This was for a project in Illustration II with the assignment being to make a surreal feeling illustration.  I was in the mood to paint some pufferfish, so I thought the best way of painting aquatic animals was to make them appear they are floating in air verses floating in water.

First I drew a detailed sketch in which I made notes on during critique and then projected it onto larger paper.  I used cold press water color paper, 20″x16.”puffer.jpeg

After the drawing is transferred over to the project paper, a wash is applied over the entire thing and let dry to stretch the paper properly.  After that, a wash is applied only to the background to create the first layer of the sky and clouds.step1.jpg

The first layer of the fish is added on after the sky dries out.  The pufferfish in the foreground is closer to the end product where it was inked with two different colored inks and done with a quill tip nib.  The clouds need a few more layers to add definition and the water in the top left corner still needs to be refined and needs a different color to offset it from the sky background color.step3.jpg

After that, it’s a matter of adding more layers of watercolor and some line quality with the ink work. The clouds, I believe, need more refining.  But that’s for another day with less frustration.step3.jpg