Wildlife Art – Realistic Graphite Pencil Drawing of Mallard
The reason I strive to produce realistic graphite pencil drawings of wildlife to the best of my ability is a selfish one. It feeds my endless fascination with the sheer beauty of wildlife, and that includes the humblest of species that surround us every day. Today I’d like to talk a little about a drawing that has become my most successful piece to date, quite surprisingly to me!
I remember that day when this little duck posed for me so patiently on the riverside near my home. I was able to get many reference photos of him preening and this is the one that caught my eye. I just worked up a quick composition placing him on the water and using light reflections to gently guide the eye to his face. Nothing else was needed!
In 2016 it was also selected as Ducks Unlimited Canada’s national sponsor print. I’m so pleased that it played a small role in protecting Canadian habitat!
“Mallard” was also selected for inclusion in North Light Books’ Art Journey Animals. While quantities last, I am proud to offer Art Journey Animals in combination with an Artist’s Proof of “Mallard” on my Reproductions page. From North Light books’ website: “Art Journey Animals is the first-ever compendium of the most soulful and inspiring animal and wildlife artworks, culled from the winners of North Light’s popular competition-books series. More than 100 hand-selected drawings and paintings by a wide variety of top contemporary artists have been carefully curated to capture the wonder of nature, from the family room to the farm and the sea to the savanna.”
Here’s a short time-lapse video of of the work-in progress for this drawing. Hope you enjoy it!
As always if you have any comments or questions please let me know! I enjoy hearing from you!
I thought that the best way to present my portfolio would be in a short video, so here we go!
These are some of my favourite pieces, and I’ll be discussing some of them individually in later blogs. In some cases landscape was the inspiration for which animal to use, and in other cases a personal experience or memory triggered an idea for a composition. Often the sheer beauty of an animal was all that was needed. Sometimes you just have to draw what you love!
Many of these are available as limited edition prints on my reproductions page. I hope you enjoy the video, and as always if you have any comments or questions please let me know!
I am a Canadian wildlife artist who uses graphite, pen and ink and mixed media to create my wildlife art.
I’ve been featuring artists I admire on my new facebook page and I thought it was high time I introduced myself, Laurene Spino, a Canadian wildlife artist working in graphite, pen and ink and occasionally other mixed media.
My journey towards art is a little convoluted but it’s definitely rooted in a deep sense of wonder, fascination, curiosity, love and admiration of the natural world that surrounds us. I was that kid who was perfectly happy laying in the grass watching an ant laboriously work its way up one side of a blade of grass and down the other. I still am.
I thought I would start with some sentimental favourites. These early works are in pen and ink, a medium which I still enjoy.
I intentionally left these wolves unfinished because I wanted the focus to be on those powerful paws. Wolves are wonderful subjects both because they’re such beautiful animals and because of their strong bond to pack members. Their complex behaviour within the pack gives us almost endless ideas for composition.
Working on the bark texture in this next drawing was almost as much fun as working on the feathers! Information on the University of Michigan website states “Red-tailed hawks also communicate through body language. In an aggressive posture, the body and head of a red-tailed hawk are held upright, and its feathers are standing up.”I don’t know if this hawk was displaying true aggression or simply warning an unseen foe, but that proud pose begged to be drawn!
I’d love to blog about technique, composition, natural history or anything else you’d like to discuss. If you have any questions, comments or suggestions about what you’d like to see on this blog, please let me know! I’ll do my best to answer any questions you may have. Please visit my limited edition printson my reproductions page.