Weekly Sketch – Barn Owl – 01/01/2017

Happy New Year to you all!

I am starting the new year with lower back pain, which means I can’t do any printing as it hurts too much. I have been drawing and painting Barn Owls over Christmas. Such a beautiful bird. Initial sketches transform into patterned forms.

(© Catherine Cronin)



Weekly Sketch – Birds – 06/07/2016

Here are some more pen drawings from June; most are after coloured images with no backgrounds of birds in a book from the 1960s, and the barn owl is after a British Library card coloured image with no background. As I am not lucky enough to see such birds in the flesh, I have to use other sources for information and inspiration. I think that if I use enough different sources to get to know the birds characteristics, I can then draw my own original represenation of these birds.





(© Catherine Cronin)


Weekly Sketch – Centaurea Clementei – 04/07/2016

I haven’t been able to find the time to post my weekly sketches recently; here is one from May after a visit to Kew Gardens. ‘Centaurea Clementei’ a wildflower of Andalucia, it has lovely silvery velvet soft foliage and a fantastic spiky yellow flower head like a thistle. I’ve drawn it in marker pens for which I had limited colours, hence the difference in colour.

Centaurea Clementei

Centaurea-Clementei-2-CCroninweb Centaurea-Clementei-CCroninweb

(© Catherine Cronin)

Weekly Sketch – Cardoon Seedheads – 16/04/2016


Cardoon seedheads are wonderful to draw, globe shaped with tough outer spines and fluffy filaments.








(© Catherine Cronin)

Weekly Sketch – Daffodils – 07/02/2016

It’s that time of year, daffodil time! I can’t resist these cheerful flowers, bright promises of spring bobbing their heads in the grey days of winter. Here are a couple of sketches interested in ‘line’ and limited to four colours. I like setting limits on how I draw as it forces you to try something new, to think creatively, and not ‘do what you usually do’. For sketch 2 I didn’t take my pen off the page when drawing the daffodil blooms, they are drawn in one continuous line.




My daffodils were bright yellow; in the above sketches I like the balance of the colours and line – adding yellow I think would have disrupted that balance. So I thought I’d play around in Photoshop and see if I could add yellow to the blooms and make it work. I did at first try adding yellow just to the blooms but it looked a bit rubbish, it flattened/contained the energy expressed by the line work. So I tried some gradient backgrounds which I think work great. I definitely want to take these images into print.




(© Catherine Cronin)

Flying Peace Dove

Here is my first effort at a ‘Peace Dove’; a 3D-ish hanging decoration. The wings are folded into a horizontal position as if in flight and the tail is fanned open. I used blue marker pen with watercolour paint to decorate. I love the shape, but I think I can improve on the decoration, and I’d just like change the angle it is flying at slightly.




(© Catherine Cronin)