These were some quick sketches for some ideas that were whizzing around in my head...Some came from my own photos and some from photos that I have kindly been given permission to use. It's always good to work like this as it develops ideas in your mind, that lead to paintings further on.
I had played with some ink work in a previous short course I took at Adult Education a few years back and really enjoyed it. I was then inspired by some wonderful work I had seen by Sharon Williams.
I had a photo of a white lion I had taken a couple of years ago and never yet got round to painting. they have so many colours in them and this was the ideal opportunity to try it out. After lightly drawing the main lion in pencil, I very quickly and loosely went over some of the lines with an ink pen. If you do this, don't ink around it all and try not to be too accurate as it has a much better effect. Then it was on with the washes, mostly wet in wet . Adding in colours and watching them mingle and granulate, I love that part. This was a chance to try out colours and effects to see what worked.
This actually turned out a whole lot better than I anticipated which of course is always the way when you are not trying for a masterpiece. The problem was, as I was playing, it was painting on the back of another sketch. This was by no means wasted as it had allowed me to experiment, and there were parts I wasn't keen on so could take all this forward to another painting.
I drew this out again and took more time to get it as accurate as I could without getting too bogged down with detail. A first I wasn't sure I would capture this little guy in the way I had done in the previous painting, which is often the case when working with watercolour in this way. It has a certain part of it that is uncontrollable and unpredictable, but then that is what gives it it's individuality. I soon went from being unsure to being so pleased with it the more I worked on it. There are lots of subtle washes in the face that you can't seem to capture with the camera, but it's almost there.