donny nguyen.
donny nguyen.
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bestiary: albatross

i don’t remember much from my high school english classes. being the techno-geek that i am, english was not very high on the interest scale after the ninth grade. the asian six pack was though! but for some reason i do remember the rime of the ancient mariner, by samuel taylor coleridge. i had never heard of an albatross and after having heard the description, i imagined them to be quite giagantic birds. what i didn’t remember about the poem was the reference it made to the birds being a sign of both good and bad luck. ravens seem to share this same ambiguous symbolic meaning so for me there is a nice alternative when it comes to imagery. i find it funny that of all the animals i’ve drawn for the bestiary though, the two with such ambiguity happen to be birds.

they are indeed large birds with wingspans that can exceed three and a half metres (over eleven feet for you empirical folk). i guess this helps them to efficiently soar over large distances with minimal effort. they eat fish and shell fish but they do scavenge as well (another similarity to ravens). there are twenty one species of albatross and nineteen are considered threatened. the amsterdam and chatham albatross are considered endangered. long line fishing is not a friendly activity for these birds. hopefully they’re still around by the time i finish this bestiary.

[+] comments

Nice drawing! It’s cool that you remember that poem. (I remember it too). I think of snakes as being ambiguous as well….

yeah, my memory is weird. i don’t really remember five minutes ago. but a poem from high school? of course i do! whenever i get to snakes for this thing, you can probably expect some duplicate verbiage, ha ha. but thanks for the heads up.

This is my next tattoo. If you want to add/subtract anything from this sketch, now’s a good time to let me know.

Joe, that’s really cool to hear. I have no plans to change it so go to town. I’d love to see the tattoo when it’s done though. Thanks.