This week I've been working on a new piece, featuring a welcome return to British waters - that of the European Otter, which is at last coming back to our rivers and streams after a long absence. I have admired otters from an early age, but due to their scarcity always assumed that I would never see one in person. With their numbers on the increase, I now have a little hope that I might one day see one! And with all the doom and gloom in the papers lately, some good news (however small) is much needed indeed.
As always when making a new piece, I did a lot of preparatory drawing in my sketchbook, to gather some idea of how the animal behaves and moves. Though they look cute and cuddly on land, otters transform completely underwater; executing graceful, fluid manoeuvres.
|An otter wolfs down a tasty fish supper|
|Sketches from a video of two otters playing in long grass|
|Otters swimming gracefully|
|A comatose otter sleeps in his holt|