Development of the Dicaelus purpuratus drawing

In 2006, for George Ball’s 80th birthday, I presented him with a drawing of Dicaelus purpuratus. This was the species that captivated his attention and eventually led to his doing a PhD on the carabid beetle tribe Licinini, of which Dicaelus is a member.

Here’s the final drawing:

Dicaelus purpuratus

Here’s where I did the drawing

I’ve written a post about the drawing method I use, which has varied slightly over the years. For the Dicaelus, I began by enlarging a photograph of the beetle, and printing it on paper.

I then used a soft graphite pencil, and rubbed the back of the paper. That turned it into carbon paper that I could use to transfer some aspects of the photograph onto the Arches Hotpress watercolor paper I use.

I did the transfer by drawing over the photograph using a sharpened 6H pencil. Here’s what was transferred. Note that I have also put a mask over much of the paper.

I then refined the pencil sketch.

The inking started, as well as the colored pencil.

17 May 2006

More ink outline, and more colored pencil:

21 May 2006 1 pm
21 May 2006 5pm
21 May 2006 6 pm

Eventually, once the colored pencil layer was refined, I started adding inks on top of it:

27 May 2006
27 May 2006
28 May 2006
29 May 2006 12 pm
29 May 2006 5pm
30 May 2006 1pm
31 May 2006 8am. Masking removed.
31 May 2006. Completed

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