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Cervidae I by Will L. Eskridge

Cervidae I by Will L. Eskridge

“Cervidae I”
oil on canvas

Just finished this up. I’ve been exploring themes of animal (including human) population and it’s affects on the earth.

“Hunting deer is necessary to control their population”. This common quote has always fascinated me as I immediately think to myself, “well what happened to the deer’s natural predators?” The wolves and cougars were driven out and hunted down by humans. Not to be confused as a misanthropy piece, but rather an epiphany piece to help shed some light on this particular ecological conundrum.


I grew up with a veterinarian as a father and an artist as a mother. Having a father as a veterinarian instilled in me a deep affinity for animals. All the animal companions we took in were rejects from Dad’s practice whom clients had left behind.

Helping out at my father’s practice gave me direct behind-the-scenes access into the lives of animals on a daily basis. It is hard to pinpoint an exact time, but I was very young when I slowly realized that animals were not all that different than humans. Time and time again I saw various cats and dogs expressing emotion and feeling beyond basic instinct. Witnessing both happy moments and not so happy moments between owners and pets made me realize the massive impact animals have on humans and vice versa. Some call it energy. Some call it spirit. But we can all agree that there is something connecting us all. To paraphrase: We are not animal beings having a spiritual experience. We are spiritual beings having an animal experience.

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