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Old Monday 21st January 2013, 12:35   #1
joroco
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John Costello Art 2013

Hi all! I haven't logged in here for a long time now, I plan on getting in to the habit of showing art work here for you all to see. Several of you are already on my Facebook and you are all more than welcome to comment, leave feedback and critique..

I have decided to start the year with at least 30 minutes sketching wildlife and nature (from my own photos taken over the past few years) ever day to get some practice in ready for spring for some field sketching (never really done it before).

First is a digital sketch of a Magpie sat in the tree outside the other day - colouring is just rough, my main aim is to grasp the shape and dimensions of the birds at the moment more than colouring.

A late Happy New Year to you all

John
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Old Tuesday 22nd January 2013, 07:08   #2
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Hi John and welcome back!
Interesting Magpie study! Looking forward to see more...

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Old Tuesday 22nd January 2013, 19:46   #3
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Hi John and welcome back!
Interesting Magpie study! Looking forward to see more...

Paschalis
Looks good. Nice and simple, something I often have a hard time with...........
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Old Wednesday 23rd January 2013, 09:26   #4
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Some more digital from my photos

Still having trouble with proportions and always seem to either stretch or squash horizontally or vertically some part of the drawing..

Here are some more digital sketches, all in the name of practice.

Couldn't resist testing colour on the Great Crested Grebe even though some angles and proportions are wrong, I just love the orange/red tones around the face.

Welcome any criticism on the shapes and if you can see from the sketches what the birds are? If I have managed in anyway to capture the essence of the bird?

Thanks, John
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Old Wednesday 23rd January 2013, 12:49   #5
Oskar Moilanen
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Looking great! I musk ask what application are you using to draw?
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Old Wednesday 23rd January 2013, 19:19   #6
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Looking great! I musk ask what application are you using to draw?
Hi Oskar,

At the moment all done in Photoshop, I have Sketchbook Pro as well but haven't quite got the hang of it yet. What are you using? I seen you done some digital as well.. Your drawings in pencil are fantastic, have you tried sketching in the field yet?
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Old Wednesday 23rd January 2013, 20:59   #7
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Hi Oskar,

At the moment all done in Photoshop, I have Sketchbook Pro as well but haven't quite got the hang of it yet. What are you using? I seen you done some digital as well.. Your drawings in pencil are fantastic, have you tried sketching in the field yet?
I'm using Photoshop as well, I'm very new to it so I thought I'd ask how you got the background textured like that? Looks nice imitating some paper instead of just plain white.
Thank you! I haven't done any field sketching yet but will be giving it a go in springtime. Was thinking of making rough sketches and taking notes on details in the field, then finishing the work digitally on the computer later on.
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Old Wednesday 23rd January 2013, 21:56   #8
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Hi Oskar,

At the moment all done in Photoshop, I have Sketchbook Pro as well but haven't quite got the hang of it yet. What are you using? I seen you done some digital as well.. Your drawings in pencil are fantastic, have you tried sketching in the field yet?
that's great stuff the grebe, especially done in Photoshop (I was guessing Corel painter, which is what the Spanish digibird-painters seem to use)
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Old Wednesday 23rd January 2013, 23:03   #9
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that's great stuff the grebe, especially done in Photoshop (I was guessing Corel painter, which is what the Spanish digibird-painters seem to use)
Thanks, I tried a trial version of Corel Painter and their "real watercolour/oil/acyrlic" brushes but it seemed to eat up my processor and slow the computer and tablet down far too much.. I bet it's fine on a Mac though..
Is there anyone I should look up that does digital? I haven't managed to find many people that do yet.
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Old Wednesday 23rd January 2013, 23:08   #10
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Had a go at a Whinchat today that I photographed close to home last spring, best photos of the species yet.. digital sketched this afternoon and some base colours then finished him off now. I done some adjustments to make a light/glowing version as well.. not sure what's best?

Slightly unsure about the background as well, it's similar to as it is on the photo plus some added colour but maybe it could be more interesting a different way or colour?

