (made from pooh bags and duct tape) to stop the bandage getting wet.

And why is a Painted Dog safe from this injury? Because Painted Dogs (also known as African wild dogs) don’t have a dew-claw.

German Shepherd with Dew Claw and Painted Dog without Dew Claw.

German Shepherd with Dew Claw and Painted Dog without Dew Claw.

So now you know! Just one of the many things that makes Painted Dogs unique!

Until next time…
Alison

Art Inspired by Africa and Conservation
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January 23, 2014, 7pm

Remember to join me on January 23 as I talk about my Conservation-Themed Art and Africa!

On The Edge acrylic 24x30" by Alison Nicholls

On The Edge acrylic 24×30″ by Alison Nicholls

As part of the Green Speaker Series, I will be interviewed by international documentary photographer Daryl Hawk and will then talk about my conservation-inspired Art. You will see field sketches, studio paintings and video as I discuss my work as an artist in Africa and will explain how I turn a complex conservation issue into a finished painting. I will also discuss the work of the Painted Dog Conservation project in Zimbabwe and the African People & Wildlife Fund in Tanzania. All are welcome.

Advance Registration Preferred

Alison Nicholls & Daryl Hawk

Alison Nicholls & Daryl Hawk

Wilton Library, 137 Old Ridgefield Road Wilton, CT 06897. This Green Speaker talk is co-sponsored by Wilton Go Green and Wilton Library.

I hope to see you there!
Alison

Art Inspired by Africa and Conservation
A donation is made towards conservation in Africa from every sale
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Nicholls Wildlife Art

January 23, 2014, 7pm

Come and join me on a cold January evening to talk about Africa!

Alison Nicholls & Daryl Hawk

Alison Nicholls & Daryl Hawk

As part of the Green Speaker Series, I will be interviewed by international documentary photographer Daryl Hawk and will then talk about my conservation-inspired Art. You will see field sketches, studio paintings and video as I discuss my work as an artist in Africa and will explain how I turn a complex conservation issue into a finished painting. I will also discuss the work of the Painted Dog Conservation project in Zimbabwe and the African People & Wildlife Fund in Tanzania. All are welcome.

Advance Registration Preferred

Wilton Library, 137 Old Ridgefield Road Wilton, CT 06897. This Green Speaker talk is co-sponsored by Wilton Go Green and Wilton Library.

I hope to see you there!
Alison

Art Inspired by Africa and Conservation
A donation is made towards conservation in Africa from every sale
Visit my Website
Join my Mailing List
Find me on Facebook
Nicholls Wildlife Art

 

African Wild Dogs Find Good Home in India - by Artist Alison Nicholls

On The Edge, acrylic 24×30″ by Alison Nicholls

Recently I showed you On The Edge, my painting based on the doctoral thesis of Dr Esther van der Meer. Her thesis examines why Painted Dogs (African wild dogs) are choosing to move out of the relative safety of Hwange National Park in Zimbabwe and live instead in the buffer zone around the park where they have frequent fatal encounters with people. Read further details here.

I received a wonderful response to this painting and I’m very pleased to tell you that it now has a new home with a collector in India who has an interest in Africa and conservation. I donate a percentage from every sale towards conservation, so the Painted Dog Conservation project will be receiving US$1225 to help make the buffer zone around Hwange National Park safer for Painted Dogs!

On The Edge is also available as a limited edition reproduction. Please contact me for details.
A donation is made towards conservation in Africa from every sale.

Until next time…
Alison

Art Inspired by Africa and Conservation

Visit my Website
Join my Mailing List
Find me on Facebook
Nicholls Wildlife Art