Sketchbook: Animals

Whilst in the US I stayed on a ranch with 4 horses and 2 dogs. I had some time to do some sketches of the horses which I hadn’t tried before. They are difficult but I tried to think about shapes and how the anatomy was the same or different from humans. I can see why the masters were so focused on anatomical studies as it makes such a difference in how you look at things. These are not ‘good’ sketches in that they are quite basic but I learnt a lot from them. The first is from a photo chosen as the horse was standing in a challenging position. These are A4 and graphite pencil.

After I returned I remembered my tutor wanted me to do more in large format so I took some A3 paper and did something I hadn’t done before which is try line in large format. For once the cat stayed still. I was nervous but enjoyed building up the layers of lines to achieve the shading. I really like the curve of his paw over his haunches. I’d like to try this again and then try adding some watercolour paint or just water so the lines bleed.

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