Superb Wren and Dianella – Watercolour Bird Painting

Superb Wren and Dianella – Watercolour – 15×15 cms – AVAILABLE

‘Superb Wren and Dianella’ is a watercolour bird painting exploring the beautiful blues and purples of the dianella plant in fruit and the Superb Wren. My reasons for being drawn to this combination of subjects is pretty obvious, two beautiful creations whos combination will make for a perfect marriage. This new painting joins my 15x15cm small bird series, returning to a lovely splash of blue to the balance. It promises to be a rich, vibrant and wonderful textural piece, with a delightful spot of bright, earthy fluffiness of the birds belly in the middle.


The wren reference and inspiration comes with the help of my friends at PhilShar Photography who captured this sweet little ball of fluff along their travels. I spotted this particularly abundant spot of dianella along my own, stopping to rummage around the knee high tapestry of brush, strappy leaves, berries and bushy debris to gather reference for the botanical element of this painting. Now Ive brought the two focal subjects together to create a totally new layout, the drawing of which you can see on the left. So much for ‘keeping things simple!’ Theres plenty in it but Im looking forward to the blue palette of the berries, offset so perfectly with the vibrant, fresh greens of the dianella leaves. Its a nice challenge…

For now I am still working on my Crimson Rosella painting which will take my focus a little longer yet, but I wasted no time, stealing a half day window between this and preparing for our recent long hike through the Australian High Country this week while I could, and I shall return to this painting for you again soon.




Returning to my little Wren painting today, Ive so enjoyed working on this piece again. Mousy neutral colours are anything but bland, in fact, its many many subtle balances of complex colour. Its so very beautiful seeing a ‘simple’ subject like this come alive and sing so wonderfully within the simplicity. I adore this tiny bird, drawn to the gorgeous, elegant blue tail. This feature will work well with the blues of the botanical elements surrounding it… So with that, I introduce you to my newest personality on paper and will disappear again to attack the dianella.






With my current run of commissions completed momentarily, I have a little window to return to this sweetie! Back to blue, dianella beauty, back to bonkers… but what a wonderful story to get lost within. Its not hard to find yourself disolving the days to the delight, and so Ill continue to chip away at these gorgeous berries today. Just a little update on the change of pace for you in any case 🙏🏻












With the blue Dianella berries completed, I start weaving my way in and out of the dianella branches, leaves and rich, wonderful background of this painting, getting into every little nitty gritty delight of the subject. Watercolour is so wonderful, the way it speaks. This has been a long but excellent conversation.










Detangling is a word I find myself using often in my work and this is a perfect example of what I mean by that. Undergrowth, texture, colour spilling from one element to the next, stitching together and unpicking to a fine degree. What a delight. Here we come to the end of this background, the blue berries resting amongst the delicate, rich scrub… just the way Dianella is. I LOVE it… So I just have the strappy green leaves remaining for this painting now which should really pack a beautiful, vibrant punch to wrap up this piece.

But first… its time for me to leave home for my Queensland Painting Workshops coming up. We have 9 days of events and Im really looking forward to it. Ill be back to complete this painting soon though so stay tuned 💙






Back from my painting workshop events in Queensland, I have finally been able to return to my little Wren and Dianella painting, bringing it to a close with the addition of those gorgeous blue green strappy leaves. Im really happy with this painting, the sweet wren bouncing about in the dianella scrub as they do, the beautiful blue fruits such a gorgeous focus to have explored, especially with all their perfect imperfections. I hope youve enjoyed following along with this study, thanks for joining me!






‘Superb Wren and Dianella’ painting is currently AVAILABLE as it has not been released on my social media yet, so please let me know if this one needs to be a part of your collection… blues go fast, rightly so 💙