HOME


ONLINE GALLERY OF PAINTINGS


FRAMING


ARTIST'S HISTORY


ADVENTURES IN NATURE




ONLINE GALLERY OF MAMMALS


EARLY ARTWORK 1990-1996


EARLY ARTWORK 1997 - 2001


BOOK ILLUSTRATIONS


PRINTS


MAPS


WINE


LINKS


SKETCHES


THE ANATOMY OF FLIGHT




w w w . j a y j j o h n s o n . c o m

JOHNSON / ORIGINAL PAINTINGS OF WILDLIFE

: SKETCHES






978-468-3286
jjlmjohnson@comcast.net

 



SKETCHING

 

I have always enjoyed drawing.  It's one of my most pleasurable memories of childhood.  Today, using
an Derwent pencils (5B - 8B), I begin to study the form of animals by quickly sketching them.  These
sketches may range from 4 minutes to 14 minutes, as I attempt to capture what is important about
their shape.  
    If an animal remains sitting or standing for this period, I may sketch it from life. But since I focus on
movement, I find it helpfull to record the movements first with video, then "pause" it while sketching.  
    Most of the sketches I do never become paintings.  Instead sketching is a means of not only under-
standing form, but also of keeping my drawing skills sharpened.  Like any other exercise (physical or
mental) it takes daily repetition.

SP%20Hairy%20Woodpecker%201%206X100%20A%20JPG.jpg       
Before gettng out the paints each day, I select a species and open my computer files for a half-hour 
"work-out.".  The monitor image is my reference.  Setting a timer for 5 minutes, I start drawing,
completing each study before the beep of the alarm goes off.  Immediately I move on to the next image,
working non-stop for the next 30 minutes until I've nearly filled up a sheet of paper.   

 


A single quick-sketch of an Inca Dove landing

 


Nuthatch balancing on a branch

 


Chickadee taking off 
The highlights on the upper wing were made by a few strokes of a kneaded eraser.

 


With a little more time (10 - 15 minutes) I sometimes develop the sketch by adding
shading & highlights.  Here a Solitary Sandpiper is shown in flight.

 

 
I used the broad side of the pencil for this sketch of a Hummingbird.

 


Kingbird Perching
The number at the right side refers to the image file ID# in my computer. 
If a sketch seems to offer potential for becoming a painting, this info
helps me find it again later.

 

 
This is from a series of Tufted Puffin sketchs I did one morning, bearing down heavier
on the pencil than usual - hence the darker lines.




SP%20LYWAM%20Albatross%20_02%207X100%20A%20jpg.jpg
Royal Albatross 
     I made dozens of sketches of albatross before beginning the painting "Royal Albatross Approaching Land" 
(see Painting Gallery).  The sketch shown here is a grouping of my favorites done for the Leigh Yawkey Woodson Art
Museum's collection of drawings.  I had made these sketches on seperate sheets of paper, so I first had to transfer
them to this sheet by rubbing, laying down faint outlines on the paper to serve as guidelines as I re-drew each using
the computer monitor for reference.  
    When conveying motion in a painting I like to get familiar with a bird from all angles.   
Like a sculptor I feel that I 
should know what it looks like when turned 360 degrees. 

SP%20LYWAM%20Albatross%20_02%20crop%202%204.5X100%20jpg.jpg
A close-up from the above group sketch.


SP%20LYWAM%20Albatross%20_02%20G%20crop%203.5X100%20jpg.jpg
Even closer

 

 

 

 
















Sign In