Refining the blending of colours

Following on from the Crested Tit that I completed last week, I have now finished a Chaffinch and with a few final touches, the Greenfinch will also be done. See the bottom of the page for images.

It is good to review your work and I am happy that my technique is improving.

The first bird that I completed was the Blue Tit, which if you look closely, quite a few lines can be seen and the blending is not too good. Then came the Wren and then a Robin.

eyes (4)
Blue Tit, Wren, and Robin

 

I liked the colours in the Wren but the Robin, I can’t make up my mind about. Maybe it is the pose! At some point, I will do the Robin and the Blue Tit again.

Next was the Bullfinch which looks a bit garish. But Bullfinches are brightly coloured and some people commented that they liked the bright colours. A matter of personal preference. Still, I may have another go!

eyes (1)
Bullfinch, Goldfinch and Goldcrest

The Goldfinch,  I enjoyed doing along with the Goldcrest.  Goldcrests being one of the smallest birds can be difficult to spot particularly as they spend a lot of time flying about the treetops. Both are nicely coloured little birds that are a joy to see when you are out and about.

eyes (2)
House Sparrow, Long-tailed Tit and Crested Tit

Next came the House Sparrow which I was particularly pleased with. A fat little fluffy bird that I drew as if it was on the ground. I recall from childhood how they seemed to prefer pecking at the seed on the ground. A couple of people have commented on how the drawing reminded them of that same characteristic. Pity that they are now not so common!

There was in my opinion, a slight set back with the Long-tailed Tit, as it looks a bit scrappy. It was quite a challenge to render on a white page that white stripe on the top of its head in such a way that it stood out! I might try that again but on the other hand, I might be able to rework it and improve the overall appearance. Will have to think about that.

Long-tailed Tits will now be gathering in flocks. I love it when they make their way along the woodland edge at the bottom of the garden. With their flashes of pink and white, they brighten up a dreary day.

The Crested Tit was another drawing where I felt I was becoming more confident in blending colours together. These birds can be found in Scottish pine woodlands and I think it is important to highlight the not so common birds.

As for the Chaffinch that I have just completed, I am extremely happy with it. The little bird that has been known to gatecrash picnics in the hope you will drop it some crumbs.

As far as the bird feeder specialist the greenfinch goes, he looks not so bad scanned but I may have over blended the colours in places. On the positive, I like the way the yellow and green do combine where I have not overdone it.

I will keep doing these little birds between larger projects as getting their colours right is a good way of practising blending techniques. Next goal is to finish a coal tit.

chaffinch_greenfinch_coal tit
Chaffinch, Greenfinch and Coal Tit

Finishing Projects!

At last, I have finished projects!

Nothing worse than having projects that you start but cannot for one reason or another finish.

The pug in pastel was put to one side because I had a deadline to meet with the black dog. The black dog was a tutorial piece to try out new colour pencil techniques and I have to say I am pleased with the results. The tutorial was delivered by Art By Law and the copyright for the black dog reference image belongs to Lisa Watkins. I did learn a lot about how to render the details in colour pencils such as the layering of the fur plus other useful techniques such as using a cutter and a stylus for texture… particularly for whiskers. Another useful skill was how to see colour in a black dog! The dog is not actually black it has tones of blue, brown, grey, red and even mauve. I found the experience extremely worthwhile!

The pug in pastel was an opportunity to compare the use of pastels with coloured pencils and I think I prefer the colour pencils. There is not the same amount of dust that you get with pastel. Also, I think there is more control and there is greater versatility in what you can achieve. The biggest drawback is you need a lot of “pencil” to cover an area. But for me, the results are worth it. The black dog was done in pencil and I think the effects are much better than the pastel. But then I suppose it is what you are used to!

The little bird is a Crested Tit that can be found in Scottish Pine Forests and adds to my collection of birds.  This drawing was started a couple of months ago but was put to one side while I finished off the dog projects. It is part of a collection that I intend to build up over the next few months. The birds will all be done using colour pencils and will start to incorporate some of the techniques that Lisa has used. The next birds I draw will be members of the finch family.

Lisa’s work can be used viewed on YouTube or her Patreon channel.  You can also search for her using the phrase “Art By Law”.