When I started planning this painting, I had intended to experiment with a looser style. Quickly, however, things changed as the COVID-19 pandemic loomed on the horizon, and of course, broke as a crashing wave in my home state of NY. I am an immense nerd at heart, and had previously done some study on viral diseases, which gave some foresight on what the looming pandemic might mean for our society. On top of the growing anxiety from the pandemic, the unfolding exposure of human rights injustices, and personal woes, I discovered that I needed to work on a painting where I could lose myself in working on the details of the bird, even if that was a direction I wanted to move away from only months before. Fading Light is, in a way, a manifestation of the complex emotions and anxiety weighing on me. I added a firefly, Ellychnia corrusca, which is a lantern-less (no glow) firefly active in late winter and early spring, hiding under the branch that the Jay is perched on.