CANBERRA artist Frances McMahon has won an Award of Excellence at the 7th annual Holmes Prize for Excellence in Realistic Australian Bird Art in Minyama, Queensland.
The art prize is the only one dedicated exclusively to Australian birds and is sponsored annually by Sunshine Coast dermatologist Dr Gary Holmes and his wife, Dr Margaret Anderson.
A former competitive figure skater locally and nationally who later took up classical guitar studies and conducted the Canberra Classical Guitar Ensemble for a year, McMahon has lived in Canberra for most of her life.
She was the overall winner in 2022 with her painting titled “Showing Off (Sulphur-crested Cockatoos)”, but this year turned to another favourite avian in her successful painting, “House Hunting (Eastern Rosellas)”, singled out by guest judge Steve Morvell for its “great control and excellent breadth of technique”.
“The guttering and eaves of the unit where I live are in dire need of a spruce-up. However, the local Eastern Rosellas don’t seem to mind, as they are often observed chewing away at the rotting wood in order to make a nesting cavity,” McMahon says of her subjects.
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