The Painted Diaries – October (part 1)

The theme for October in The Painted Diaries is drawing! (Tying in with the #inktober drawing challenge.) I decided this is a wonderful opportunity for me to practice drawing something I find really challenging: ANIMALS!

Armed with these two books for inspiration and encouragement, I’m hoping this will be an inspiring month and one which will bring me closer to our friends in the animal kingdom.

Imagine a Forest by Dinara Mirtalipova has a great section on drawing animals, along with several other chapters on people, buildings, and the flora and fauna of the magical forest.

The Creature Garden by Harry and Zanna Goldhawk is specifically about drawing animals, including a whole section on mythical creatures.

These books are really fabulous guides for people such as myself who are looking for some solid basics. There is great step-by-step guidance, starting with simple shapes that build up to a finished drawing. There are also plenty of gorgeous details to delve into once the basics have been tackled. As I turn the pages of both books, I feel like I am wandering through a beautiful and magical realm. It is both an inspiring and relaxing experience.

(I totally fell in love with this horse.)

By this point I started to feel as though my animals were developing personalities. Don’t you think Owl looks a little worried?

Time to branch off into the mythical realm. I have always loved the Firebird from Russian folktales.

For Wolf, I departed from my two books and looked to photographs of wolves in the wild for inspiration.

I guess it was only a matter of time before the animals started talking to each other!

This year, I am discovering that drawing something brings me closer to it. This has certainly been the case with my nature project, the Micro-seasons Creative Journey. Here, at the halfway point of this month, I find myself getting much closer to these animal friends. I hope they will stick around in my art long after October is done.

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