A Riot of Whimsy

I hope you're not tired of these little watercolor creatures and critters because they keep coming off my brush in a riot of whimsy.  

I fill a sheet of watercolor paper with pale red, grey, and cream-colored blobs, leaving the white of the paper where the eyes will be.  Then I start shading with a water-soluble pencil: under the eyes, under the arms, legs, horns and so on.  I add more layers of watercolor in these shaded areas, using Payne's grey as my shadow color.  (Love, love, LOVE Payne's grey!  Probably the most useful color in my entire watercolor palette!)

Once the shading is in place and completely dry, I start adding details with a black Micron and use a white gel pen to highlight teeth.  When everything is finished, I cut the creatures out and start planning the collage backgrounds.

I keep the backgrounds deliberately simple: I want these critters to have some room to live and breathe.  Most of the time, the backgrounds are made up of layered paper rectangles & washi tape strips but occasionally, as in the case of the goldfishy, I create a little collage environment.  I don't overthink any part of this process.  I just try and let things evolve naturally.


Melanie said…
I like them all. You gave me a good idear for my next chalange. At the moment I challanged myself to make 100 faces. I'm alteady on face 65. Maby my next challange will be fantasy creaters...
Liefs, Melanie
Snap said…
I love your critters -- they make me smile! Happy Monday Morning!
Natasha said…
I love your little characters. I have recently read Carla Sonheim's book about drawing imaginary animals and she has a similar exercise in there. I have a page of shapes waiting for me :)

I think the backgrounds really work to show off your characters.

Stunning work!