BIRDS – Commissioners’ Club

BIRDS – Commissioners’ Club

Inspired by a casual suggestion from my son, I began this series of paintings this summer for the McKellar Market near my home in Ontario.

Jake challenged me to do the paintings within an hour, which I did for the first 20. I deemed that to be oddly exhausting and now allow myself more time. I like the rapid sketch style of the early beta birds, and I also love the detailed emotions and colors of current avians. Now that my regular employment as a bassoonist and teacher is starting to return, I hope to continue making birds though it might take more time.

I have painted 47 birds since August, 2021, all in acrylic on small wood gallery panels, 8″ x 8″ x 1.5″. After painting the first 42, I introduced the Commissioners’ Club, using custom-made (Upper Canada Stretchers in Owen Sound) birch-wrap panels and the commissioner is invited to specify the species of bird. Some commissioners continue to leave the choice up to me. And four of the commissions are for imaginary birds! These birds are now $300 Canadian, plus shipping and HST/GST (in Canada). The commissioner only pays once they approve of the art that I make. I currently have 24 commissions on my waiting-for-the-birds list. Delivery times are vague so no rush orders unless you want to add a zero to the price. I haven’t figured out how to add this concept to my shop since the actual paintings are sold before I create them, so you just have to write to me if you want to be on the list. Most commissioners order one and a few have ordered  multiples up to eight (if you want a flock!).I have really enjoyed making these birds and shipping them across North America and worldwide. Let me know if you want one!


is Saturday, August 21, if forecast doesn’t mention rain, I play my blue bassoon as (almost) every Saturday morning at the McKellar Summer Market in Minerva Park, selling my newest art, CDs and Solitary Refinement and Owner-Built Log House and visiting with people.  10 am to 1 pm  677 Hwy. 124 Minerva Park, McKellar, Ontario.

Art: Birds of my area, painted this week… grackles, jays, chickadee, cardinal and more to come! All acrylic, 8″ x 8″ on 1.5″ deep wood panels, priced for new art collectors at $45. Two have already sold and are flying to their new home in Indianapolis. Write to me if you want any… I haven’t yet had time to put in my shop.

Grackle Stares (SOLD)

Jay Says Hey!

Resting Bird Face (SOLD))

Redwing King (SOLD)

Blossom (SOLD)

The Grackle Has Landed (SOLD)

Cardinal Ruler(SOLD)

Cardinal Inquisition (SOLD)

My Queen (SOLD)


I am revising Solitary Refinement and adding my basic fingering chart along with more art and photos of fabulous bassoonists in full live action performance mode. If you have a great performance shot, full-out, leave-it-all-on the-stage with head up and the wind in your sails, let me know! I’m picky as hell, but it’s time to show our young bassoonists more real stuff.


Nadina, recording Weber Andante & Rondo, Photo by Cylla von Tiedemann

Krista Rocks Bassoon

Krista Wodelet of Nice Horse, Photo by Christine McAvoy

Nadina Vivaldi

Nadina, Vivaldi recording sessions, Glenn Gould Studio, Toronto, Photo by Rob DiVito

I have been reaching out to colleagues for images with responses from Krista Wodelet, Rebekah Heller and a few others. And I am hunting down the photographers and paying the licencing fees… luckily, I have been selling enough new T shirts on the  Society 6 site to pay the licencing fee to the New York Times for the fabulous photo of Rebekah Heller playing the Gubaidulina concerto. Can’t wait to share it all with you!


Nadina Wild Horse JPF Awards

Nadina JPF Awards, Wild Horse Saloon, Nashville, Photo by Mark Mosrie