Monthly Archives: May 2010

pigeon documentary work-in-progress

The Pigeon Game

A documentary about racing pigeons.


Another Video that I found on youtube about racing pigeons in Taiwan.


caw! caw!

Two American Crow sketches from my journal.  I’ve lived around crows my entire life and in Ashland, their caws were the first sound I heard upon waking up. There is something comforting to me when I hear them in the city.  I love them and just like pigeons many people consider crows a pest. Recently I read a story from David Quammen’s book, Natural Acts:  A Sidelong View of Science and Nature.  It was about crows being too intelligent for their role in life.  In this article I learned that they are master problem solvers and even steal fish from ice fisherman’s lines.  Amazing!   So, I picked up another read, In the Company of Crows and Ravens by John Marzluff and Tony Angell.  I’m ready to read about more of their clever antics and of our relationship with them thought human history.

I’m still working on the Cher Ami embroidered piece.  I’ll post another pic of it in a closer to completed state soon.  Cheers!

Working on Cher Ami-in thread

I said that I’m into Cher Ami and I meant it.  This is what fifteen hours of work looks like.  Of course, one must go outside to seek inspiration.  This is a pic that I took on Saturday in the west loop before visiting the French Market.

seeking inspiration in the west loop

as of: 5/10/10

Put your heart into it: the story of Cher Ami and why I want to change my flight path

So, I’ve started a piece of a pigeon on linen and my hear is just not into it at this moment.  After reading the book, Pigeons I can’t stop thinking about the WWI hero, Cher Ami (which means, dear friend in french).  This pigeon was the last hope for the Lost Battalion of the 77th Division.  The Lost Battalion was comprised of about 550 men that were isolated by the Germans during a battle in the north of France in 1918.  Cher Ami is not just famous for delivering the message that saved the remaining soldiers lives.  It’s how he delivered the message that is so miraculous.  The Lost Battalion needed to deliver a message home by pigeon to inform allied troops to stop firing at their own men.   The problem:  the pigeons who were being sent home to deliver the message were quickly shot down by the Germans.  Cher Ami was their last hope with their coordinates strapped to his left leg.  Tragically, Cher Ami was also shot down however, he continued to fly with one eye, a bullet through the breast and a leg dangling by a tendon.  This bird arrived home despite his life threatening injuries.  Medics were able to save his life and he became a war hero.

This is such an inspirational story that I feel compelled to illustrate it in thread.  I’ve seen some illustrations online that show Cher Ami in all his strength and glory pre wounded and glowing.  I am going to show him, wounded and delivering the message: “We are along the road parallel to 276.4. Our own artillery is dropping a barrage directly on us. For heaven’s sake, stop it!”  Another idea:  his portrait as a war hero with his badge pinned to his breast.  Not my style but those are the two images that I have.  I’m going to get to work.

Today, Cher Ami’s taxidermic body stands proudly on display at the Smithsonian.