Jackdaw Art - Behind the Scenes

Colourful jackdaw art print - ‘Forever Jackdaws’ by Lotti Brown.

Beautiful bird art all about forever love!

Forever Jackdaws art by Lotti Brown

Forever Jackdaws art by Lotti Brown

I wanted to create a beautiful jackdaws artwork as I feel like jackdaws are one of my special birds.

They are one of the birds I grew up with as our family garden, when I was a child, backed onto an abandoned old-school building with broken roof slates. The building was home to a whole community of jackdaws and the garden was always filled with the rich cawing and ‘chack’-ing sounds of their calls.

They are smart-looking birds with their dark bodies and shiny silver heads… and oh, that sapphire-blue eye that meets your own as if it can see right into your soul.

Did you know that jackdaws mate for life? That’s why I’ve called this cheeky jackdaw couple ‘Forever Jackdaws’…

It’s said that sighting a jackdaw at the time of a wedding or relationship commitment is a positive omen for a lifetime of love!

Detail from ‘Forever Jackdaws’ artwork by Lotti Brown

Detail from ‘Forever Jackdaws’ artwork by Lotti Brown

We’ve been lucky enough to have jackdaws nesting near our home for the last few years (…not so lucky the year that they actually nested in our chimney and we couldn’t light the fire!). I enjoy seeing and hearing them busy about their day and our dog loves to sit in the drive and watch them, too.

Jackdaws are very clever and enjoy ‘talking’ to and befriending humans and seem to be able to correctly interpret human intention by understanding the human’s direction of gaze.

One of my favourite Celtic jackdaw tales is about the jackdaws of Munster. It is said that a family of jackdaws sought refuge from the bullying of rooks and ravens in the town of Kilgarvan in Ireland. The king, at first, refused the jackdaws request…

But the jackdaws found an enchanted ring that protected the province of Munster from attack by the mythical Fomorians. In gratitude, the king permitted the jackdaws safe citizenship.

I love this tale and I wanted to embrace a Celtic feel in this artwork so I included intertwining ivy and wild rose as the border.

  • Ivy is evergreen and symbolises the everlasting nature of a lifelong love. Ivy is a resilient plant and is able to withstand hard times, just like a strong, long-lasting relationship.

  • Rose expresses the beauty of nature and the tenderness of love.

Behind the Scenes

Here’s how I created my jackdaws art digitally from my pen and marker drawings…

Please click on the images below to get more details…

The completed jackdaws art created digitally from my drawings…

Richly-coloured, Celtic-inspired jackdaw art ‘Forever Jackdaws’

Richly-coloured, Celtic-inspired jackdaw art ‘Forever Jackdaws’

I love the bold jackdaws and the way there seems to be the interplay of a conversation between the pair…

And I love the very intricate layered design, like a rich embroidery of nature surrounding the birds, encircled by the pretty border of ivy and wild rose… all sweetness, love, nature… and jackdaws!

You can buy my jackdaw art print in my online art store - in framed, unframed or canvas versions - with fast international delivery.

It’s also available here as a cushion, duvet cover, top, scarf, bag, notebook, and more…

See more of my art in my wildlife and nature art gallery…

All intellectual property rights in my designs and products (and in the images, text and design of this website) are and will remain the property of Charlotte Brown. Any infringement of these rights will be pursued seriously.

Buy or Make Your Sketchbook

Once you’ve decided it’s a great idea to keep a sketchbook, the next thing to decide is what your own sketchbook is going to be like…

You can make a sketchbook at home to use for your drawings

You can make a sketchbook at home to use for your drawings

In this week’s lesson, we’ll look at a few options for buying your sketchbook, how to use loose sheets as a sketchbook and some instructions for easy sketchbook makes…

If you’d like to save some money and have something unique, you can make your very own sketchbook at home!

It’s not even that difficult!

Click here to get inspired and decide whether to buy or make your sketchbook…

This is part of my online drawing resource to get you feeling creatively inspired to make art - you can catch up with all the free lessons so far here…

Sign up to my email newsletter below to get monthly updates with new drawing lessons and resources, plus my own art news and products…

Keeping a Sketchbook

In today’s free drawing lesson, we’re looking at keeping a sketchbook - why would you keep a sketchbook? How could you use it? How is it useful? What might you put in it?

