My painting process – gouache

In 2004 I was working on a small painting of a flying Ferruginous Hawk, and I scanned the work at several stages to show the progression from pencil sketch to finished painting. I created an annotated slideshow from those scans for my 2009-10 exhibit at the Mass Audubon Museum of American Bird Art. Now the slideshow is uploaded here. It shows each of the five scans and includes a brief commentary on my painting process at each stage.

Click the slides below to browse the series.

11 thoughts on “My painting process – gouache”

  1. What’s about a different book next time….”how to sketch and draw birds” by D. Sibley?

    I would buy it! I am currently starting to draw birds, from pictures – mostly because it helps me to remember field marks, not for the result (terribly bad), and I don’t really know where or how to start.

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    1. Hi Bob, It’s a pleasure to hear from you. I’ve been an admirer of your work (and your brothers’), and embarrassed that I just discovered this comment here without a reply! I do not varnish my paintings at all, and I can imagine that varnishing gouache would be very tricky, since it would absorb some of the varnish, unlike acrylics or oils. Best, David

  3. Graham Montgomery

    Hi David, I was looking forward to checking out your painting technique, but it looks like the link is broken – it shows a 404 not found error. Maybe the album got removed somehow?



  4. Enjoyed very much seeing slide show of your painting process – will remember it as I use your guides. Made me want to try to draw birds myself.

    Hummingbirds very busy now
    in northern Idaho…

    Thanks David –
    Donna Holmes
    University of Idaho Biology Dept.

  5. Link is fine now, thank you! Would love to see another; did you find one more challenging to paint than another?

    Jean Harrison

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