Michael from Stillman & Birn sent me a couple of the 9x12 inch Alpha sketchbooks and I have to try them out.
This is in response to the July Creature Feature Challenge
which I am really late but it doesn't matter. I had fun! I am supposed to design a Gryphon or Griffin or any creature that is half bird half feline.
I spent over 5 hours on this page.
I chose Stillman Alpha for this one because I knew I have to transfer my sketch and the Delta would be too heavy to see through and the Epsilon couldn't take moisture.
Even though he gave me one spiral bound and one hardbound, technically, it's easier to use a lightbox with the spiral bound but I do have a love for hardbound too and I have to give it a try in any case.
Because it's a very simple design that takes only a minute or two on the corner of the page, it's no great pain to hold down the hardbound cover for a bit to trace it.
So here is my first sketch.
Oops, the wings were too small. They couldn't possibly lift up this lynx like creature.
Then my dilemma came. They want a bird and these wings are more bat like and a bat is a reptile. A lively discussion ensued among my boys and me. Yes, you could. No you can't. Yes, you could, it's art. But it's not following the guidelines.
In the end, I went ahead with my bat structured reptile wings without feathers.
Then reduced in side, I transfered and trace.
I must have put in 7 layers of watercolor on this one.
This is also the first time I used masking fluid for the creature and am at a loss as to how to finish all the uneven edges.
Added Caran D'Ache Luminance colored pencil to the creature. Voila.
A very nice opening page for my hardbound sketchbook now.
Thanks, Michael, for the big size version. It's so much easier to design on bigger space.
You could see pencil marks at the background. It was supposed to be a French castle of some sort but in the end, I went with the flow of the watercolor.
This Alpha is really sturdy. So many layers of watercolor and it's still in good shape. Not a single incident of pilling!! And when I do the colored pencil on less than 100% dry paper, it still keeps intact.
In truth, I don't know why I keep drawing strange creatures. I'm not even good at them. I don't even watch those cartoons or monster movies or seek them out in manga. I really just want to do somber backgrounds of dark deep colors and invariably, one has to put something strange in it. I have yet to study monster constructions.