One day this spring this fella, whose name was Mr, was walking around keeping an eye on things at our local strawberry farm. All his lady friends were inside a fence, but he got to roam around with all the people.
He was so gorgeous that I snapped a bunch of photos of him thinking I'd love to paint his portrait. When choosing a reference photo, I noticed one... His head was turned back... maybe watching one of his lady chickens as she was heading into the coop. The coop was red... the grass was green... one door was down, the other up... a hen was on the ramp! What a story! I wonder what he was
When I started painting, my thoughts were of Charlton the Third, the rooster in my new favorite bunch of farmyard friends from Dan Bar-el's Audrey (Cow). He was a hoot! And, he did play a big part in "making it happen" in an exciting part of the story, but Charlton was kind of... hmmm... silly... kind of in love with himself with a bit of a snooty-Shakespearean attitude. That didn't fit for this guy.
As Mr. began to show up on my canvas, however, a different rooster kept coming into my mind.
When my kids were very little, an animated movie (not Disney) came out called Rock-A-Doodle. One of the main characters was a rooster, a very cool rooster in an Elvis kind of way, named Chanticleer. While I was painting, I kept hearing him (through Glen Campbell's voice) singing...
Cock-a-doo! What a day! The sun is shining brightly!
Cock-a-doo! What a day! Down here on the farm!
Unfortunately for me, I'm lyric-challenged... can't remember more than two lines of any song, but oh, well, I love those two lines.
Maybe one of these days I'll get around to painting a few of Mr.'s ladies. I've got a good chicken story (and even a blurry black and white photo to go with it) from when I was a little girl. FYI - That chicken from my memory was named Big Red.