Saturday, October 18, 2008

The 'Hatching'

A4 size; Black pen on paper; Using a technique of ‘hatching’ and ‘cross-hatching’ for the King hatchlings ! This technique is done by drawing closely spaced parallel lines to create tonal or shading effects.

After having glued myself to Bangalore for a few months, immersed in painting, I finally got a chance to take off to the Western Ghats, where (my brother, Sandesh) and the filming crew were shooting a documentary for National Geographic about King Cobras! The crew, along with Gowri Shankar and the many volunteers at ARRS (Agumbe Rainforest Research Station) had put in many weeks of radio tracking the King, observing and recording its behavior and filming the nest building in the wild. Now, it was time for the baby kings to break open their shells and come out into their whole new wild world. And I was lucky enough to land up at Agumbe right in time for this ! It was early August.

I sat watching the heads pop out, everything in slow motion, taking their own sweet time to absorb their new surroundings and venture out boldly, leaving behind their safe haven. With their heads out, they stood in the same position, sometimes for hours together, as if everything had been paused. Thus giving me ample enough time to sit in front of them and doodle rough sketches in my field-journal. And presented above is the final sketch of the baby kings hatching. Made this after i got back to Bangalore.

Tuesday, October 07, 2008

Wild flowers from Turahalli

More of my rough -in-the-field- journal sketches !
A few wildflowers from Turahalli. Well, thanks to Ravee (, my interest in wildflowers has slowly bloomed too. Hidden between the grass, are these tiny coloured forms, so *unique* and distinct from one another.... which i would have otherwise walked past without a glance.

With over 500 species of Aristolochia around the world... I was more than priviledged to stumble upon one of its kind at Turahalli. A unique flower structure... couldn't resist but sketch it ! Am amazed by this flower and am eagerly waiting to see them in bloom again ! Its become one amongst my favourite flowers!! :) (No sooner have i said this... the very next day, a peep through my window, i saw the same Aristolochia creeper and to add to my sudden discovery... it was in bloom too!!! Can you beat that!) How i wish, similarly, all my *eagerly waiting* thoughts come true too !
The Ground Star (Curculigo orchidoies) is one amongst the common plants of Turahalli... The star shaped pretty yellow flowers grow at the base of the plant, touching the ground.
Commelina forskalaei is the kidney-shaped petals at the bottom right of the attached page. The petals are bluish.

Peeping through the grass....

Friday, October 03, 2008

Leopards on the prowl

Did these sketches a few months back. Have used the -stippling method- for two of them... its mainly by doing the whole illustration by using fine dots to show the various tones and depth.
I havn't got to see too many leopards in the wild. I got lucky to see my first leopard 3 years back in September 2005 ... two in one day @ Bandipur NP. Will remain as the most unforgetful interesting day for me. Had also got to see my first sloth bear on the same day too! There was no limits to my joy that day! :)
Amongst the many leopard sketches i did... i guess i can pick out just these three that can be kinda -showable- to people. The one below, i used indian ink. However, i did prefer the stipplings better.After doing these leopard sketches, i have realised how difficult it is to sketch the cat family. Especially, all those spots on the leopard !! *sigh* !!