Great Horned Owl by Tara Warburton-Schwaber

Great Horned Owl

I think owls are awesome birds. I love the way their eyes seem to see everything, and how far their heads can twist around.  For a Great Horned Owl, I really like their distinctive feather horns.  When I volunteered as a Zoo Ambassador at Woodland Park Zoo in Seattle, the owls were one of my frequent stops.  They are so calm and peaceful to watch.  The owls would be perched in their trees, silently watching the families stare up at them.  They seem so regal.  The owls, not the families and children.

My good friend Natasha sewed me a dress.  Its a beautiful dress, I’ll have to post a picture of it some time.  But what does that have to do with owls? She also has a brand new townhouse she bought herself and is happily decorating.  She showed me her color scheme of coral, orange and turquoise and I knew I just had to draw her something.  I not-so subtly asked her if she liked owls or foxes better, and I bet you can tell her answer.

This is an 11×14 inch drawn on Bristol Board.  I used Daniel Smith Watercolors and a mixture of Polychromos, Prismacolor and Luminance Colored Pencils.  First I sketched out half of the drawing.  Using super scientific methods, I folded the paper in half and used a light box to trace for symmetry.  Once I was happy with the sketch, I again traced the image onto the Bristol Board using Copic Multiliners SP.  Then the watercolor background and yellow frame, and I was ready to start with the colored pencils.    I have to say I really appreciate the hardness of the Polychromos pencils because it was really difficult getting the details I wanted for the eyes and feathers with the Prismacolors.

For obvious reasons, the Original is not available.  However, prints are!  You can find details in my Shop or through Fine Art America.

Great Horned Owl | Rainbow Menagerie by Tara Warburton-Schwaber
Great Horned Owl | Rainbow Menagerie by Tara Warburton-Schwaber




Yellow Banded Tree Frog - Capturing Starlight by Tara Warburton-Schwaber

Work in Progress for March 2017

My Behance and Deviant Art portfolios are up and running, and obviously, so is the website.  Next up is figure out Fine Art America, Facebook and Instagram.  While March is mostly dedicated to getting my website and portfolio loaded onto the web, there are quite a few other things I am working on right now.

First, I’m starting a new series of bird women.  The work in progress to the right is of the first in line featuring Rainbow Lorikeets.  It’s a 14in by 20in on Arches Hot Press Paper.  I used watercolors for the background and colored pencils for the hair.  So far, the background and the hair are looking pretty snazzy.  For the hair, I experimented with adding in blues and yellows to make the hair have some highlights.  I’m quite pleased.  I’ve just started on the skin, then the dirndl and finally, the birds.

Next up is an other entry into the Rainbow Menagerie.  Its a Spoon Billed Stork in Grass Green, Teal and Lime.  I’m trying a new paper because the Bristol paper really doesn’t like the watercolors and warps.  This new paper is watercolor paper that is really smooth.  I’m able to get more effects and it took a few layers of paint.  I recently acquired some Duochrome paints from the Daniel Smith line and I wanted to see what would happen when they were mixed with salts.  I like it.  I’m pretty sure it will show up in more works.

Lastly, I’m working in Adobe Illustrator to illustrate Poison Dart Frogs.  I’ve already created the base and I just completed a Yellow Banded frog today.  My goal is illustrate as many different types as I can and make a poster out of them.  I’m amazed at the sheer number of little frogs that are hopping around the Amazon.  This project will keep me very busy!

      Work in Progress - Tara Warburton-Schwaber    

Tara Warburton-Schwaber | Designer and Illustrator behind Capturing Starlight

Hello world!

Since this is my first post, I should introduce myself.  My name is Tara Warburton-Schwaber and I am an artist and a graphic designer.  I have worked in corporate America for the past 1.5 decades and its time to devote myself to my craft.  Over the last year I have spent a lot of time working on my art and increasing my skills.  I’m currently participating in the Bellevue College Graphic Design Professional Certificate program and will be finishing up in June 2017.

I live in North Bend, Washington a small town located in the Snoqualmie Valley.  I have a husband, a step-son and two brat cats.  I am a child of the 1980s and have been heavily influenced by Lisa Frank.  My favorite color is orange and my favorite treat is chocolate.

After taking a few years off to refocus my life, I’ve decided it’s time to get Capturing Starlight off the ground.  I have my etsy shop set up where I have been selling coloring pages and clip art.  I hope to be branching out into other mediums in the very new future.   I have been busily updating my portfolio on DeviantArt and started on on Behance.  Next up is finishing this website and checking out some other Social Media sights.