This watercolour painting of a chicken uses a splash of watercolour paint here and there to capture the lively spirit of a hen. Hens can be found in many places from farmyards to gardens and schools, even allotments and retirement homes!
Hens in the farmyard.
The traditional farmyard scene, with its colourful farm animals and birds, has been a popular subject in art for centuries. Whatever type of farm, a few chickens can usually be found strutting around the yard, barn or close to the farmhouse. 'Down on the farm' sketchbook studies, drawings and paintings of hens and cockerels in different styles and mediums can be used as reference material for farmyard compositions, such as the traditional hens in the barn popular art as depicted in watercolour and oil pastoral countryside scenes by 19th and 20th century fine artists.
Hens in schools.
Many schools take on the commitment of caring for small farmyard animals: they may keep hens, some keep pigs, a sheep – a rare few keep cows! They give children the responsibilities and hands-on experiences of caring for them – to build their knowledge, skills and empathy for other living things in the world around them.
This hen (and its group) would often be seen scratching at the dirt and pecking old cabbage leaves in its outdoor chicken coop, which was situated in front of a classroom of youngsters who had regular responsibility for the care of the hens - they took good care of them!
Hens in the garden.
A garden can go through many stages – from the perfectly maintained flower borders and neat lawns to the neglected patches of garden weeds and wildflowers - and everything in-between.
A kitchen vegetable garden can be so productive that it can resemble an allotment plot; to keep a few hens, a cockerel – perhaps even some bees – might not need such a huge leap of enthusiasm! Dreams of a garden goat might have been dealt with and discarded – but not dreams of keeping chickens or bees.
There are hen books, magazines and articles to browse, plus hen-keeping societies, clubs and individuals to advocate the benefits and joys of taking care of these popular farm birds – giving many good reasons for taking that leap!
Hens in art
But hens are a huge responsibility on time and money and it isn't always feasible to keep them in the garden (especially if the focus is on a kitchen garden and wildlife garden) – perhaps one day!
Until then, a way to get closer to learning about farmyard animals and pets is to observe, sketch, draw, photograph and paint them!
|Watercolour Painting of a hen.|