All art copyright (c) Mike Kloepfer
"The level of achievement that we have at anything is a reflection of how well we were able to focus on it."
-Steve Vai

Friday, September 14, 2007

Sanford Zoo 09/07

Sanford Zoo 09/28/07
Another visit to the Central Florida Zoological Park. This time we got up close and personal, a BIG thanks to the staff at the zoo.
Nothing can compare with the animal being right in front of you while you sketch. You have so much more to draw from, and can capture more of the essence of these magnificent creatures.

Ara is a Green-Winged Macaw:

A cool Iguana:

I loved the eyes on this Great Horned Owl:

A beautiful young female Bald Eagle:

This beautiful Amur Leopard had an awesome expression and penetrating eyes:


Today I went to the Sanford Zoo with some artist friends. It was awesome! I must go back.

Here are some of the sketches.

A Caracal:

I liked the light on this elephant behind a fence.

A couple of Bald Eagles. The dark one must have been young.

A few studies of the Coati. These guys are awesome.

Landscapes and Skies 09/07

After trying watercolor and discovering how much fun it is, in addition to being a great medium for skies, I decided to do regular 'sky studies.'
I was originally going to do "a sky a day" for the month, but... sometimes it rains.
I am aiming for 3-4 skies per week. I will post as many of them as I think are worth showing.



This evening's sky was superb. 09/14/07

Here is my first. 09/08/07

Thursday, September 6, 2007

Wildlife 09/07

Starky (my favorite dolphin at Sea World Orlando) critiques a sketch.
Photo by Loran Wlodarski


Study for "Out of the Deep - Brown Shark"
Charcoal on Fabriano Ingres paper, 6" x 10"
Reference: sketches from life of brown sharks.

Horse Study, Charcoal on Fabriano Ingres paper, 8"x10" 2 hrs.

I loved the way the light was playing across the form of this noble Andalusian.

This study used the 'lift-out' method: covering the surface with charcoal dust, adding the darks with vine charcoal, and lifting out the highlights with a kneaded eraser.

I learned a valuable lesson about fixative. Too many coats will take away the lights, almost as if a fine gray was sprayed over the whole image.

Still, I like the drawing. It’s times like these that I remember how much I love charcoal.

The light glints off a polar bear swimming in the frigid waters of the Arctic.
Derwent HB, 2B, 4B on Canson 50 lb sketch, 4"x8"

Back to my roots and an old favorite, graphite.

FIgures 09/07

Figure Study; Charcoal, 8"x10", 120 Min
This piece uses the 'lift-out' method, where I put down a layer of charcoal, laid in the darks with vine charcoal, then lifted the highlights out with a kneaded eraser.

I liked the way the planes of the torso alternately turned toward, then away from the light, and this was one of the main things I wanted to capture.

The point of this exercise was to refrain from putting in detail, and to get the image to ‘read’ correctly, with subtle shifts in value – as if seen from a distance or through squinted eyes. I got the idea when I was looking at a sketch after taking out my contact lenses.

Reference: Original Photo by surfrat13

Study Paintings 05/07-08/07

Here is a series of quick study paintings. The point of the exercise is to get the important aspects on the canvas in a short time.

Horse Study; Acrylic, 8"x10" 45 min

Deer Study; Acrylic 8"x10", 60 min

Pirate Still Life Study, Acrylic, 4"x5", 20 min.

Sea Scape Study, 6"x10", 30 min.

Kingdom Of Heaven Study, 8"x10", 60 min.
From the movie Kingdom of Heaven. I loved the costuming and scenery in this movie.

Still Life Cups Study; 4"x5", 15 min.

Tuesday, September 4, 2007

Caricatures '07



Classic Clint
Pastel and Conte on beige paper, 12"x16"

Megan ("M-Bot")
Pastel and Conte on beige paper, 12"x16"

Some NFL Linebacker
Pastel and Conte on beige paper, 12"x16"

Couldn't resist this pic of BIggy Big
Pastel & Conte on beige paper, 12"x16"

Dig that Rappa cap.
Pastel & Conte on beige paper, 12"x16"


Dino's Dad
Markette Marker with Prismacolor Art Stix on 20 lb Bond


My buddy Regis. Love da hat.
Markette Marker on 20 lb bond, 12"X16"

A guest at the park.
Markette Marker on 20 lb bond, 12"X16"

Wildlife 08/07

Sunshine is a beautiful Scarlet macaw, an excellent model too.
From live field sketches, painting in acrylic 9"x12" 07-08/07