Let’s take a look, here…

Keeping a sketchbook ideas

Keeping a sketchbook ideas

This is part of my free online drawing resource to help you feel inspired to get drawing and get creative. If you’d like to catch up with the lessons so far, click here to start drawing your way…

Sign up to my email newsletter below to stay updated with when new drawing lessons and resources are posted to the site, plus news of my own artworks and products…

Make Your Art Meaningful

For me, drawing and making art is only fulfilling when it’s personal and has meaning…

Personal art takes its meaning from what’s important to you, personally… and it gives meaning to your life by allowing you a chance to process and explore those topics, ideas, feelings and sensations that have a special resonance just for you…

Wildlife and nature holds a special resonance for me in my own art…

Wildlife and nature holds a special resonance for me in my own art…

When you understand what your own personal artistic journey is all about, it helps you to create the work that’s most fulfilling and enjoyable to you, as you understand what you want to explore and where you want to focus your attentions…

So today, we’re looking at starting points for making your own art more meaningful and more fulfilling to you… click here to start understanding your own artistic journey…

This is part of my free ‘Start Drawing’ resource to help you make skillful, personal, and meaningful drawings… you can catch up on all the lessons so far, here…

Stay updated with new drawing resources plus news about my own art - sign up to my free email newsletter below… usually comes out around once a month…

Gray Langur Monkey Art - Behind the Scenes

Portrait of a Gray Langur monkey - contemporary wildlife art by Lotti Brown

Gray Langur art by Lotti Brown

Gray Langur art by Lotti Brown

This piece of wildlife art was inspired by a beautiful photo of a Gray Langur monkey. It’s such a wonderful and compelling animal portrait that I immediately wanted to make an artwork from it and was able to license the original photo to do so.

This is a Gray Langur monkey, also known as a Hanuman Langur, Indian Langur, or Sacred Langur. It’s an Old World monkey that’s widespread across the Indian subcontinent including: India, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, Kashmir, Nepal, and the Himalayas.

These monkeys live in all kinds of habitats, from woodlands and forests, rainforests, deserts, mountains, cities, and even in temples. They eat all kinds of foods including leaves, pine needles, pine cones, mosses, ferns, lichens, and bamboo foliage, so I was pretty much able to team my little Langur monkey up with the background of my choice…

Showing detail from the Gray Langur artwork

Showing detail from the Gray Langur artwork

I chose to give him a background of bamboo as I have some in the garden that I can draw from life and I thought I could make very simple line drawings of the bamboo.

I wanted to make this a very simple artwork, with the focus on the Gray Langur monkey in the way of a portrait so that his facial expression was important… what is he thinking?

So I decided to keep the tones and colours very soft and neutral, to complement the beautiful grays in the monkey’s fur, and also to reflect the soft, contemplative gaze of this little animal.

Here’s how I created my Gray Langur portrait from my pen and marker drawings, scanned in and given the digital treatment in Adobe Illustrator…

Behind the Scenes

Please click on the images to see them larger and get further description of the artistic process…

Soft colours and an expressive portrait with personality - Gray Langur artwork

Soft colours and an expressive portrait with personality - Gray Langur artwork

So here is my completed Gray Langur artwork. The soft colours and simple background put the focus on the monkey and pull attention to his expressive face to make this a portrait full of thoughtful contemplation. He seems almost human, don’t you think?

You can buy an art print of my Gray Langur artwork in my online print store with worldwide delivery…

He’s also available printed onto a wide selection of homewares and accessories including bags, phone/tech cases, duvet covers, cushions, clocks and more here…

You can see more of my non-UK wildlife art here…

All intellectual property rights in my designs and products (and in the images, text and design of this website) are and will remain the property of Charlotte Brown. Any infringement of these rights will be pursued seriously.

Play at Art with a Fun No-Drawing Drawing Exercise

Make better art by making it ‘wrong’, feeling playful, and having fun…

Today I’m looking at using creativity and play to get better at drawing - and share with you my no-drawing drawing exercise… click here to see what it’s all about…

Sometimes we improve our drawing skills just by being willing to make mistakes, be curious and have fun…

Sometimes we improve our drawing skills just by being willing to make mistakes, be curious and have fun…

This is part of my free ‘Start Drawing’ resource to help you make skillful, personal, and meaningful drawings… you can catch up on all the lessons so far, here…

Stay updated with new drawing resources plus news about my own art - sign up to my free email newsletter below… usually comes out around once a month…

Making Expressive Drawings

I’m back to work after an extended Easter break and a lovely trip to Somerset…

I’m feeling inspired by all the emerging green of Spring… and today I’m looking at making expressive drawings…

Feeling inspired and fulfilled by your drawings and making drawings filled with emotion, expression, and personality - drawings that reflect you…

How to do this in your own drawings? Check out the article here…

How to draw in a way that is an expression of you and the way you see the world and feel about it.

How to draw in a way that is an expression of you and the way you see the world and feel about it.

