Chris McClelland

AFC Conservation Artist of the Month for June, 2008

After numerous visits to the Painted Dog Conservation Project run by renowned scientist Greg Rasmussen, near Hwange National Park in Zimbabwe, Chris has been giving a percentage of sales from his Painted Dog Drawings to help with this project.
Chris and his wife Margie are very keen supporters of Painted Dog Conservation since 1998 and are founding members of Painted Dog Conservation Incorporated, a separate non profit organization in Australia, which was set up in 2003 to provide support for the Painted Dog Research Project that operates across Zimbabwe and has its operations based outside the Hwange National Park opposite the Hwange Parks airport. From 2007 they have increased their level of support to include projects in Zambia and Namibia.
Margie was Secretary/Treasurer of the Painted Hunting Dog Research Project for a number of years before the name changed and still helps Painted Dog Conservation Inc whenever possible both monetarily and by the donation of prints for fundraising.
Chris is famous for fine, intricate pencil drawings of African wildlife, which is quite a contrast to his previous career: he spent 30 years managing a large Australian sheep station, which ran 40,000 sheep. His natural talent for drawing was recognized early, and he drew horses for a hobby.
He grew up with a fascination of Africa, inherited from his parents, and on his first trip there in 1994, with wife Margie, a respected photographer, he fell in love with the place. He began writing reports and drawing wildlife and lodges for The African Safari Magazine. Africa stimulated his sense of sight, smell and sound and he "found its heartbeat deafening
No other place on earth has the variety and numbers of such visible wildlife, and McClelland has since made nine trips to Africa, witnessing the powerful and unstoppable force of nature.
He believes he has managed to gather Africa's spirit and soul to fuel his desire to draw and paint the people, places and wildlife of the country with all of its harshness, savagery and beauty.
He has spent hours studying his subjects in their natural habitat, observing their movements,
and noting the interactions between predator and prey. He uses sketches, photographs, video footage and his own well-honed powers of observation as reference to accurately portray the behaviour and anatomy of his animals. He draws them with such fine detail that
each of his drawings takes up to 300 hours.
Coming from the land and pioneering stock himself, he believes that the spirit of the Australian bush and the African bushveld is a part of him, and he finds it easy to become one with it.
For more info on the Painted Dog Conservation Project please see


Previous Conservation Artists of the Month

(December, 2019)
(November, 2019)
(October, 2019)
(September, 2019)
(August, 2019)
(July, 2019)
(June, 2019)
(May, 2019)
(April, 2019)
(March, 2019)
(February, 2019)
(January, 2019)
(December, 2018)
(November, 2018)
(October, 2018)
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