Painting in Acrylics: “Indy the Cockatiel”

Painting a Pet

Back in around February 2017, following on from my friend reigniting my creativity, I was inspired to try painting again thanks to the BBC show “The Big Painting Challenge”. I bought a few tubes of acrylic paint, some brushes and paper, and gave it a go. This was the result…

The subject I chose was my family’s pet Indy the cockatiel. In hindsight, this wasn’t perhaps the best choice of subject given Indy is a mostly white bird, making it more challenging as white makes it difficult to get the tones right, without making the subject to grey.  I think in some places I’ve fallen into the “making the white too grey trap”, but mostly it’s OK.

I painted it over the course of a number of weeks, where I’d spent between fifteen minutes to an hour adding to it, but the exact number of hours spent I’m not sure.

I used a couple of reference photographs, but as I was familiar with the subject, there was a bit of a risk that I’d assume I knew what I was painting, and wouldn’t quite paint things as they really appeared.  This was a tip I picked up from the painting TV show I mentioned.

I’m particularly happy with the nose and beak, both of which were actually the parts I was least happy and were the last parts of the painting I completed. I know I didn’t quite get the crest right, and the birds chest is too cinnamon, but I still really like the end result.

There were things I would change if I did it again, but one thing I’ve learned is that when you’re happy with a piece, you should know when it’s complete, as overworking can mean you lose what you liked about it.

I’m very pleased with the end result, so much so that it hangs pride of place above my TV in my living room. It feels a little weird hanging my own work up, but what the hell!

Thanks for visiting,

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