Jun 12, 2012

Siberian Tiger Painting

Another mini tiger study I'm doing. I don't normally like to post works in progress but that's usually because, the way I paint, my WIPs don't look like anything until they're nearly complete. But in this case I think you can pretty much tell where the painting's going even though it's far from finished. It's quite obviously a tiger (Siberian) in the snow.

Stalking Siberian Tiger Study - WIP
5"x7" oil on Gessobord

This is from a photo I took when I went to a wildlife photography workshop with Paul Burwell at the Triple D Game Farm a few years ago. This is a really great experience if you ever get the chance to go. I took thousands of pictures of animals in natural settings, including tigers, wolves, lynx, bobcats, coyotes, foxes, cougars, black bears, otters, and raccoons. I have enough reference to keep me painting for a few years.

I'd like to go back again soon, though, for the winter photography workshop when they have subjects such as snow leopards and arctic fox in the snow! Wouldn't that be wonderful!? But, ugh, Montana in winter?? Yikes! I'm a wimp. I admit that sounds miserable! But it would be worth it.

But I digress. Back to the tiger painting. I love this particular shot because of the intensity and the pose. He's stalking. He's focused. He looks like he's spotted you, the viewer, and now you're his target. The curves of his body, the power of his muscles are exciting. The lighting is also dramatic. (Btw, at Triple D you gotta get up at 5:30AM for that morning lighting! Be prepared!)

When I first decided to paint this image I was toying with the idea of making him a white tiger in yellow grass, instead of a yellow tiger in white snow. What would you think of that?

Check back soon to see the finished painting!

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