EYE OF THE OWL

EYE OF THE OWL
OIl on 18x24 inch canvas

Tuesday, June 18, 2019

Banded Iguanas



I completed this ink painting of a pair of Banded Iguanas two days ago. I don't know how the video turned out. I had a bit of trouble but once I've looked it over I'll see whether or not it will be a good addition to my Patreon account.  In the meantime, however, my handy dandy droid came in handy to take some beautiful photos of the work in progress. 



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I used Dr. Bombay's India inks, Derwent Inktense pencils, Paper Mate gel pens and a touch of Daler Romney acrylic inks. This was the first time I'd used them and it was just a touch of yellow on the faces of the iguanas. I'm looking forward to experimenting with them and see how they work with the India Ink on a grander scale. 



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I drew the profiles of two iguanas from two different reference photos from https://wildlifereferencephotos.com.  I purchase photos from them and Pixabay.com when I don't have my own photos. They both have great selections. I've outlined the lizards with the Derwent outliner pencil.



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Then I covered them with Pebeo gum mask to protect the drawing while working on the background. This is applied with a brush which I then wash thoroughly so I can use it again. If you don't wash the brush it will turn the bristles hard and gooey and render it useless. 


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I've applied drops of Blue India ink and used a fine mist water bottle to dilute and move the ink about the board.


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I added sprayed some green ink onto the background and they some red in an attempt to create specific stencil shapes, in this case leaves and in this case it didn't work but I didn't care. 


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I dropped in yellow and blue ink and moved it about the board using the fine mist water bottle creating wonderfully organic shapes in a variety of contrasting and complimentary colors in the background. A simple, failed experiment turned into a beautiful background.


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I used a gum eraser to remove the masking gum and used the pencils to paint in the tree branch.


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I built up the tree branches creating the look of the bark and the shading.


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I continued to build up greater depth and shadow on the tree and the vine in the following photos.




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Then I added leaves. because I was painting over color I had to add a few layers before the leaves were done.



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I used the pencils and water to paint in the first iguana building up the colors and making sure the muscle structure was evident.




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The first iguana complete, I moved on to work on the second iguana.



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I used the white gel pen to add tiny dots to the iguanas to create the illusion of scales. I used the yellow acrylic ink to paint on the yellow around the nostrils and the ear and white ink to extend and define the claws.


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The green of the iguanas is in perfect contrast to the red in the background, making the scene pop. Even though red normally comes to the front in a painting, the use of tertiary colors blue and yellow pulls it back preventing the image from appearing to be flat. Now my ink painting is complete and the story of my Banded Iguanas on the hunt is just begun. There they sit in perfect stillness, watching and listening for prey and predator alike. 

Prints of this painting are available at Fine Art America.  Thank you for taking a look at my blog and I hope you found it helpful. Feel free to comment or ask questions.