I have already written about most aspects of what is asked here under the individual exercises, so I have only answered these briefly here.
What were the main challenges of drawing animals?
The main one for me was that animals move. Up until now anything that I have drawn has been pretty static and once I tried to draw a moving subject I quickly realised that my visual memory is really quite poor. I found it very difficult to fix the pose of the animal in my mind. This resulted in some quite strange proportions when I started this project, as I tended to draw the more static part of the animal first and then try and join the moving part to this, something that certainly did not work and helped me to realise just how important it is to be brave and go for the overall shape. The other main challenge for me was trying to capture the individual character of the animal as it is this that lifts the drawing and brings it to life, something that was very enjoyable to try even though I was not overly successful at present, something though that I can aspire to.
Which media did you enjoy using the most and which did you feel were best for the subject matter and why?
I enjoyed using the fibre tipped pen when I first started drawing the animals as this encouraged me to just go for it and not fiddle, if I had started in pencil I think that I would have spent my whole time rubbing out. Charcoal proved to be very well suited when I attempted some larger drawings of a friends cat, it encouraged me to be bold and was well suited to capturing the cats coat in bold strokes. I found that using coloured pencil on textured paper worked well to show the texture of the fish that I drew. Graphite pencil was very suited to capturing fine detail and nuances of shading when I used this to draw some of the animals. I actually enjoyed using all of the media that I used for this project and feel that all were well suited for the drawings that I was attempting with them, whether bold or more detailed, monochrome or colour. Charcoal, however, certainly proved to be very well suited to fast and free drawings of my friends cat.
Where can you go to draw more animals? Think about the sorts of places that will give you opportunities for animal drawing. Have you tried to draw a moving animal yet?
We have a local pond reasonably close and this would be somewhere to explore as would the local park. The local museums could also give opportunities to observe skeletons and possibly stuffed specimens and enable the close up study of these. Farms round about can have a sheep, horses or cows in their fields. All these are places that would offer further opportunities.
Most of the animals that I tried to draw for this project were moving. I found it harder to try and find some that weren’t.
I thoroughly enjoyed this project.