Circa 1940’s, loggers use a two-man chainsaw to fell a large Douglas-fir. Pen and ink.
It’s time for Mary and me to create a piece of art for charity once again. Every year we do something for the Sierra Cascade Logging Conference Forestry Education Auction. This pen and ink is my exploratory drawing for my painting. I like the direction it’s going. The tree and the background still needs some tweaking. I was helped out by the Forest History Society. They have an excellent photo library of vintage logging scenes and were kind enough to allow me use it for art reference.
Last year at the auction Mary and I each provide a piece of art. To liven things up we competed against each other. It was a big success. You can read about it here on Mary’s blog, And The Winner Is!In fact it was so successful that we are going head to head again this year. We’ll both be working on our paintings this weekend. I can’t wait to see the competition this year.
Canyon Live Oak, Quercus chrysolepis, is an evergreen oak of the California Sierra Nevada and Coastal Range. Its full range stretches from Mexico and Arizona north to southwestern Oregon. These trees typically prefer shallow soils like those found in steep canyons common in the low and mid elevation mountains. Hence the name. These sites are normally poor soil quality and aren’t the best locations for growing commercial timber. Canyon Live Oak is not considered as a commercial species. Its main commercial value is as firewood. However, it has a high intrinsic value as a species important to wildlife. In forest management it is far more beneficial left on the landscape providing food, nesting and roosting habitat.
Canyon Live Oak, Quercus chrysolepis
The camera wasn’t crooked. A canyon live oak in a canyon.
Canyon Live Oak Acorns
This specimen is over 4 feet in diameter.
Acorn woodpeckers use the canyon live oak acorns as a food source.
More Canyon Live Oak Acorns
Black bears eat mass quantities of acorns in the fall.
Fawns are often killed by black bears in the Spring. Right after birth, fawns know instinctively to lay perfectly still. They have almost no scent. If the fawn doesn’t move a muscle and the bear is up wind it my not see the little deer.
I have you folks to thank, or blame for this pen and ink. It’s the third version of this fawn. You can see the two previous versions in the post Wild Wednesday Fawn Redo. First was a sweet vignette, which Mary told me was lacking. So I added more detail and asked if you all preferred the simple vignette of the more complete fawn. I received lots of great feedback and the majority liked the additional detail. If more detail is good then a lot more should be great. Truth is, I kept adding more and more because I had a vision. That’s when the bear came along to add some drama. The first rendition was lackluster. Now it tells a story, so thank you Mary and all you folks who commented before. Listening to a good critique only makes us better artist and writers. Even if I grumbled about it at first.
On a side note, if I’d known it was going to morph into this final drawing, the composition would have been different. However, I think it works okay. What do you think?
In Head to Head Bliss we saw Mary’s work in progress. It’s an original watercolor submission, “Food Chain”, for the Sierra Cascade Logging Conference Forestry Education Dinner/Auction. Now for her competition. This is my work in progress
This is a multi-media piece called “Uncle Sam.” Uncle Sam is the name of the little locomotive in the picture. I made a print of my original pen and ink onto 140 lbs watercolor paper. I expanded and enhanced the print with additional pen and ink.
Next I did a two-tone watercolor painting with sepia and raw umber. The goal is to create an original piece reminiscent of an old sepia tone photograph. Both pieces are being framed right now. Stay tuned for our final pieces!
The view of the art table with one of the spreads in progress.
These were all that’s left to do. All have been started. Mary stretched and mounted them all for me, while I was painting. It’s good to have people! Working multiple illustrations at the same time is a very efficient way to get these done. By Sunday night I had completed two more spreads.
This is the view out my window at my painting table, while I work. Not bad.