I thought that I would start to share how I put my Mongolia paintings together, starting with a subject from Ikh Nartiin Chuluu Nature Reserve. I had never been to a place anything like it and before I began any finished gallery paintings, I needed to learn to paint the various elements, both the land and the animals. Here are two studies of the rocks, one of a young ibex and a finished 15×30 of two argali-
Since most people are not familiar either with the species or the place, I wanted this first painting to show the kind of landscape that argali like; not just mountains, but upland areas with these rocky outcroppings. You can see the steppe down below and off in the distance. These were two rams who were spending at least part of the day together. It turns out that argali don’t form permanent harems or herds. Animals of all ages and both genders group and re-group throughout the day in numbers, at least from what I saw, from one to twenty or so and everything in between.