Thursday, September 8, 2016

Sketching a Canadian Lynx

Still working from a taxidermy specimen at Call of the Wild in Gaylord, Michigan, I spend some time studying a Canadain Lynx.

For this set of scribbles, I started with a blind contour drawing.   You can see that at the top of the first page below.  A blind contour is a sketch of just the outline of the shape of the object, drawing with your eyes locked on the object.  You never look at the pen on the paper once you start drawing.

Blind contour drawings often result in goofy scribbles that don't look much like the object--but then again, somehow, they do.  They pick up interesting energy and shapes that while not technically accurate, often have a "true" life of their own.

After the blind contour, I finished out the page with a close-up of the animals's facial structure.  Two really different types of drawings to warm up my eyes and brain and hand and heart.

Then I tried a portrait of the creature with just watercolor.  I wanted to use an unrealistic color, but also approach the painting a bit like a drawing, just to see what it would look like.

You can see how the warm-up ink drawings, the contour and the facial structure study, helped me create this portrait.  I really like the variation of line weight and color, which adds, I think, a liveliness to the viewing experience (at least to mine!).

Consider scribbling something in unrealistic colors and see what you discover!


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