Field sketching Capturing the moment is done in the field using a watercolour pad or sketch book. I quickly outline the view and lay in watercolour washes that I try to complete in under 15 minutes. Here I am sketching in the Muskwa-Kechika region of northeastern British Columbia.
Working out the design In the studio (or the living room), I begin to imagine the animal and the idea I want to convey using a sketch book. I am less interested in technical accuracy than with the design and concept. In this sketch, I wanted to emphasize the long neck and bill pointing in the opposite direction that it was moving and I wanted it to look as light footed on its toes, as if it was dancing.
Painting the final piece The final step is to draw the sketch on to a large piece of watercolour paper. I use cold press paper, stretched and taped to a board so I can turn it. I free draw the sketch on the paper and use liquid frisquet to mask areas. The washes are a lot of fun and applied very quickly with a variety of brushes, sponges, and sometimes directly fro the tubes of paint. The bird is painted using fine tipped W & N brushes.
Direct Correspondence to:
Rob Butler c/o
824 Ladner St New Westminster, British Columbia
Canada V3L 4W4 Tel: 604 831 8191