After the stress of completing and submitting a show piece with only hours to go I relaxed with a robin. Actually it was quite stressful. Birds like robins with oval bodies and stumpy beaks can be tricky to paint with character. Half way through it was almost a bust but managed to salvage something in the end.
Oystercatchers. Michele Clamp. Watercolor. 11”x14”
I really wasn’t sure how this was going to come out. Bushy feathers like this are very easy to overwork but I ended up with a good balance of loose brushwork and detail. Not bad.
I’m trying to keep up with the facebook page Paint Colorful Birds for Fun and this week (week 5) is the ostrich. I tried to keep some life in the darks but keep the white feathers distinct and fluffy. I think it’s pretty much there.
Sometimes things just work. I wanted the colors to be muted on this one so the stance of the bird, its markings and reflections stood out. And it all came together. Happy camper.
Bird day today. Need a rest from the cityscapes. Quite a successful quetzal although this was the second go.
First go which wasn’t very satisfying :
t’s been a bit of a struggle recently. The brushes aren’t moving the way I want which is always demoralizing. This one is the best one for a few days.
I don’t usually do preparatory sketches for the birds. Most of the design work can be done just by making a good choice of pose. Something that’s characteristic of the bird but also makes a good shape and pattern of light and dark. This time I thought I’d try something different and start with a rough watercolor sketch=. This is what came out.
Yeah right. I mostly learned what not to do in the final painting but maybe that’s the point?
Anyway - after a rocky start I was very happy with the final painting.
Well not really. It’s kind of in between turkey days right now. I hadn’t tried a turkey before and they’re surprisingly tricky. Really enjoyed this one even though the result is a little scrappy.