Rob Buckland-Nicks

Birds On Stone

Nova Scotia beaches are home to a broad variety of geological formations that result in widely distinctive stony shorelines. For the past thirty years Rob has combed these shores in search of the best "canvasses" for his paintings. On a good day he might find two or three.

Back in his studio, he studies each stone and determines the ideal composition whether its loons swimming on calm waters or osprey soaring high above the mountains. The first brush strokes are made on the stone with water. The final composition is blocked out with paint and then arduous layering process begins. Rob applies upwards of twenty layers of paint to create luminous textured surfaces of his subjects.

The end result is an exquisite harmony between the natural forces that created the stone and the creative forces of the artist. The selection of the bird to the stone is as much an art as the painting itself. While most painters are confronted with a blank canvas, Rob's paintings are already underway before he applies the first coat of paint.

It's as though he's directing traffic in nature by guiding some of her most beautiful flying creatures onto earth bound ancient formations. While stone is inordinately heavy, the flight of a bird is light - as a feather. Only in Rob's art can these opposite forces unite.