This Way or That?

I posted recently about using the same image for various types of mediums. I thought I’d post a few more examples.

One of the reasons is that it just isn’t very easy to find a reference picture that a) is legal to use and b) attracts me and c) is of the right quality to use. By that, I mean that the lighting is good enough, that it is in sharp focus, and that it is high enough quality that it can be enlarged.
I tend to use royalty-free sites like Unsplash or Pexels, it seems the safest way, without getting into trouble for copyright infringement.
I then open it up in Photoshop and crop it, If I am doing it in watercolour I’ll keep it on the screen in colour, if I’m doing it in graphite, then I’ll remove the colour and print it out in black and white.

The set below shows a sparrow that I found on Unsplash. It was such a lovely picture, and it had been cut out so was not being messed around by and background.
It was such a pleasure to draw, and then I thought I’d like to paint it. I painted it twice and realised I’ve kinda messed up my brain by doing the two types of medium. With pencil, it’s trying to get in the details as clearly as possible, whereas I have always tried to be a lot looser with watercolour, and now my brain wants to be accurate but my skill set isn’t able to comply – frustration😉

watercolour picture of sparrow
watercolour picture of sparrow
Graphite picture of sparrow

If I look at the watercolours divorced from the accurate sketch then It’s ok. I need to decide what my style is I suppose.
What is becoming quite clear is that the accuracy I can get with graphite I just haven’t got the skill to do in watercolour at the moment, which does frustrate me. I think I may give watercolour a break for a while and come back to it when I have a bit more time. Or… I might not 😉

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