As a European, I was quite familiar with the Scandinavian sea eagle. That beautiful bird has a white tail, and in proportion, its beak is a lot bigger than that of the golden eagle, a common raptor in most European mountainous areas.
Coming to America, I was anxious to see that other beautiful sea eagle, classified in the same family as the Scandinavian sea eagle. It was a delight to see large numbers of them near the big rivers in the Northwestern states. It was sensational how they caught fish. It is a bird of outstanding beauty, not only a white tail, but also a white head! The dark brown of the feathers, the white of the head and the sometimes bright yellow of the beak are very attractive for a wildlife artist.
Lions and eagles have been used by many countries, powers and dictators as their symbol. Nazi Germany had the golden eagle, just like the Romans did. The USA took the bald eagle as their symbol (after hesitating between this bird and the wild turkey).
In many heraldic symbols, one finds the eagle (and the lion), even in Medieval Europe. So, I preferred to paint a close up of this wonderful symbol of the country that I call my second home, the USA. I used a background of one of the most American fir trees, the Douglas fir. It became an all American scene.