Pet Portrait: Topaze

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Last month our local SPCA ‘Annexe’ had a Christmas auction, where one of their prizes was a pet portrait done by me. I present to you Topaze, a Tonkinese whom I am told is very affectionate! I primarily used Promarkers and pen, with a dash of white pencil and gel pen. Read on for the original photo and initial sketch! Continue Reading

Pet Portrait: Roosevelt

CatPortrait-Roosevelt-Final

Our family suffered a great loss recently. Roosevelt, our 15-year-old Maine Coon, passed earlier this week. He was, without a doubt, my dearest furbaby, and he touched all of our hearts like no other pet had. Difficult as it was, I decided to surprise my parents with a pen & marker portrait of our boy. The process eventually grew to be therapeutic, and I am proud to have successfully captured his essence (the eyes, in particular, were heavily worked on as they needed to be p-e-r-f-e-c-t). Read on for WIP shots and a photo of our beautiful & beloved ‘gentle giant’. Continue Reading

Nature Sketching: Final Project

NatureSketching-CreatureDesign-Final

Happy Holidays! The Evergreen Squirrel is what I came up with for our final Nature Sketching assignment, in which we had to invent a creature based on our previous class (or personal) studies. Considering the number of animals we had looked at, I decided first to come up with a little backstory. Where does it live? What climate does it have to deal with? What does it eat? And so on… My initial requisites where that it had to live in Canada, being able to survive our harsh winters. And, considering the time of year, I wanted to put a hint of Christmas into the design. Wildlife biologist that I am, it also needed to be realistic and above all else, believable! Read on for more research, sketches, and process (yes, ‘back’ pine cones ARE possible)! Continue Reading

Nature Sketching: Rhinoceros Research

NatureSketching-Rhino-PenMarkers
Last week our homework for nature sketching was to research and draw a ‘large mammal’. During the class we studied from miniature models, subjects ranging from the great Canadian moose to the giant African elephant… while I love our national symbol to bits, the moose is quite the fuzzy animal, and I wanted to try something a little different… hence, the Indian Rhino. As armored as an armadillo, as warty as a toad. Perfect. Continue Reading

Nature Sketching: Drawing Dinosaurs!

NatureSketching-Dinosaur-Dromaeosaurus-Cropped
At Syn Studio this semester I’m taking a course called Nature Sketching, in which we study a different variety of animal each week. From real (albeit dead) fish we moved on to live reptiles (a snake and lizard borrowed from a local pet shop), and last week we visited McGill University’s Redpath Museum. Our homework was to push one of our dinosaur skeleton sketches further, and fully flesh out our chosen subject. I chose the raptor-like Dromaeosaurus albertensis, a local North american species. Continue Reading

Inktober: Week One & Bonus Nuggets!

Extra : LoZ Twilight Princess' Skull Kid
So this year is the first year I participate in this thing called Inktober… to be honest, it’s the first I’ve even heard of it since its conception back in 2009. Created by illustrator Jake Parker as a personal challenge, it has since grown into a worldwide phenomenon spanning the entirety of our social media globe! You can read up on it at Jake’s website, but essentially the goal is to draw in ‘ink’ every day of October (there are variations, however). I’ve already been doodling in pen each day for the past while now, so for me it’s more of a continuation of what I’m already doing. Instead, I’m trying to do some speed doodling, and various other ideas that pop into my head. Here’s a wrap up of the first week, with a few extras added for good measure ;)

As a sidenote: I’ve been posting all these (minus the extras – they’re bonus for you blog followers! ) on my instagram account, for those of you who are interested! Continue Reading

Analytical Sketching: Sum Up

Analytical-Animals
This Thursday will mark the finale of my latest course at Syn Studio, Analytical Sketching. Essentially, it revolved around building up objects and figures from lines and geometric shapes. It really helped me to build upon my basic skills, and I noticed a significant improvement in the ‘3D’ appearance of my comparatively flat sketches. We only ever used pen and markers, which forced us to commit fully to whatever marks we put down. Since then, I think I may have touched a pencil once or twice. Of course, I was already a pen fan to begin with! Here are a few highlights from throughout the 10 weeks. Continue Reading