Time for a catch up
I took a trip over to Rye Harbour as it has been a while since I visited, and the weather looked reasonable. it turned out to be extremely breezy and cold, but I saw Avocets and Oystercatchers, Brent Geese and Skylarks. I only got as far as the Gooders Hide before deciding to turn back; the clouds look rather ominous and it started hailing as I left – thankfully by this time I was back in my car. My birdwatching logbook is looking a little worse for wear but I ticked off a few more species so I will soon be needing a new one. I don’t know why I become completely incapable of spelling when I do bubble letters but it’s a thing.
Saturday was my birthday, and I was given a gorgeous new Fabriano Venezia sketchbook. I visited the De La Warr Pavilion for a coffee and drew the view from the balcony. It was very cold and all the seats in the sunshine overlooking the prettier vistas had been taken already, so I made a few quick scribbles of the beautiful houses opposite, then washed a bit of watercolour over once I got home. The paper is 200gsm so perfect for a wash, and has a lovely grain for pencil too, although it is a little unforgiving with the Blackwing 602 which is my favourite pencil to use. I love Bexhill and it’s rather faded charm so I went for a stroll through the town and along the beach before heading back.
Feeling buoyed up by the first-page-completed feeling that takes the pressure off a new sketchbook, I found a webcam in Namibia which is just wonderful. I have not tackled drawing animals much, and I also find it really difficult to get the scale correct, especially with animals (or figures) in the distance. Basically I am not accomplished at perspective in any form, so thought I would practise with the oryx (oryxes?) on the screen before me. I was given some beautiful pastel brush pens for my birthday, but as is often the case with these things, I decided to use my Derwent drawing and Graphitint pencils as they were the best colours. The oryx are more purple than the grey-brown that they should be but hey ho. I went over the white bits in gouache, and washed over the Graphitint to meld the colours a little, and went over the black with the gorgeous Ivory drawing pencil which is beautifully pigmented and buttery.
It was great fun to do, and I am really enjoying exploring non-bird related artwork, although I am looking forward to doing some more logbook illustrations in the next few days.