“Shadow of Bison” Original Art and Prints

detail of painting of bison grazing in sunset prairie
“Shadow of Bison “, pastel on 26.5″ x 17.5” on Hahnemuhle sanded watercolor paper.

I have traveled too little to see any real wildlife aside from the critters who inhabit my back yard, so I began my wildlife excursions from pictorial resources such as magazines and calendars. Nonetheless, after being accustomed to seeing domesticated animals in the relative comfort of my home and neighborhood, it is almost a shock to see an animal which has never known a human and cares nothing for human companionship. Studying a wild animal in its natural habitat is a reminder that the world does not revolve around us, that these creatures get along just fine (and probably better) without us, that we are really only one more species carrying out our lives on Earth. And while, for me, the inspiration to put an image on paper is always primarily a visual inspiration, wild animals carry the same emotional inspiration for me as domestic pets. Add to that the beauty of a natural landscape and you’ve got a perfect recipe for visual pleasure.

I regularly write about my “Registered Backyard Wildlife Habitat”, and even though small and in a regular old neighborhood near Main Street, it is host to plenty of native species of all sorts, especially songbirds hence my quantity of bird art, but I have a series of photos I took at the Pittsburgh Zoo and intend to go there in good weather to sketch and paint. Until then, here are two featured wildlife paintings with links to more.

I saw a photo in a magazine of bison grazing on the plains and remembered historical and fictional novels I’d read from the “Little House on the Prairie” series to the settlement of the Great Plains.

detail of painting of bison grazing in sunset prairie
Detail, bison grazing.

I put together what I saw in photos and what I’d visualized while reading of a countryside I’ve never seen.

detail of painting of bison grazing in sunset prairie
Detail of bison on left.

This looks like a lot of bison, but considering how many populated this country just 200 years ago, this herd is just a shadow of what it once was, and in this orange twilight even their shapes are reduced to shadows.

detail of painting of bison grazing in sunset prairie
Detail of bison on right.

The original pastel painting, 26.5″ x 17.5″, was done in Rembrandt pastels on Hahnemühle sanded watercolor paper. You can see a lot of ambient textures in the paper in this painting, and even, just above in the lower right corner, you can see the actual color of the paper. This is a sturdy German-made 300# watercolor paper with deckle edges which has the sanded finish used for pastel and charcoal layered onto it, tinted various colors. This was my preferred paper for pastels in the 90s and early 2000s in part because of the colors in which it was available. I rarely begin a painting with white paper, when when I saw the photos of the bison and envisioned this painting it begged to be painted on this shade of this paper, knowing I’d be able to use that ambient texture to enhance the feel of the prairie grass.

This painting is larger than my usual and was actually difficult to paint because my easel at that time was quite small. Framing was another issue—I looked everywhere for the frame that would coordinate in style as well as color, and be able to support a painting that large with mats and glass and ended up with a custom-ordered 4″ wide solid wood rounded profile with a faux calfskin finish, an expense I never undertake except for this one painting. The mats are black core in a tone of orange that exactly match the mid-range tones of the painting. I still look at this painting and love every bit of it and am glad I followed my star to make it what it is.

I have the original painting alone or matted and framed, and I also have giclee and digital prints available in my Etsy shop and I even have one last 12 oz. mug available too.


The original pastel painting, 26.5″ x 17.5″, was done in Rembrandt pastels on Hahnemuhle sanded watercolor paper and is currently matted with two tones of deep orange black-core mats, and framed with a 4″ wide solid wood rounded profile with a faux calfskin finish.

I am happy to sell the matted and framed painting, or just the original painting if you’d like to choose your own mat and frame. Shipping charges are included in the prices listed above.


Shipping is included in the cost of each print.

Prints up to 16″ x 20″ are shipped flat in a rigid envelope. Larger prints are shipped rolled in a mailing tube unless otherwise requested; flat shipping is an extra cost because it’s oversized.

Please ask for shipping on the original or framed original.


The giclees are printed on acid-free hot press art paper for a smooth matte finish using archival inks. Giclee is the highest quality print available because the technique uses a dozen or more ink ports to capture all the nuances of the original painting, including details of the texture, far more sensitive than any other printing medium. Sometimes my giclees look so much like my originals that even I have a difficult time telling them apart when they are in frames.

I don’t keep giclee prints in stock for most of my works. Usually I have giclees printed as they are ordered unless I have an exhibit where I’ll be selling a particular print so there is a wait of up to two weeks before receipt of your print to allow for time to print and ship.

I offer giclees of this painting in two different sizes: the full size of 26.5″ x 17.5″, a half-size of 17.5″ x 11″ and a proportional quarter size of 13.25″ x 8.75″.


Digital prints are made on acid-free matte-finish natural white 100# cover using archival digital inks. While digital prints are not the quality of a giclee in capturing every nuance and detail of color, texture and shading, I am still very pleased with the outcome and usually only I as the artist, could tell where detail and color were not as sharp as the original. Digital prints are only available up to 11″ x 17″ so I trim a bit off each end to fit, and also offer the quarter-size 13.25″ x 8.75″.

Right now I also have one 15″ x 9.5″ digital print that I had made for a series to fit frames I had on hand.

The giclees have 2″ of white around the outside edges, while the digital print has 1/2″ around the edges. All are countersigned by me.


Because the standard size canvas prints are not proportional to the original painting, canvas prints of this painting will have a portion cropped off of each side.

I usually have at least one of the smaller sizes of canvases on hand, but order larger ones as they are ordered here because customers often want a custom size. Smaller canvases are a 3/4″ in depth, Canvases 12 x 16 and larger are 1-1/2″ in depth. I set them up so the image runs from edge to edge, then the sides are black or white or sometimes I slip in a color that coordinates with the painting. This canvas mirrors the edges of the image around the sides.


Prints up to 16″ x 20″ are shipped flat in a rigid envelope. Larger prints are shipped rolled in a mailing tube unless otherwise requested; flat shipping is an extra cost because it’s oversized.

. . . . . . .

Other Wildlife Art

Below is a slideshow of more of my wildlife artwork linked to those images in my Etsy shop. You can also find these and more on my original website under Wildlife and in my Marketplace purchase greeting cards with most of the images.

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All images used on this site are copyrighted to Bernadette E. Kazmarski unless otherwise noted and may not be used without my written permission. Please ask if you are interested in using one in a print or internet publication. If you are interested in purchasing a print of this image or a product including this image, check my Etsy shop or Fine Art America profile to see if I have it available already. If you don’t find it there, visit Ordering Custom Artwork for more information on a custom greeting card, print or other item.

© 2014 | www.TheCreativeCat.net | Published by Bernadette E. Kazmarski



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