How to draw a Bewick’s Wren Step-by-Step

In this tutorial on how to draw a wren, pay particular attention to how the feathers, especially on the wing, are suggested, instead of carefully delineated. On many birds, you do not see each feather clearly articulated. Suggest the masses of the feather groups with a hint of feather texture. This illustration was based on a photograph by Ashok Khosla and was drawn with a ball point pen, watercolor, and a bit of white gouache.

Click on the first illustration to start a step-by-step slide show.

2 thoughts on “How to draw a Bewick’s Wren Step-by-Step

  1. Cole says:

    Hi, it’s me again.

    First I just want to say that this was a great step by step, It was fun using a pen for a change when drawing this bird. You really have to commit to your lines when using a pen, but the results are pretty cool.

    My question though, is on a different subject. Do you have a different approach to drawing owls?They seem so different from other birds, because they appear to have a lot more roundness, so it is harder to see the sharp angles. I’m also struggling to find details like the eye ring, ear patch, and malar. That is, if raptors have these details anyway?.?…



    • Thanks so much Cole, I agree one one the nice things about pen is that because you can’t change the lines you just have to go all in instead of fussing. I would use the same approach on owls. Because they have soft edges to the flight feathers (little micro hooks called fimbriae), the edges of those feathers are even more difficult to see. No hard feather edges, instead bulges of the feather groups. On the head, the ear patch (auriculars) is part of the facial disk, a parabolic structure around the ears that helps channel sound down to the sensitive ears. The disk also includes some non auricular feathers. Inside the body of the owl, the body is fairly small, there is just a thick pile of feathers covering the body that both insulate the birds on cold nights and helps to muffle sound as the bird flies through the air. You are correct about the rounding of the body- that is all if the fluff.
      On hawks and eagles, you can still find a clear ear patch and malar. Take a look at photos of Red Tails. There is a dark malar bar and you can observe the change in direction of the feathers of the ear patch. There is no eye ring because there is bare skin around the eye.

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