To: 'Geoffrey Dabb' <>, "" <>
Subject: Postscript
From: John Walter <>
Date: Thu, 12 May 2016 05:22:34 +0000


I was interested to see your post re a bird in Von Guerard’s painting of Mt William. Some years ago I was given a book by my friend Stephen Temple Watts. Called “Views of Victoria in the steps of Von Guerard “ This book contains 51 of Von Guerard’s paintings which are mirrored by paintings by Dacre Smyth. Only 2 of the paintings in the book made use of a bird; the Mt William one and another entitled “Pulpit Rock Cape Schanck”.


Dacre Smyth was a naval officer, painter and poet. He was also an alumni of yours, and at one time Aide-de-Camp to the Queen and also GG Sir William McKell. He was related through his father to Lord Baden Powell founder of the scouting movement and through Baden-Powell distantly to Betty Temple Watts and her son Stephen. I found the connections fascinating.


John Walter


From: Geoffrey Dabb [
Sent: Thursday, 12 May 2016 9:19 AM
Subject: [canberrabirds] Postscript


In last night’s talk I touched on the significant, but largely unexplored, subject ‘the use of the incidental bird in landscape painting’.  The point is that a small and distant bird figure can draw the eye and create quite a different effect for the viewer from a view with the bird omitted.  The painter must exercise care to avoid the bird becoming so clear and prominent that it dominates the landscape. Below is an example, a fairly subtle one,  of use of the incidental bird.  Does the bird bear any relation to the incidental marsupials below?


(I shall offer one more example, a more blatant one)


<Prev in Thread] Current Thread [Next in Thread>
  • Postscript, Geoffrey Dabb
    • Postscript, John Walter <=

The University of NSW School of Computer and Engineering takes no responsibility for the contents of this archive. It is purely a compilation of material sent by many people to the Canberra Ornithologists Group mailing list. It has not been checked for accuracy nor its content verified in any way. If you wish to get material removed from the archive or have other queries about the list contact David McDonald, list manager, phone (02) 6231 8904 or email . If you can not contact David McDonald e-mail Andrew Taylor at this address: andrewt@cse.unsw.EDU.AU