Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Tough seabirds

Stared the painting after a ton of studies on seagulls. I wanted a slighly tough-looking girl since gulls are such badasses:

For the flocks of birds storming to the background I used a very abstract approach. First I tried to imagine two or three groups of birds and the overall shape of each group. I want their motion to kinda point to the main figure, so I thought of a few triangles. The lines going across each triangle are to suggest that they have different orientations in the 3D space:

Then I just drew the birds keeping into account these triangles and their inner lines, so that the lines of action of the birds follow them. This should give the flock a believable 3D look and keep the picture readable. I did this after several days of drawing seagulls to get a hold of their shape from various angles...

Some of these are loosely based on photos but most were drawn from imagination after a bit of warming up.


  1. Happy horse! :p

    I always really liked seagulls, when I lived down on the coast. Which was not an opinion shared by many, I realize, but they really are an interesting sort of creature.

    I'm curious about the yellow dot by some of the sketches on the last image - are those ones you thought went well with the image as a whole?

    I always really enjoy reading (and looking) through these preperatory works. I love that insight into how you get where you go.

    And it's... very entertaining puzzling through the Italian commands. I wonder why Blogspot doesn't show things like 'post' in the reader's language, rather than the writer's?

  2. Più che "badass," i gabbiani sono uccelli veramente stronzi.
    L'anno scorso ero in Francia, per una campagna. La nave era in porto e con i marinai si stava facendo una grigliata sul ponte. Un paio di salsicce/wurstel cadono in mare e subito i gabbiani di varie specie cominciano ad avvicinarsi. Uno di questi si tuffa, pesca il wurstel e subito scappa, inseguito dal resto dello stormo. Dopo un minuto di inseguimenti, lo costringono a lasciar cadere il cibo; immediatamente, un altro gabbiano se ne re-impossessa e il ciclo riprende.
    Uno stormo di stronzi, veramente.
    Bellissimi studi, comunque, sono curioso di vedere il risultato finale.


  3. Stormdancer: I was putting dots near the sketches which are more or less based on photos, though I might use a couple of them anyway as they are not identical copies. I use photos/videos to see how the animals look like from odd angles and then try to draw the same pose from scratch, to get a feeling for that animal's looks.
    About the language I thought the blog was already displayed using the reader's account's language! But turns out everything follows the blog language setting, I changed it to English now.

    MikeT: vi è andata bene che non vi hanno aggredito sfilandovi direttamente i wurstel dalla forchetta, perchè sono anche capaci di fare quello. X-D