Wednesday, January 29, 2014

TIGER IN PENCIL - work in progress

The combination of this smooth Bristol plate paper (Canson) and the Grafwood pencils is a perfect mix for drawing the big cats and to get the effect of their soft, fluffy fur. This work-in-progress is a portrait of a Siberian tiger and so far I am happy with how this piece is coming along. As it is a close-up, it gives me an opportunity to showcase this magnificent animals markings and structure of his face. This type of drawing is really slow going as I build it up in layers to attain the look of the fur. Hopefully I will have it finished be the end of the week.

Sunday, January 19, 2014

'COLOUR IN YOUR LIFE' comes to my studio

There is a wonderful show on TV called 'Put some colour in your life'. The host of the show, Graeme Stevenson, travels around Australia to visit artists in their studios and to chat with them on a friendly and informal basis about their motivation and art making process. I decided to participate and demonstrated in graphite, working on a portrait of a lioness from a reference photo I had taken in Tanzania. I was pretty nervous on the morning of the filming but was put at ease by Graeme's professional and friendly approach. His gorgeous production manager, Sophia, did an incredible job of filming and editing the show. It turned out that Graeme and I had much in common and I had a really enjoyable day sharing such a love of art, wildlife and nature with such an amazing artist. Graeme is a man of vision and I am always in awe of those who take the time to put their thoughts into practice through great effort and devotion.

Demonstrating in graphite is not the most riveting TV viewing but it is a love of mine and I am always keen to promote it. Because of the slow nature of drawing, my piece was far from finished at the end of the show and it required a few more full days of work before it was complete. Here are two images of the drawing, the first one is how it looked at the end of filming and the second is the finished piece. 

I hope you can watch the show tonight on 4me at 7pm and in Queensland at 6pm, if not it will be available on 'Colour in your life' website.

                                      'Midday rest'    9.5" x 13"

Tuesday, January 14, 2014


This is my latest drawing that I have completed, titled 'Walking in'. It is from a reference photo that I took in the Serengeti on my last visit to Tanzania. These elephants were walking down to a waterhole where they drank, frolicked and generally fooled around having a lot of fun in the water after being out in the warm sun for most of the day. I used Arches watercolour paper using the short side at 22 inches to get the panorama view. On top of using my normal 2B and 3B pencils, I used some ground graphite stick rubbed gently with a tissue to get the soft effect of the dust. This was a great piece to show perspective using tone.
'Walking in'   9" x 22"