Doing A Little Fishing

I played around with some different fish styles for a fish book project. Here’s the catch of the day.

This one is mixed media pen and ink/watercolor.

The next is mixed media also.

The last one is straight watercolor.

I did these some time back and plan to do something totally different. I thought they’d be fun to post together. Do you have a favorite?

Osprey Baby Picture!

I’ve been watching, taking pictures and watching some more to get a shot of the osprey chicks.  Mostly, what I got was this.

Osprey, photography, nature, wildlife, osprey chick

The Look!  Are you lookin’ at me!

Sitting on the poles eating fish. It’s all good fun but where are the chicks?

Osprey, photography, nature, wildlife, osprey chick

What’s for lunch? Fish of course.

Then yesterday a chick got high enough on the nest to get a shot.  I have seen them through the nest since last week, but I couldn’t get a clear picture.

Osprey, photography, nature, wildlife, osprey chick

Finally, a baby picture!

Not the sharpest picture, but a start.  It looked like she was feeding two, but I never got a look at another.

Blue skies from now on.

Blue skies from now on.

I was planning a sketch of the view through the nest from last week, since I couldn’t get a shot.  This was the rendition I was planning.  A quick and dirty sketch of the scene with a few less sticks.

Osprey, pen and ink, ink, nature, wildlife, osprey chick

Feeding Time

This is also my Thursday drawing for Z’s  challenge for art at Zeebra Design.





Another Fish For The Fish Story

bass, largemouth bass, large mouth bass, fish, fishing, watercolor

The title page for the fish story.

I finished the title page for the fish story.  It is a fairly simple watercolor.  It still took about five watercolor sketches to get what I wanted.  I hope it makes you think BIG FISH!

Rainbow Trout, mountain stream

School of trout.

I took a few fish reference pictures the other day, although these were Rainbow Trout.  In a beautiful mountain stream.

Blitz, trout, rainbow trout, dead fish

Blitz finds a fish for me. “Hey Blitz that one is dead.”

Blitz, swim, stick, fetch, golden retriever, golden, retriever

Blitz goes back to what she does best.

A Golden Retriever isn’t very helpful when taking fish pictures.  Just don’t tell her that, I wouldn’t want to spoil her fun.

One Of These Fish Is Not Like The Other

In this post I will reveal the answer to the riddle of the Mystery Of The Sunfish. If you haven’t read that post yet, spoiler alert, I suggest you stop reading now and go read it first.

The mistake I made in the drawing of the fish, in Sunfish 2, would have clearly caused the fish to be eaten by a predator. Perhaps, the mutation did occur at some point in time, and the end result was an ancient predator did eat this fish. Thus, it never reproduced causing it to be lost over the millennia. Alas, I will never know if my picture of the sunfish was accurate long ago and that my mistake wasn’t really a mistake at all, but a brilliant scientific finding.

I know, you are asking me to just get to the point already. Look closely at Sunfish 2. Look at the scales. The scales are backwards. Yes I know, what dopey artist would screw that up right. I’m raising my hand right now. Having scales backwards on a fish is like a parachute behind a drag racer. Try to swim fast and they’ll flair out slowing the fish down so even the laziest predator can have a snack. This was not a genetic adaptation that would provide an enhancement of fish evolution. So until an ichthyologist out there sends me a note saying that I have postulated a brilliant theorem, I’m just your dopey Forester Artist.

On a happy note, I have to throw kudos out to Z at zebra designs, You should go visit her website it’s pretty awesome. She has created a lot of beautiful artwork to see. She did figure out the answer to the riddle. Not wanting to give it away to the other readers, she sent me some cryptic replies. It took her a couple of attempts to get through to me, but she finally did. She solved it and made me laugh out loud. You should go back and read her replies.

When my oldest son saw the post he also figured it out. He instant messaged me within five minutes of it being published. I asked him if I had ever shown him the picture before. He claimed he had never seen it. He is pretty observant, but he also knows that if I showed the picture to him, I would have forgotten about it by now. Just saying.

I bet if I were to dig into my pile of old stuff there is bound to be more bad art or dumb mistakes I made along the way. Sometime, I may post more for your viewing pleasure or pain, as it may be.

The Mystery of the Sunfish

I have posted very few of my pen and ink drawings, so I dug deep to and found an old sketch book from nearly 30 years ago.  Here are a couple of sunfish drawings for your consideration.

Sunfish 1

I drew these fish when I was in college.  One of my roommates was a wildlife major.  When I was half way through one of the fish I realized I made a HUGE mistake.  I finished the picture anyway.  Then I presented the picture to my roommate and asked if he could see anything wrong with it, but he thought it looked good.  Then I told him there was definitely something wrong with it.  He still couldn’t find anything wrong.  I finally had to tell him what it was.

Sunfish 2

Here is your challenge if you choose to accept it.  What is wrong with the picture?  I will give you one hint.  The mistake is in Sunfish 2.  A wildlife major couldn’t find it.  Can you?

Grasshoppers On The Loose

Make sure the lid is tight or your bait will get away.

I just completed this illustration for the fish story I’m working on.  The large mouth bass studies were for the same project.  The media on this one is watercolor, and pen and ink.  It was an easy one to reference, since all I had to do is revisit my childhood.  I hope you like it.

Large Mouth Bass Study 3

Large Mouth Bass Study

Here is the last one. It was all wet wash technique. I followed it with pen and ink for detail. I like the wet approach although this picture isn’t quite right for the project. Perhaps I need to do the pen and ink first. Any thoughts?

Large Mouth Bass Study 2

Large Mouth Bass Study 2

With this watercolor I used strictly dry brush technique. I followed this with pen and ink. However, I don’t think this is the style I’m looking for this project.

Large Mouth Bass Study 1

Large mouth Bass Study

I’m working on a project involving large mouth bass.  This is my first pass at a straight up watercolor.  At this point I’m getting familiar with my subject.  It is for a children’s book so this style is probably not child friendly enough.