Painting Demonstration 1
I begin with very light drybrush on the chick looking at me. I'm starting with just 3 pigments, nickel azo yellow, cobalt violet and quinacridone rust. The chick is covered in light, fluffy down, so my brush strokes need to stay very light.
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Painting Demonstration 2
I darken and dull the shadows with cobalt violet and a touch of quinacridone rust. I lightly sketch a shadow to ground it.
Painting Demonstration 3
I start painting the flapping chick with quinacridone rust and nickel azo yellow. This chick is in motion, trying out her wings, so she'll be a little more blurred than the first.
Artist's TipsKeep your brush stokes dry and light for the fluffy down.
Painting Demonstration 4
More cool shadows and a lot of splatter! Have fun with the splattering. It keeps things loose and not serious!
Painting Demonstration 5
Add a little bit of focus to the face by painting the eye. I'm going back with a flick of white gouache later so I don't reserve a white reflection.
The feathers are so much fun to paint. Just sweep your brush lightly along each distinct feather. Remember, only one side of a feather is an angle. The other side has different lighting!
Painting Demonstration 6
A bit more shadows, just building up the fluff! This is where it's very easy to get too heavy, so keep each layer light and work around the sketch.
Painting Demonstration 7
Finishing up the details. Don't forget bird's legs are segmented, so they reflect in striations.
I finished with a few touches of white gouache on the eyes and a faint blur on the raised leg. I also softened the highlight on the raised leg a little.
This is such a fun little sketch. I really enjoyed doing it and the memories of my kids and dog running around herding the chickens.
As you are painting, the only thing to keep in mind is keep a light hand. I showed my palette in the YouTube video so you could see there weren't puddles of pigment, but just dry scribbles. When you're painting a baby's portrait you barely touch the paper - same thing with these babies!
I hope this inspires you to go paint spring!
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