Gonzalez the Rooster

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    I don't have particularly steady hands, or very good eyesight, thus I prefer using oil paints that are forgiving. So I'm not exactly sure why I chose to paint our family's favorite king-of-the-roost, Speedy Gonzalez, with this difficult medium. I was rather pleased with the end result.

    I started raising chickens specifically for painting. That's right. For painting. Chickens, and particularly the cocky roosters, have luminescent colors rarely seen in the natural world, excellent for my personal regard of color.

    We started with four chicks who were supposed to be cockerels. Sunny, our matriarch, turned out to be a hen (obviously). But we had so much fun raising these beasts that the next year we ordered more...hens this time. Young Gonzalez, a Brown Leghorn, was thrown in as an extra to keep the pullets warm as day-olds from the hatchery.

    Gonzalez's claim to fame (other than his speediness) was his proud tail. He was a fierce protector of his flock and we so enjoyed watching him guard the fat hens while they free ranged in our yard. Gonzalez passed away bravely in the line of duty. RIP