Anyway pretty fun testing my way forwards, if only time let me play more.. back to studies tomorrow .. maybe :)
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Old Wednesday 23rd January 2013, 23:09   #11
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I'm using Photoshop as well, I'm very new to it so I thought I'd ask how you got the background textured like that? Looks nice imitating some paper instead of just plain white.
Thank you! I haven't done any field sketching yet but will be giving it a go in springtime. Was thinking of making rough sketches and taking notes on details in the field, then finishing the work digitally on the computer later on.
I took a sample colour from Museum Pastel Paper and then on a new layer added a texture and set the layer style to Overlay and reduced the opacity
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Old Thursday 24th January 2013, 12:16   #12
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The first Stonechat picture works for me both have an Acrylics feel to them very impressed sir.
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Old Thursday 24th January 2013, 12:27   #13
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The first Stonechat picture works for me both have an Acrylics feel to them very impressed sir.
Thank you thank you, my wife said the first one as well..
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Old Thursday 24th January 2013, 12:30   #14
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Is there anyone I should look up that does digital? I haven't managed to find many people that do yet.
Dave B put me onto some of the Spanish, where there seems to be plenty going on although I haven't been following digi too closely lately. Here's Ojea:

http://www.ojeailustraciones.es/alb14.html

plus this fellow

http://pinceladasdenaturaleza.blogsp...%B3n%20digital

I think some (many) of the illutrations in the latest Handbook of Mammals of the World were digi: very good, but slightly undercoloured I thought [unless that was the printing].
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Old Thursday 24th January 2013, 14:09   #15
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Stunning Whinchat John!
(I think some (many) of the illutrations in the latest Handbook of Mammals of the World were digi: very good, but slightly undercoloured I thought [unless that was the printing].[/quote]

They are all digital Ed, painted by Catalan illustrator Toni Llobet..

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Old Friday 25th January 2013, 13:11   #16
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Been working on this recently, how does it hold up as an illustration? Can you identify the species? I haven't done the beak yet nor the neck/chest..

Actual size of the bird on the screen is 22.95cm from head to toe, almost 17cm tall without the legs. My aim would be to work large and size down to be used in print.. How do other illustrators work?

Does anyone have experience or tips on illustrating for books/guides/information leaflets etc.. ?

Thanks, John
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Old Sunday 27th January 2013, 21:43   #17
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The Whinchat is awesome! I prefer the left one, the right one is a becomes a bit flat in comparison.
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Old Monday 28th January 2013, 21:39   #18
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been real busy with everything but drawing/painting... more busy days ahead.. had to have a quick sketch again before continuing both work and studies..

A Goshawk photographed the other morning not too far from home, only the second time I have seen them stationary, always just get quick glimpses as they fly over..

Colour palette and colour mixing plus reference photo included ..

Enjoy, comment and criticise
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Old Monday 28th January 2013, 21:44   #19
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Not sure if I uploaded before but I was going through my scanned folder on the computer and seen this, a watercolour of 2 Common Terns from a fantastic birding island off the coast of Stockholm.
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Old Wednesday 6th February 2013, 19:34   #20
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Some digital painting for a website design I'm working on about species numbers of endangered animals - rhino, spoon billed sand, some mountain goat, a water buffalo and elephants right tusk to do. Learnt loads and really enjoyed it! :)
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Old Friday 8th February 2013, 18:32   #21
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Some digital painting for a website design I'm working on about species numbers of endangered animals - rhino, spoon billed sand, some mountain goat, a water buffalo and elephants right tusk to do. Learnt loads and really enjoyed it! :)
Like this image a lot John, Gorilla adds a nice presence..
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Old Friday 12th April 2013, 21:04   #22
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Recent and not so recent

Been really busy with everything but painting/drawing, the little I have done I thought I would share.

Here is a Fieldfare, Waxwing head and Goldcrest I painted in the winter, all done from my own reference photos (same applies for the rest I upload unless I say on the rest I upload)
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Old Friday 12th April 2013, 21:06   #23
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Hawfinch and bee-eater from youtube video, Lapwing and White-wagtail from my own photos
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Old Friday 12th April 2013, 21:08   #24
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Goosander in watercolour. Little Grebe and Water Rail in a cheap pen, washed over with water.
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Old Friday 12th April 2013, 21:10   #25
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Goldeneye - watercolour, no pencil drawing.
Great Black-backed Gull, charcoal
Wren - pencil sketch then watercolour
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