Hey Folks! Back at last - and finished at last...I'll still put up the progress pics but the illustration was finally done early yesterday afternoon. It doesn't normally take this long for me to complete a picture...honest...my wife, Julie, and I, have been busy painting and renovating the house, and the garden has come in for so much needed work too...so I've been a little distracted of late.
Now, on with the images... I wasn't able to photograph the progress of our two Adele penguins at left due to the very stormy, hail wracked, skies over Gawler, ( I use natural lighting for recording my pics as it is an even lighting and gives a truer sense of colour in repro). The Macaroni penguin at right shows the basic method I have employed to get colour, tone and texture in the body and head feathers of these flightless birds. As you can see from the progess pics I managed to take between the showers of thunderous hail and pounding rains, I start with a very light wash of the colour that is to be the mid-tones of the bird - in this case, prussian with a touch of pthalo blue. Over this base wash I build up the colours with successive hatching of stronger and stronger mixes of prussian, pthalo and then some french blue and finally some burnt umber added to the mix for the deepest tones in the shadows. (With the Adele penguins it was a mix of burnt umber and burnt sienna as the first wash and then on and on, as with the Macaroni, in building up the forms, texture and deep shadows.) For the white chests and torsos of all the penguins I used a combination of French blue, a very little of paynes grey and a little prussian blue. (You can see the first wash colours and how they were mixed and pre-tested on the protective paper I left showing in the first pic.)
The other two birds in this pic are, on the left (black faced), a Noisy Friar bird and on the right (Red faced...excuse the pun), an Australian Brush turkey. Both these birds - in real life - have no feathers on their on their heads but are, another pun, bare faced. Although, the turkey does have very very fine, black, hair-like feathers that are sparse and randomly dispersed. (Wasn't going to put them in but...he looked too bald without.)
The final image is of the diptych in its entirety...it may be that the two images will appear separately in the book they are to inhabit...it depends on the pacing of the text...editorial control of these decisions is not always left up to the creator...and a good thing too sometimes...you can be too close or too precious about your creations. These important aspects of book making need an objective and critical eye in the design stage.
Well Folks, that's it for this post. Hope you like what you see...hope I made sense too...