The poet Marjorie Allen Seiffert said, “A bird is three things: feathers, flight and song, and feathers are the least of these.” In this class we will approach the drawing of birds from a similar angle. In the beginning weeks of the class we will explore the basic shapes and gestures that gives each bird it’s wren-ness, or egret-ness, or hawk-ness in a welcoming and supportive environment. We will learn to look not only at the contours of a bird but the rhythms, forms and proportions that inform those contours. We will work from photographs, from living and preserved birds, as well as from images of avian art in art history.
What you will learn:
How to simplify the complex shapes of birds
How to capture gesture and expression
Techniques for drawing birds from the field to the studio
An introduction to avian anatomy for artists
A variety of wood or mechanical pencils: 2H, H, HB, 2B, 4B, 6B Appropriate sharpeners for wood and/or mechanical pencils
A variety of erasers including gum, kneaded, and white Factis eraser
Spiral bound drawing pad that folds back or lays flat. Strathmore 400 recommended.
Watercolor pad with hot press paper such as Fluid 100 no larger than 9×12 Tortillion (smudgers)
Roll of white graphic tape
Optional: drawing board, camera or camera phone
Midway through the term students will need: colored pencils, watercolor, or pastel (whichever you are most familiar with).