The day was disappearing, and I still hadn’t made a picture. Quick! Grab a pad and some materials! I thought I might revisit using the calligraphy ink in water and draw some of our chickens as they foraged around the plentiful molehills. I threw in an extra hand of corn just to keep their attention while I sketched…
I’d had fun using this technique before, when I inked some of the wild birds passing through our garden (here) and just fancied having another go. I sketched the outlines of the chickens, then wet the area with a brush. The next step was to dip a small brush into the ink and bleed it into the wet area, trying to control to some degree where the lights and darks appeared. One of the joys of this technique is that it’s very quick, and doesn’t require a host of materials to be laid out.
I was trying to achieve ‘featheriness’ as our red girls are quite blowsy. Finding a way to contrast them with our black chicken was a bit of a challenge.
For anyone who’s interested, there are two types of chickens here – the slimmer black sketches are of an Old English Game hen, and the others are traditional red hybrid hens.