You can catch up with more drawing lessons from my free resource here…

Stay updated with new drawing resources plus news about my own art - sign up to my free email newsletter below… usually comes out around once a month…

Coal Tit Art - Behind the Scenes

Sweet coal tit artwork ‘Coal Tit and Teasels’ by Lotti Brown

‘Coal Tit and Teasels’ art by Lotti Brown

We have had a pair of tiny coal tits in our garden for the past year and I love to see them appear on the tree branches, sweep down quickly to feed, and then dart quickly away again.

Although not as colourful as the blue tit, they’re beautiful little birds, very sweet to see, and I’m very excited to have done them a little artwork so that they can join in the teasely fun!

I love the action pose - in flight! It gives a really dynamic look to the artwork.

The colours, too, are some of my favourite - very natural but rich, warm, and really beautiful with the blends of yellows, blues, greens, greys and purples with earthy browns and beiges.

Detail from the coal tit artwork

Detail from the coal tit artwork

I created the artwork with a combination of pen and marker drawings on paper, ink-painting on fabric, and then all put together digitally in Adobe Illustrator to create the final artwork.

Click the images below to find out more about the art-making process…

And here’s the completed coal tit artwork:

Colourful coal tit artwork created digitally from drawings and painted fabric.

Colourful coal tit artwork created digitally from drawings and painted fabric.

I love the action pose of this beautiful little bird and the gorgeous soft colours and textures in the artwork. It’s a perfect matching pair for the Blue Tit and Teasels artwork or you could make a trio with the harvest mouse piece, too.

You can buy my ‘Coal Tit and Teasels’ art work as a print on paper or canvas in my art store (framed and unframed options are available).

It’s also available as a scarf, duvet cover, cushion, phone case, bag, mug, fashion top, and more in my Redbubble store here…

See more birds in my Nature & Wildlife art gallery, here…

All intellectual property rights in my designs and products (and in the images, text and design of this website) are and will remain the property of Charlotte Brown. Any infringement of these rights will be pursued seriously.

Collecting Inspiration from Nature

I’ve just published another drawing lesson in my free ‘Start Drawing’ resource here on my website

This week, we’re all about collecting personal and meaningful inspiration from nature to inspire your drawings… Read more about that here…

Collecting inspiration from nature for your drawings

Collecting inspiration from nature for your drawings

Self-Expression in Drawings and Art

How do you put you into your drawings? What makes a drawing art?

Do other people’s opinions matter?

We’re looking at all this and more in our next drawing lesson, published today on my website. You can find it here…

Colourful drawings are a means of self-expression

Colourful drawings are a means of self-expression

Waxwing Art - A Behind-the Scenes Look

Colourful and beautiful waxwing art by Lotti Brown - ‘Waxwing Winter Feast’ stunning bird art as fine art prints and printed products…

‘Waxwing Winter Feast’ - colourful and contemporary waxwing art by Lotti Brown

‘Waxwing Winter Feast’ - colourful and contemporary waxwing art by Lotti Brown

I think the waxwing is one of the most unusual and colourful birds that we have as a visitor to Britain… and one that I’ve very rarely seen…

In some years they are very abundant winter visitors to the east of the country, feasting on berries but they seldom seem to appear close to me… but I still live in hope that one day I’ll suddenly happen across a tree or bush festooned in colourful waxwings!

Showing detail from the waxwing artwork

Showing detail from the waxwing artwork

My artwork was inspired by a beautiful winter photo by Dee Carpenter (used under license) of a waxwing enjoying a rowan berry feast, that I’ve used as the basis for my artwork…

Here’s how I created my waxwing artwork from my pen and marker drawings, with a little digital help from Adobe Illustrator.

Please click on the images below to get the full picture and description…

The completed waxwing artwork - colourful and atmospheric

The completed waxwing artwork - colourful and atmospheric

I love the warm winter colours of the artwork - and all credit to a fantastic photo source - and what an amazing colourful little bird.

You can buy my waxwing art in my online store (framed and unframed giclee art prints and canvases) here…

My waxwing design is also available printed onto cushions, mugs, clothing, duvet covers, journals, phonecases and more here…

See more from my nature and wildlife gallery here…

Gray Langur Drawing - Hot Off the Drawing Board

Hot off this week’s drawing board is something a bit different for me: this absolutely beautiful Gray Langur (also known as Hanuman Langur, Indian Langur, or Sacred Langur)…

Here, I’ve added the first layers of colour to my drawing, with Promarker pens. Next up, I’ll be adding detail with coloured fineliner pens to add a bit more definition to the drawing.

