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James Ayers

Protectors of the Plaines Giclee on Paper

Price:  $980
Item#:  102106
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36 x 60 in.
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about this piece
James Ayers Protectors of the Plaines

he warrior stands tall and proud, visible for miles. He won't hide from his enemies, and they certainly cannot hide from him.

About the subject

The warrior featured in Protector of the Plains is based on a model I met at a powwow that I've been working with for many years. Any time I want to portray a strong young warrior, I refer to his studio shots for inspiration.

This man's outfit and equipment are purposely bright and noticeable (as opposed to camouflage). He is fully armed and wants any potential enemies to see him and his power as he stands, unafraid, in the grass of the Great Plains.

Many hours of research went into depicting this man's garments and accoutrements - gleaned from museum catalogs and exploring collections. Animal fur and feathers are meant to lend the powers of those animals to the wearer. For example, his red shirt has strips of ermine fur hanging from it. The ermine is a quick and ferocious fighter, both qualities a Crow warrior needed to survive the battlefield.

About the composition

I wanted to create a sense of vastness in the landscape behind the warrior to demonstrate how bold and unafraid he is standing out in the open. Notice the vastness of the Great Plains: This man would have been completely exposed and visible, with nowhere to hide. (Not that he would, of course.)

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