I first saw Puffins many years ago back in the UK when I was still a child and apart from the sketches and small watercolor I did, I haven't painted one since! Well, deciding to do something different for a change, I started on this new painting. The initial working drawing went through many stages as I struggled to get the pose and composition I was looking for. It had to be something that made sense to me artistically - I have included it here.
Eventually I arrived at a design that I could live with then that was transferred onto a rather heavily gessoed canvas panel. This panel had been sanded between coats so that the final surface was a lot smoother than usual but still had a bit of tooth. A blackish-brown acrylic wash was then laid on heavily behind the bird then lightened on the lower right. When dry, I began adding paint sparingly feeling my way in, almost as if I was painting a watercolor. Once some of details came together (such as the eye), I could step back and see how it looked so far. Okay for now but still quite a lot to do!