Wednesday, March 12, 2014

Coloring a goose, Part 1

Monday I was at the park, on a rare sunny spring day (it usually rains in Oregon this time of year). The park was covered in geese, so my daughter and I tried to get them to come close enough to photograph, but without any food, they really weren't interested. I was able to snap a quick shot of one, and today I wanted to draw and color it.

Today's tutorial is the first half of coloring the goose drawing. Tomorrow I'll show you the final touches.

Coloring a Goose
Recently, I've shown you a lot of photographs the computer has converted to outlines for me. Yesterday, I drew the duck with a 0.3mm multiliner, then photocopied the drawing onto nice paper.

The overall tone of this goose is a warm gray, so I start by blocking in the basic W1 to define shadows. I didn't soak the paper too thoroughly, as I knew I would be blending more colors in. I left his white belly alone, as in the photo, you can see that is a very cool gray area, whereas the rest of the goose is warm gray.

Next, I layered in W4 for the shadows. Always look at the photo for reference on the shadows and details. On the neck, I added a few rough feathers with the W4 as well. At this point, I haven't blended anything.

The next step is to blend the W4 with the W1. Any areas that faded out too much, I let them dry and added more W4. Contrast is the key to having a believable image.

Next I added W7 for the darkest feather areas. Again, I blended it with the W4, but in areas that became too soft, I let them dry and added more W7 over the top. I was careful to keep the cheek and the top of the head as light as possible, to match the coloration from the photograph. If you look close, you can see that I applied the W7 in small, irregular strokes on the wings to simulate the edges of feathers.

For the yellow/orange beak and feet, I used Y32, Y38, and added deepest shadows with W4. I know I can shadow the yellows with Warm grays, since yellow and orange are warm colors.

 On the white belly, I colored the edges with BV20, as that is a nice, gray blue-violet to contrast the warm grays on the rest of the goose. I threw in a few hints of Y00 and W1 onto her belly, to warm up those tones as well.

Next I begin on the grass. I added YG03 as a base coat to the grass. This was applied as lots of short, irregular strokes, in kind of a scribbling pattern. Without any other colors, it already begins to look like grass. This is a great texture to practice. For best results, hold the brush more upright, as you will get finer lines.

I didn't feel like overwhelming the picture with green, so I stuck to creating a basic ground-plane for the goose to be waddling across. Even though the photo shows the whole area green, it is my artistic choice as to how much green to include.

Here is the final goose, with a few more details. I added YG09 and G28 to the grass, again in the short, crisp brush strokes. I added hints of E27 to deepen the shadows on the feet, and on some of the darker feathers. By adding brown, it gives a hint of color variety to the shadows. I also added a tiny bit of YG03 very lightly to the edge of his white belly. Although it is not in the photograph, I did this to suggest a reflection of the green from the grass.

Tomorrow I will show you a few more final touches to this goose. I hope the step-out today helped you see my process.


Ellen Taylor said...

Thanks for posting this Marianne! I love your tutorials and am always learning from you!! :)

Marie Gamber said...

Thank you Marianne! Love the step by step tutorial and using the warm and cool treys!

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