Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Woodcock studies - May 2010

I was amazed to find this woodcock, on the ground in broad daylight (about 6:20 pm) at the edge of a small marsh where I'd been watching the lapwing chicks feeding. The 'marsh' itself was really only a large boggy field covered by marsh marigold around the centre, with rushes and sedges towrads the northern edge. Having wbeen watching snipe displaying over the area and feeding, it was fantastic to be able to see this close relative, and be able to really study the distinctive differences. The woodcock such a steep forehead, larger eye (appearing at times to tbe very close to the top of the head), a bulbous, almost distorted lookign face (head on) and cleaner, richer lines.

I was also able to watch it feeding, a distinctive bobbing/walking technique, though because of its low down body posture, I kept loosing sight of it amongst the marsh plants and grasses. The colour sketch directly below is not very accurate, but I wanted to get some quick colour notes onto the page to support a couple of reference video I managed to digiscope. I'm really pleased with a couple of the simple sketches on the lower page, where I felt I've manage to successfully capture the jizz of the bird's head/face.


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