Sleeping American Avocet

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Project by Lori Corbett posted 09-01-2007 07:40 AM 2497 views 1 time favorited 26 comments Add to Favorites Watch
Sleeping American Avocet
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This is my latest work. It’s a first for me in a few ways…there is no texture on this bird…I challenged myself to achieve that effect with paint. In addition to being my first smooth carving, it’s also my first shorebird.

The photo I’ve posted here is the finished piece. If you’re interested in seeing the project, I have it on my site as a painting works-in-progress, along with an explanation of how this bird came about. I love the avocet, as it seems to be made for an artist…all sensual and sweeping curves…
Sleeping American Avocet

Thanks for looking!

-- "Jeez, Lori who were YOUR freakin' parents?" - Wendi R. (My Sis)

26 comments so far

View Diane's profile


546 posts in 4607 days

#1 posted 09-01-2007 08:06 AM

Wow, I love this. Besides being beautiful and life like it has a calming effect when one looks at it. I love that the bird is sleeping.



View Roger Strautman's profile

Roger Strautman

657 posts in 4617 days

#2 posted 09-01-2007 11:40 AM

Very nice! Oh yes, anyone that can fool the mind into thinking something is one thing when it is totally something different that is and true artist. You are quite the artist! Thanks for sharing!

-- " All Things At First Appear Difficult"

View MsDebbieP's profile


18619 posts in 4644 days

#3 posted 09-01-2007 11:47 AM

oh my goodness….... each little feather… wow.

-- ~ Debbie, Canada (, Young Living Wellness )

View Roger Strautman's profile

Roger Strautman

657 posts in 4617 days

#4 posted 09-01-2007 11:57 AM

Am I right Deb? This is a true artist!

-- " All Things At First Appear Difficult"

View Thos. Angle's profile

Thos. Angle

4444 posts in 4446 days

#5 posted 09-01-2007 01:24 PM

Lori, This is very well done. My hat’s off to you! It’s one thing to carve each feather but quite another to”Trick the Eye”. Trompe l’oeil ( French was never my long suit. Did I spell that right?)

-- Thos. Angle, Jordan Valley, Oregon

View Bob #2's profile

Bob #2

3810 posts in 4505 days

#6 posted 09-01-2007 01:38 PM

Very nice result Lori.
You know enough about color to know that black is a “range” of colors and that really helps with the proper interpretation as you have demonstrated here.
I am curious as to how you determine the over all shape.
Do you do this from photos or from field observations?


-- A mind, like a home, is furnished by its owner

View Dick, & Barb Cain's profile

Dick, & Barb Cain

8693 posts in 4783 days

#7 posted 09-01-2007 01:54 PM

A truly fine piece of art.
It’s hard to believe, that the feathers are just painted on, they look so reallistic.

-- -** You are never to old to set another goal or to dream a new dream ****************** Dick, & Barb Cain, Hibbing, MN.

View dennis mitchell's profile

dennis mitchell

3994 posts in 4798 days

#8 posted 09-01-2007 03:44 PM

Good to see your work again! I’m a big fan.

View TomFran's profile


2961 posts in 4478 days

#9 posted 09-01-2007 04:38 PM


This is truly amazing. Before I read your comments, I assumed that you created the 3D effect by carving this bird, but, you did it with paint!

I live close to the ocean and am amazed by the birds I see down by the shore. It takes a lot of talent to capture and replicate that beauty, and you’ve done it!

Thanks for sharing this!

-- Tom, Surfside Beach, SC - Romans 8:28

View Max's profile


56000 posts in 4757 days

#10 posted 09-01-2007 04:45 PM

As usual a beautiful work of art. I am always amazed at how you can make your work, be it carved and painted or painted be so life like. It is wonderful to have such a talented niece….

-- Max "Desperado", Salt Lake City, UT

View MsDebbieP's profile


18619 posts in 4644 days

#11 posted 09-01-2007 05:21 PM

yes, indeed… a true artist !!!

(like some other people on here, that I know of!!!!)

-- ~ Debbie, Canada (, Young Living Wellness )

View mot's profile


4926 posts in 4520 days

#12 posted 09-01-2007 05:44 PM

Really outstanding!

-- You can discover more about a person in an hour of play than in a year of conversation. (Plato)

View Lori Corbett's profile

Lori Corbett

26 posts in 4760 days

#13 posted 09-01-2007 06:59 PM

Wow, everybody….THANK YOU!
This work was, for me, a “breakthrough” piece. I know you would understand what that is…we do what we do, to the best of our abilities…when WHAM…suddenly something clicks and it all comes together, all the years, all the experiments, all the temper tantrums, all the terror, all at once – leaving you to wonder “Who was that , and what did they just do?”. (I ask myself the same question when I screw up righteously, too – grin).

I “broke-through” because I stepped out of my comfort zone…no – I stepped off the cliff of my comfort zone. The result is a culmination of techniques brought over from my flat art, and a “challenge” from a very good (but VERY insecure) fellow carver – who reminds me that I’m “not a painter”- among other things – at every opportunity.

Up until this point I had hit a wall, creatively…we all do…and I feel that if we don’t try new things, we get stagnant…and when we get stagnant, we quit…(Besides, I CAN’T quit..I got too much money tied up in tools…imagine that…LOL).

Thanks again…I’ve got another series of paintings for the last book in the series I’ve been working on…then back to my WOOD!! I’ve got some large commissions that I am anxious to use my new-found confidence on….grin….

PS: “true-artist”?...hmmm…I think we are all true-artists…we bring forth works to show the world the way WE see things…which is the truth of ourselves…and that’s a “true” artist…

-- "Jeez, Lori who were YOUR freakin' parents?" - Wendi R. (My Sis)

View CharlieM1958's profile


16283 posts in 4702 days

#14 posted 09-01-2007 11:59 PM

Great piece, Lori!

My dad is into bird carving (member and past president of the Louisiana Wildfowl Carvers and Collectors’s Guild), so I’ve looked at a lot of carvings. The true test for me is in the realism pf the feather work. Yours here is among the best I’ve seen anwhere.

-- Charlie M. "Woodworking - patience = firewood"

View Lori Corbett's profile

Lori Corbett

26 posts in 4760 days

#15 posted 09-02-2007 12:17 AM

Thank you, Charlie…high praise, indeed. I have a couple of very close friends who are bird carvers in the N.O. area and others in LA in general. Is there a website that I can visit to see some of your Dad’s work?
Is the LWCCG the club that hosted the New Orleans show (pre-Katrina), or are they hosting the Cajun Heritage Festival next weekend?

Bob…I forgot to answer your question…My reference material varies. If I can see the bird in real life, then I study it’s movements. Barring that, I try to find video footage (I worked with about 4 minutes of footage on this piece). A study skin is always great for feather shape (tho not good for feather LOCATION), but they aren’t always available. Last is lots of photographic reference…long shots for attitude and overall shape, and close-ups for detail.

-- "Jeez, Lori who were YOUR freakin' parents?" - Wendi R. (My Sis)

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