A Harris Hawk named Blade

People are interested in how a painting develops so when I was commissioned to paint a juvenile Harris Hawk I photographed the painting as it evolved and hopefully this will shed some light on my own creative process. In this instance I was unable to see the hawk and worked entirely from the owners photographs, this is not how I normally work but as the photographs were of a good standard I felt OK about taking the job.

Harris Hawk early stages

The first stage involves a careful drawing which is transferred onto the prepared board.

The next image illustrates that I have worked the eyes and head to an advanced stage and largely ignored the rest of the bird. This is unusual as I normally rough in the bulk of the painting before attempting a finished look, but as I was using a photograph as my only reference, I wanted to establish the colour of the plumage at an early stage.

Harris Hawk final touches

Now that I am happy with the colouring of the plumage on the head of Blade, the painting is blocked in to etablish colour values and remove the distraction of white board.