The story of Kildeer.


Dear Reader,

My name is Tim Foss. This blog is dedicated to my illustration work. The image above is a combination of ink line and digital coloring. My wife and poet, Dana Elkun, supplied the caption, and I created the drawing. We gave it to guests at our wedding, and enjoyed the process so much that you will likely see many of these collaborations available as prints soon. I will also post sketches from my sketchbook and explanations of my process as I move along. I intend to create an extensive links bar to those that inspire and motivate me. Feel free to send me suggestions.

Kildeer, the name of my illustration business, was a suggestion of Dana’s mainly because of the kildeer’s use as a symbol of childhood curiosity in Tom Spanbauer’s beautiful novel, The Man Who Fell in Love with the Moon, one of our shared favorites. An eloquent, if not dramatic description of this plover can be found here:

My illustrations come from a place inside of me that is still about 9 years old, but paired now with the perspective of being 35. I grew up listening to Kildeer in my backyard, and was often tricked by their clever maneuver to lead predators away from their nest by displaying what would appear to be a broken wing while leading the intruder away from their eggs. I spent several summers trying to help these clever mothers recover from their manufactured injury only to watch them fly away once I’d followed them across the yard. This was my first lesson in over-committing to a cause. A lesson I would never fully learn. And a lesson I don’t want to learn when it comes to creating illustration and artwork. Enjoy, and stop in often for a visit to the blog for updated image/texts that will soon be available as prints!

Sincerely yours,




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2 responses to “The story of Kildeer.

  1. Meg

    Oh! The Humanity!
    Just finished re-reading “The Man Who Fell in Love with The Moon” — first time since I lived on Spruce Place in Minneapolis all those years ago. It helped me get into such a wonderful space. WOW I LOVE THAT BOOK! Way to go on the blog, you and Dana are clearly an extraordinary match. Must feel great making stuff like this together.

  2. kildeer

    I know! the humanity!

    May the wind be always at your back, Mr. Spanbauer!

    Thanks for the kind words. We’re definitely enjoying making these pieces. Soon they’ll be in print, so keep in touch!


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