Every Work of Art has a Story.

Every Story is an Inspiration.

Entries in Amanda Corlies (25)

Tuesday
Dec152015

Masai Mara Project

A bit of a bird nerd, I have long been working on a series of bird paintings that attempt to capture the animality and intelligence of birds. I was fascinated by a series of photographs my friend Angela Yang, who lives in a tent in the Masai Mara, took of this oxpecker grooming and eating the pest insects off the backs of Masai giraffes. After asking permission to use her photography as sketches, Angela saw my website and showed my work to her board. I was honored to be invited by the board of the Mara Conservancy to partner with them, and I began to paint and draw a series of giraffes for giraffes. These works will be used entirely to raise awareness and promote conservation for one of Africa's rapidly declining and most iconic species.

This first work, titled the Oxpecker sold to Cyndi Lee and 100% of the proceeds went to funding the anti-poaching teams who work to keep the Mara Triangle giraffes, elephants, and other animals safe from the rampant poaching taking place throughout this area. Because Masai Mara is not only a highway for massive animals migrations every year, but it also sits on the borders joining three separate nations with differing government policies on poaching and border patrols, it has become a very vulnerable and dangerous area for all the species who live there, including the humans.

The populations of giraffes have declined by over 30% in the last five years to say nothing of the critically endangered elephants, rhinos, and large predators of the area. The Masai giraffe subspecies, in particular, is critically endangered as well, meaning at the current rate of decline, it could be extinct within the next decade.

The second work in this series, titled Here Comes the Sun, is a pastel that was inspired by my friend John Ireland’s photography. The photo is of two of my personal giraffe buddies who live at the North Carolina Zoo, where I used to work as a zookeeper. I wanted to include some of the giraffes I have known and loved into this project as a way to feel more connected to their wild relatives I am trying to help protect. This work sold before its completion to Debbie Spanich, and a portion of the proceeds will also go to Mara Triangle.

The third work in the series, another oxpecker painting done in oil is currently in progress and is slated to be shown at the Riverviews Artspace Co-op Gallery in Lynchburg, Virginia this coming March. Come on down for First Friday the evening of March, 4th, 2016 to see it. 

Special thanks to Cyndi Lee and Debbie Spanich, both for their support of my art and the giraffes. For more information on how to help the endangered animals of the Masai Mara, please visit maratriangle.org.

 

 

Monday
May262014

Books, Books, and More Books. Summer Reading is Here!

Hey ya'll. I'm thrilled to announce that three more books from The Ravens Crossing are now available over at Amazon.

 

  

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Ravens Crossing Book Five is an the anthology of all three current Season Five stories written by myself, Andi Lea, and West Thornhill over at The Ravens Crossing. To catch up on Season Five, go here.

There is also a brand new story, for all of those following Darien and Lani. Don't miss the first book in the Wildwood Tides series, a prequal to the current TRC storyline. This story has never appeared on the TRC website. Find out how Darien and Lani met in Hawaii. It's a big adventure which might explain quite a bit about their current relationship. To purchase a copy, click here. 

In addition, for all those following West Thornhill's Wildwood Dreams, the prequal to that story is also available here. Find out how Keenan and Sera met.

And just because it's summer break over at TRC, don't think for a minute there's nothing to read. We have tons of fun summer posts planned, so check back on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays to find out what's happening in Wildwood. Have a fantastic summer, and as always thanks for reading!! 

Sunday
May112014

The Mom and Me Post

Rincon, Puerto RicoThis being Mother's Day, I find myself thinking back on all the adventures my Mom and I have shared together. If I had to venture a guess, I'd have to say we've been on more than most. Always together, we've hiked right into  the middle of things feeling fairly fearless. We've traveled to something like twelve countries, not to mention all over the USA. We've seen and done some seriously amazing things, like climbing the Parthenon in Athens, Greece, and climbing the mountains of Morelia, Mexico to witness the monarch migration. We've been in the wine caves of France and the olive groves of Tuscany, the rainforest of Costa Rica, and the Mayan ruins of Tulum. We've had rides in limos, and cruised the Caribbean, been bear watching in North Carolina, and whale watching in Maine. We've performed folk dancing at Kennedy Center, danced for governors, presidents, and a queen. We've seen the tattoo in Scotland and street performers in Paris and New York. And through it all, we've been together. So thanks Mom, for sharing the world with me. It's been a grand adventure. I wouldn't trade it for anything. Here are just a few of the pictures. Now, I'm off to go find the ones that need to be scanned, so I can digitally preserve them. It seems like a good mother's day project while I wait for my Mom to return home for our celebration tonight. Happy Mother's Day to all of you. I wish for you a mother as wonderful as mine.

Limo ride with the Mom and Me Gang
Under the Tuscan Sun

Mayan Ruins of Tulum

The Moulin Rouge

Dining Caribbean Cruise Line Style

Del Rosario Monarch Sanctuary. Those are pine trees, peeps.

Casino Time for the Mom and Me Gang

Sunset Cruise in Bar Harbor, Maine

Hawk Migration in the Blue Ridge Mountains of Home

Enjoying the Virginia Coast

 

 

 

Wednesday
Apr022014

Cougar Kittens Brave a New World

Spring at the NC Zoo is always a busy time. But, this year I miss the busy quite a bit. That's probably because  I keep getting all these amazing baby videos and photos. Who can resist Cougar cubs? Check out the videos below. The first is their most recent, their first exploration of their new exhibit, and the second is an earlier group of clips of them playing in their quarantine housing, where all arrivals at the zoo stay when they first enter the animal collection until they have been deemed healthy and disease free. Since they are now on exhibit, we can assume the kittens are all in good health. Yay! They will be making brief outings into their exhibit over the next few weeks until their keepers feel they are ready to brave the public and their new home on a regular basis. Happy housewarming and best of luck, kitties! 

 

 

Saturday
Mar222014

Baby Otter's First Swim

After years of trying, the NC Zoo finally has an otter pup. This little girl is eight weeks old and apparently, Mom got tired of waiting for her to get in the water. Check out the video footage that was sent to me courtesy of my friends at the zoo. I love how the mother just pushes her into the water. It's time, little lady. Having helped the zoo raise a reluctant swimmer named Amy many years ago, by wading her into the nearby pond and having her literally try to climb inside my clothes to avoid the swim, I can get behind mother otter's technique here. Amy eventually learned to swim as all otter's should. But, since this little girl, who is not yet named, seems to be born to it, perhaps we could have been a little less timid with Amy. Ah, well. Live and learn.

 

 

 

 The pup, who was born on January 15th, now has access to her exhibit with mom, so if you are lucky, you might just see them in person at the NC Zoo.

For those who cannot visit Asheboro in person, you can get regular updates by joining the NC Zoo's facebook page, or by going directly to their website. All the best to baby otter, her parents, and her keepers.