I am intrigued by the owl paintings of Jean Haines and have done several studies trying to utilize some of her tecniques. Unfortunately they haven't worked that well so I reverted to a rather more othodox method, although keeping her approach in mind. I'm not satisfied with the result and am still mulling over how to handle such a subject. There are several artists whose approach to birds and animals I like - Gerard Hendriks, Bev Jozwiak and Liam Quan Zhen for example and there are others....!
What a Quartet!
16" x 12" Fabriano Artistico Extra White 140lb Not.
I don't put this forward as a good painting just the latest - could be the fifth - attempt at making something of this difficult (to me) subject. In the painting I've deliberately toned down the three owls at the rear and made the slightly larger one at the front prominent using colour to do so. First I made a not too detailed drawing using a mechanical pencil with an 07 2B lead. I like the Pentel 205 series. Colours were Cerulean, Raw Umber, Quinacridone Gold (DS PO49), Quinacridone Rust (Graham PO48), Indigo (DSPB60/PBk11) (mainly for the eyes), some Cyan Blue (Maimeri PB15:3), Cobalt Teal Blue (Graham PG50), and Quinacridone Rose (Graham PV19). I think that's it.
Brushes used were the Rosemary Series 33 Size 12 plus a smaller size 6. Following this I tried another.
16" x 12" Centenaire 300gm (140lb) not.
Actually, although I don't consider this anything special, it is in fact an example of a failed painting at least partially recovered. I was about to tear up the first one in a fit of pique when I had the thought what if I washed most of the colour off, because there was nothing wrong with the underlying drawing. I duly did this with plenty of water using a sponge and then let it dry. What remained was a faint impression of the original with the colours in very pale tints.
Next day I had another try and this is the result. The other thing is that the paper used was the reverse side as the front or `good' side already had a (discarded) painting. For those still reading colours used were mainly yellow/browns and blues, Quinacridone Gold (DS PO49), Quinacridone Rust (Graham PO48), Raw Sienna, Raw Umber, Burnt Umber with some Hansa Yellow Medium (DS PY97) and Indian Yellow (Rowney PY53) for the eyes. Blues were Indigo (Daniel Smith PB60/PBk11), Cerulean and Cyan Blue (Maimeri PB15:3). When all was dry I dry brushed some white gouache on to various places. I think that's it. I only used one brush the Isabey Series 5228 Size 8 Kolinsky, except for the gouache, a small bristle brush.
The lesson from this if there is one is that watercolours can be corrected and, to some extent rescued. It isn't ideal and some will say just junk the failures. Still good paper is very expensive so why not try.