So I broke out the ink and the old quill. A new nib was needed and they don’t always work well right out of the box. With the nib full of ink and pressing hard it just wouldn’t lay down a line. Maddening really, but by turning it over and flexing the point a bit I managed to work it into shape.
I had to adjust some anatomy and add more background elements for this one. It was a good exercise to fine tune my motor skills. Here is the finished piece and a close up.
I got the itch to brush up my comic book illustrator skills so I just started sketching out of my head on a 9×12 Bristol board. Once the figure was established decisions had to be made for costuming and furniture.
The armor came together bit by bit along with the head piece. As you can see the Kings of old would never have hired me as their armorer. I’m not sure where the idea for the Elk Antler throne came from but it seemed like a good idea at the time.
Here is a rough scan of the pencil sketch. My new OS doesn’t seem to want to play fair with my old scanner and the manufacturer doesn’t seem to want put out a driver for the new OS. Can you say COLLUSION? Well, that was a good first try, keep practicing.
Now that the latest gouache painting Crossed Roses is finished it’s time to return to my next large oil painting project.
A few years ago National Geographic Magazine had an article on crocodilians, an order of reptiles that includes alligators, crocodiles, caiman, and gharial. An artist included sketches of several of the phases crocodilians have evolved through based on fossil evidence. At one time alligators had a particularly canine morphology with a shortened head and long legs. It struck me how terrifying a creature could be that was a large alligator capable of moving and covering ground like a dog.
Continuing the dragon theme I started with my last oil painting Light Tamer, I decided to use this ancient alligator as the “dragon” in my next oil painting. After half a dozen quickly done sketches I threw down the pen and ink you see below. That should give me enough to go on as I start the final full size drawing that I will transfer to the painting surface.
This is a very rare Parrot from South America. I have been researching color theory lately and I have discovered I know very little about color. I used several shades of green and yellow to give the bird shape and depth. Notice the colors become less saturated where the figure recedes into the distance.