View Full Version : Sandhill Crane

05-30-2014, 02:13 PM
This is my first go at scratching a bird... Feathers are very new to me. I started this as practice for a larger version of the same bird but with the rest of the body, but I think I'll hold off on it for now as do some more small practice ones. I don't feel like I have a good grasp on feathers yet. I don't love the beak either. I'd love suggestions on how to improve this piece... CC would be appreciated!


05-30-2014, 02:55 PM
Good job Kendall! I think the feathers are convincing, thought I'm about to start my first bird and I've been wondering how to do feathers and a smooth beak as well! I'll be watching for what others suggest! Thanks for sharing!

05-30-2014, 05:07 PM
It has a nice, impressionistic feel. Are you going for super realism?

Snow Dance
05-30-2014, 07:36 PM
Kendall, I really like this piece. I live in south central Colorado, and every spring we go over to Monte Vista to watch and photograph the cranes dancing. This work is very very CRANE, the feathers, the beak, everything--just very nice.


Harry Seymour
05-31-2014, 08:24 AM
Lovely coloring and great scratching.

05-31-2014, 08:58 AM
Have you seen this sticky thread on feathers and fur?
I think what you have started is beautiful. I wonder if you smoothed the crosshatching on the beak if you would like it better? The coloring and values look very believable, especially on the back of the head and neck.

05-31-2014, 12:10 PM
Really nice work! Beautiful coloring and lighting. :)

06-01-2014, 10:42 AM
I think you did a really nice job on this crane!

06-01-2014, 03:12 PM
I really think there is nothing wrong with this. It is a lovely piece of work

06-02-2014, 02:31 AM
It looks really good. I have only done feathers once and it was with a FG brush, io I am no help there. Perhaps a reflection in its eye?

06-02-2014, 08:49 AM
Lovely work Kendall, I really like the colouring! The sticky thread on fur and feathers pointed out by Sandra is extremely useful and definitely worth a read. What tools did you use?

06-04-2014, 12:48 PM
Thanks everyone.

Ginger- I am trying for photo realism, but I do stylize some. So I guess I'd say I go for a combination.

Irfran- I started with a fg brush, but did it very lightly. All of the layering on top of that is with an exacto.

Sandra- Thanks, I'll try that.

06-05-2014, 08:21 PM
Love it!!!

06-05-2014, 08:40 PM
I like how you've handled it, Kendall. Not sure you need to do much more to it. It may not be hyper realistic, but I really like the effect you've achieved.

Minor things are that he could use a highlight in his eye and to smooth out the small bump on the top center of his beak.

I did a sandhill crane last year. Here's the post if you'd like to see it: http://www.wetcanvas.com/forums/showpost.php?p=19830161&postcount=33

And there's a close-up of the beak in this post: http://www.wetcanvas.com/forums/showpost.php?p=19823711&postcount=18

06-18-2014, 04:23 PM
I'm not sure what you think is off with your feathers and beaks, they both look quite believable. I do agree with Ann's suggestions above about the bump on the beak and the need for a catch light on the eye.