"Birds in watercolor" series

Motivated by the May 2013 challenge in the watercolor group of the site "Paint my Photo", I've been painting some small watercolors of birds. The challenge was to paint a male goldfinch in a loose way...and I tried, but I'm just a tight painter...actually, I try to be at a point mid-way between loose and tight and I like both extremes: loose almost abstract paintings and photo-realistic paintings.

Each of the paintings below is 8x10 inches on Arches 140 lb. watercolor paper. I will say that although Arches is a decent paper, it is not my favorite. I especially dislike its "wet dog" smell when it gets wet (apparently due to its use of animal-based gelatin). My favorite paper of all time is Fabriano Artistico extra-white. Some people have recently recommended Saunders Waterford and Bockingford (wood-pulp based) so I'll have to try them at some point.

From left to right, top to bottom: American goldfinch, American goldfinch, Goldfinch, American goldfinch, Kingfisher

Feel free to comment or share this with your friends.