Saturday, May 21, 2016

Two Little Birdies Sitting in a Tree

Work in Progress -"Pair of Nesting Bluebirds"
Most of this week I have been focused on sketching a pair of blue and a little bird nest in a tree branch.  I thought that this concept might make a good gift for a wedding or anniversary.  In my first sketch I have left it incomplete at this point because I could either include eggs in the nest or I thought putting two hearts in the nest might work well for the gift idea.

One thing that I really think is important and I have learned this lesson the hard way.  I know scan my sketches when I have finished the pen and ink work and before I begin to apply any color or consider background treatments.  I don't want to ruin my original and regret a decision later which will result in my having to start all over again.
Trying out different mediums and treatments-One is Watercolor and the other is Colored Pencils
The first copy I did was on a piece of letter size card stock.   I took that copy and applied an abstract watercolor background and finished off the nest by hearts.  The second one is again copied on card stock but I printed it as a 5 x 7 which made it smaller than the first.  This one I used Prismacolor Premium Pencils and added a ink background of small circles.  I really liked the colored pencil one but I felt I had made the nest too dark.  So when I do get ready to finish the original sketch I have a much better I idea of how I want to handle it.

Bird Nest with Eggs- Pen and Ink only
I started a similar sketch just this morning while enjoying my coffee.  I just find bird nests to be so fascinating and the detail pen work is a real challenge.  I really like how this one is turning out even if there are no birds to be found in my composition.  

I had some struggles with the first nest sketch of the week.  It wasn't until after I had it drawn it all out I began to realize that most bluebirds build their nest in holes it seems.  Here I have them building their nest on a branch.  This is what comes from depending on reference photos and not have live subjects to study.  While the Mountain Bluebird is the Nevada state bird, they must only be in the mountains up north as I have never seen one down here in Southern Nevada.  The Mountain Bluebird also doesn't have the orange belly feathers that we see in my most recognizable bluebird species.  They are still magnificently blue and therefore beautiful but just not as stunning as the ones with orange feathers.

So this nest is just a nest with two tiny blue eggs. That of course leads to the question, "What type of bird lays blue eggs?"  Well surprisingly there are a number of species.  Of course the robin is well known along with the bluebird but there are also starlings and mockingbirds and cowbirds to name a few. 

Either way, no matter why exact species of birds nest this is that I'm drawing, I hope you enjoying my sketches this week half as much as I didn't drawing them. 

My original sketches are 8 x 10 draw on Strathmore Bristol acid free art paper and are matted to a standard 11 x 14 for easy framing.  I will also have matted prints in various sizes available.  I will be adding these drawings to a collection of greeting cards that feature birds if you are interested they are available on my country store gallery on my website at

"Bird Nest with Blue Eggs"- Pen and Ink w/Colored Pencil

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