Portrait birthday cards for my grandchildren
Cartoons are not something I am comfortable with, but I decided to persevere anyway.
This is my first attempt using Procreate. It took three days to create this artwork. Being too excited and impatient, I did not take enough time to research the available online tutorials and skipped over some of the valuable shortcuts; for example, I did all the colouring and filling by hand. I knew there was an easy way, but found the whole process so meditative, I wanted to continue as I was going, it was so enjoyable.
The other important thing I overlooked was not locking the layers as I worked and I had to start from scratch a few times. The illustration could also have benefited from exploring the settings for the brushes and smoothing some of the lines.
My obsession was such that I started to run a bath one morning and because I was so absorbed with the Procreate app when I did think of it, I jumped up and found the bath full of really hot water, 1 inch from overflowing. I had to wait an hour and a half for the water to cool down. Very irresponsible of me, I know!
This introductory course in Natural History Illustration is offered by the University of Newcastle. It is an online, six week course, focusing on botanical illustration and animal study and anatomy.
The course is available for a very low price (around $50 Australian) if you desire a certificate on completion, or is offered free if you just wish to participate in the assignments and take part in the online forums. Either way, it is very worthwhile.
I enjoyed the exercises and the positive feedback provided by the other students. It is a very friendly and supportive community and I learned new and valuable skills. The time passed so quickly and I would like to explore this field further.
I saw the rock (top left) at Surf Beach on Phillip Island and I would just clarify that I observed the rock and photographed it. Of course I did not remove it from the beach. The colours were stunning and it caught my eye – it was exposed on the shore line at low tide. I may attempt painting it in colour some time.
I had taken a photograph of this lovely little deer a few years ago. Figured it would be a good one to illustrate and try to work out the skeletal frame. I know it is not quite accurate, but was an attempt to show some understanding of the structure of the animal’s body.
I chose this gorgeous little numbat for my final piece. Photographic reference was kindly provided by Western Australian wildlife photographer, Rob McLean.
This beautiful little banksia was growing very unassumingly in the Coles Supermarket Car Park in Cowes. I parked right alongside it – the leaves were touching my driver’s window. The banksia was in several stages of growth, from the unformed, smooth young cones depicted at left in the above illustration, to budding cones and to the mature cones depicted on the right.
These tonal drawings were referenced from the internet, and suggested as exercises by the tutors. It was quite interesting learning about back light and reflected highlights. Not something I had analysed or given a lot of thought to before.
There is always something new to learn!
Public latrines at Ostia Antica which took hours to find – but I was on a mission; a pilgrimage, after seeing them on Mary Beard’s program on Ancient Rome.