A very wise chimpanzee

Chimp watercolour

For this portrait of a chimp, I did not use my sketchbook as I wanted to do a bigger painting and used instead  a square sheet of watercolour paper .Searching for photos (copyright free) I found such a wise looking little chap that I adopted it straight away. It is strange sometimes to paint animals as they seem to take a life of their own. For this one particularly, I had even a name coming through my mind…

So cute !

So cute

Watercolour and gouache portraits on a unified background. I like to use different subjects to paint and make them appear on a double page as a whole. I try to incorporate elements of design to give a sense of balance to the recto/verso spread of my watercolour sketchbook.

Black bird

black bird

Did you know that the well-known English nursery rhyme “Sing a Song of Sixpence a pocket full of rye, four-and-twenty blackbirds, baked in a pie” could have been a coded message used to recruit crew members for the notorious 18th-century pirate Blackbeard.  His real name Teach was a shrewd and calculating leader who spurned the use of force, relying instead on his fearsome image to elicit the response that he desired from those whom he robbed…

Swan

Swan

I did this sketch using on purpose the elegant writer pen which bleeds when you touch the line with water. I liked the result which gives a watery colour to the feathers.

I found a Thai proverb  matching very well my double spread. Very meaningful!

Marmots are coming out

MarmotsMarmots painted in watercolour and pen brush in my watercolour sketchbook.

Marmots can be seen in our region in the Mercantour National Park, North of the French Riviera running along the border with Italy. Marmots typically live in burrows, and hibernate there through the winter. Burrows can be as deep as 7 meters (22 feet).

They generally begin hibernating in late September and survive entirely on their fat reserves accumulated during the Summer.

They emerge through the snow in April and early May (now), during which time there may be nothing to eat, and when they are especially vulnerable to predators..

Puffins nicknamed “sea parrots”

Puffin

From my Moleskine sketchbook a double page done with watercolour and brush pen.

As ideal subject for a black ink brush pen sketch, here are a few facts about these lovely birds : “Atlantic puffin is a small bird. It weighs 0.5 kilograms (17.5 ounces) and can reach 25 centimetres (10 inches) in length. Males are slightly bigger than females. Nicknamed ‘sea parrots‘ – and sometimes ‘clowns of the sea‘! – Atlantic puffins have black and white feathers and a large parrot-like beak. Puffins are fab flyers, flapping their wings up to 400 times a minute and speeding through the air at up to 88km/h (55 mp/h).”

Happy Easter

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Little chicks hatching. I can’t think of a better symbol for new life and cheerfulness which are for me what Easter is about. I wish you a great celebration and for the young and not so young a succesful egg hunt!