I realise that when it comes
to drawing birds I can't use my usual slow and measured
approach, where I carefully observe and record every interlocking
shape of a subject. There simply isn't time; I've got
to try and get the overall shape before the bird moves
but it's so awkward drawing through binoculars.
I try to retain an image and get that down on paper but
I can't capture everything I see. Mapping the pattern
on the head of the young great-crested grebe
didn't seem to be working; it's giving a rather wooden
effect, as if I was drawing a decoy duck.
Switching to the coots, (lower left),
dabbling close to the hide I was able to dispense with
the binoculars and work more quickly. I felt that the
quick little sketches were beginning to hint at the continuous
activity of a real live bird. I'd like to do more of this
but I think that I'd do better going somewhere people
feed the ducks, where I can sit on a bench and draw, rather
than observing through the slit of a bird hide.