I’m loving finding out about this Old World Monkey, thinking about where it lives and what it might eat while I decide what foliage to give him as a background for when I create my final artwork from my drawing…

Gray langur drawing with Promarkers - work in progress

See some of my completed wildlife and nature artworks here…

Pop back here to see what happens with this piece, or sign up to my email newsletter, below, for regular updates on works in progress, completed artworks, drawing lessons, and more…

Pink Flamingos Artwork - Take a Look Behind the Scenes

Colourful and bold, pink flamingos art by Lotti Brown…

Pink Flamingos art - colourful and contemporary flamingo art by Lotti Brown

Pink Flamingos art - colourful and contemporary flamingo art by Lotti Brown

I was really excited to create an artwork from these elegant and colourful flamingos. I love the curves and the vibrant pinks. I wanted to create a simple and contemporary artwork so that the focus is on the bold composition, and the dramatic colours and textures of the feathers.

Amazing birds!

Below, I take a look behind the scenes at the creation of the artwork, taking my drawings and scanning them into the computer and creating digitally with Adobe Illustrator to make my final artwork.

Click the images below to see what happened…

The completed flamingos artwork - colourful, bold, and dramatic.

The completed flamingos artwork - colourful, bold, and dramatic.

I really love the simple and dramatic composition of the artwork and the bold, vibrant colours of the pink feathers.

The simple composition really allows us to absorb the colours and textures in the artwork, too - bright, beautiful, and full of joy!

Detail from the flamingos artwork

Detail from the flamingos artwork

Pink Flamingo Shopper Bag by Lotti Brown at Contrado

Pink Flamingo Shopper Bag by Lotti Brown at Contrado

Love my pink flamingo bag? You can get it here… (along with other printed products in my Contrado store)

All intellectual property rights in my designs and products (and in the images, text and design of this website) are and will remain the property of Charlotte Brown. Any infringement of these rights will be pursued seriously.

Drawing Techniques - Mark-Making

I’ve a new lesson published today in my Start Drawing series. This week, we’re looking at how we draw and make our marks - things to think about and how to make effective marks!

Find out more here…

Are you ready to make your mark? Drawing help with Lotti Brown.

Are you ready to make your mark? Drawing help with Lotti Brown.

Catch up with the Start Drawing series here and also see the next few planned topics I’ll be covering in the future…

Want to stay updated with new drawing lessons plus all the news and new artworks from Lotti Brown Designs? Sign up to my free email newsletter below (usually comes out about once a month)…

Drawing Light and Shade

The next lesson in my ‘Start Drawing’ series has just been published. In this lesson, we’re looking at how looking at light and shade when we draw can help us to make more realistic and solid-looking drawings…

Find out how, here…

One of the ideas for adding light and shade to your drawings

One of the ideas for adding light and shade to your drawings

Arctic Terns Art - Go Behind the Scenes of the Artwork

Colourful and contemporary arctic terns art - beautiful British birds art

Arctic terns artwork by Lotti Brown

Arctic terns artwork by Lotti Brown

I created this beautiful arctic terns art from a dramatic action photo by photographer Julie Hunt, (under license). It’s such a dynamic and elegant composition that as soon as I saw it I just really wanted to capture it in art.

Arctic terns aren’t very local to me, although I have enjoyed seeing them on visits to Northumbria where they nest on the Farne Islands. I feel quite a connection with arctic terns since I’ve loved them since I was a little girl learning about birds…

Aged 8 or 9, I rather excitedly borrowed a book from the school library that I thought was entitled ‘The Arctic Tern’ and I was so looking forward to finding out more about the adventures of this bird from the far-flung Arctic… and was disappointed to discover that I’d actually borrowed a book of school-days tales (The Attic Term)…

If it had been the book I was hoping for, I might have learned that the arctic tern actually migrates between the Arctic and the Antarctic and back each year… it’s the bird species with the longest migration in the world and is believed to be very long-lived with a recorded example of a ringed bird living to almost 30 years of age.

It experiences two summers each year (choosing the light summer months for its stay at each end of the earth) so gets more daylight than any other species too. How’s that for an amazing life!

Detail from my Arctic Terns artwork

Detail from my Arctic Terns artwork

A pretty awesome little bird and, as you can see, so elegant in flight. Its common name is the sea swallow and you can understand why with those beautiful swooping wings and curved tail!

The completed arctic terns artwork - colourful, contemporary and dramatic!

The completed arctic terns artwork - colourful, contemporary and dramatic!

I love the brilliant coastal colours and wonderfully elegant curving shapes of my arctic terns artwork…

You can buy art prints, framed prints and canvases of this artwork in my online store with fast worldwide delivery here…

More arctic tern printed products including cushions, clothing, duvet covers, bags, mugs, phone/tech cases, journals and more are available here (also with fast worldwide delivery).

More of my nature and wildlife art here…