Sunday, October 25, 2009

Tango in Blue - Final

Howdy Folks! Our trotting coppers are finished - at last - I hope you like them. The bottom pic is of the paper sheets that I used to protect the illustration from paint spatters and my coffee spills as I work the image up, they also double as colour test sheets. Sometimes I think the tester sheets end up looking better as  works of art than do the traditional illustrations I finish up with...Ho hum...

I told you in the last post that these two are Australian,  Eastern curlews - I found my references for them in one of my big books on Australian birds...not sure that we can consider them as native to Australia though... they migrate to Eastern Australia in September and October, travelling from Siberia to escape the Northern Winter...Safer to think of them as Russian tourists I think...or RussoAustralian? (Let's face it, if we're honest with ourselves, we Australians tend to consider any one, or thing, to be Australian - no matter how tenuous the link - if it is thought that it adds credibility or glamour to being an Aussie. Pathetic really. The worst offendors are the news media of this country, there's always got to be an Australian link or angle to any international event otherwise it's not really news-worthy..."Train crash in Outer Mongolia! We cross live to Mongolia now, where our journalist on the spot, Kylie Muggins, interviews Australian tourist, Joe Blogs, who was almost caught up in the event...he was shopping at a Mongolian K-Mart not thee hundred miles away at the time...A close call Joe?..." " Yeah, mate....I woz in tha knitted sock section when it happened...terrible it were..." ) We are a sad lot aren't we?

And so, with that, on to the next picture. I'll keep you posted.
Cheers. RWS

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Tango in Blue - A Vignette - WIP

Howdy Folks! Back at last. A decoration needs as much thought and work as a full or half page illustration I have always felt. This one of two Eastern curlews dancing is no exception. I started with the ink line drawing and then laid in a light wash of pthalo and prussian blues to establish the high-light colour and then progressively built up the mid-tones and shadows. Once I was happy with the blues I moved on to the yellows, browns and touches of red and green. The white of the trouser stripes and rank stripes I added using white body colour - someting I am usually loath to do, I prefer the white of the paper to do that job for me. However, in this case, it would have restricted the flow of brushing on all those layers of blue which took a few days to do - due to the need to allow drying time between glazes. I would normally use masking fluid to block these areas I require to remain white but if left for too long - a day is usually the limit - the fluid tends to lift the paper with it when removed. Hope you like it so far, only a little more and it's done and then I can post the final pic.

Cheers. RWS