I entered a painting “Cockatoo Canapes” in the 2017 AFC Annual Exhibition. I always wanted to do a larger painting of this near-similar setting but this time including a male and female Red-tailed Black Cockatoo. Studying my reference photo’s I finally selected a couple of images where I could display a male and female pair typically interacting and enjoying the afternoon sun. The myriad of textures, lighting, detail of the birds and intricate complex character of the Squiggly Gumtree were extremely difficult and demanding to paint. I lost track of how many interlocking layers of paint I used to create the textures and lighting effects. With each passing layer the painting's character resolved and finally came together.