Brush & Pen Hatching Birds

Studying Raymond Sheppards own field sketches my pencil drawing stayed faithful. One I prepared the saucer of ink I went my own way. Inspired by Magpies, Jays and Mockingbirds these sketchbook drawings had the secondary benefit of improving the harmony between brush and pen.

Hooded Merganser

I've spent the past few days thinking about this pair of Mergansers that visit a nearby pond each year. A quick internet search will return more photographs of the male and its signature white on black full crest. Drawing these crests can be deceptive. Male or female I was tempted to draw one big circular … Continue reading Hooded Merganser

Strawberry Finch

I'm late sending out holiday cards stuck on what bird to paint. I remember a friend sent me a photo they saw online of a strawberry finch. A Saturday afternoon watching videos of these dramatic and unique finches resulted in this drawing. I used a little permanent gouache for the bird's striking spots.

Cedar Waxwing

As the name implies this is a smooth looking bird especially when alert. It's tempting to treat the chest, wing and mantle as one volume. I didn't get to do much drawing today so this was a welcome meditation.

American Redstart

This was a satisfying pencil drawing and then I decided to try a gouache stain over parts of it. I immediately regretted it but kept going in the hopes of salvaging the sketch. It's a sketch in a sketchbook. The point is to allow room for mistakes.

House Wren

They're fairly common but get confused as just another little brown bird lumped in with sparrows. A little stocker in appearance even when the feather groups tighten up when they are on alert. I didn't get too deep into showing their barring on the wings and tail. I may have actually played them down a … Continue reading House Wren

Sandhill Crane

I've been thinking about the differences between cranes and herons. I love watching Black-crowned Night-Herons and Great Blue Herons fishing or just hanging out. I haven't had the opportunity to watch Sandhill Cranes but they seem to bring a lot of drama in their movements.