Portrait of urban camels from start to finish (part 1)

I'm a bit partial to camels - docile and affectionate, or grumpy and aggressive. Camels drool, they have great udders, teeth, and hooves. Goats have the same stuff going on, and gorillas look so wrong they're right. I find many harmless insects repulsive, but that's all in my head, and they don't care anyway. The world needs to see drool and tentacles along with the eyelashes and beautiful wings.

The drawing in question was prompted by a friend commissioning "one of your great big camels", and the excitement of finding a giant roll of beige drawing paper (must get out more).

A digression on drawing from photos: When we draw from life, each eye receives a different image from a slightly different angle. Our brain analyses the two, and uses them to deduce depth of field. Drawing the scene, we resolve the two images to a single flat image on the paper. The way an individual combines the two images onto one contributes to their drawing style. The camera, having only one "eye" negates this step of resolving two images into one. This is why pictures drawn from photos can appear to lack depth, and why it can seem easier to draw from a photo than from life. Sometimes though it is not practical to draw from life, and the camera is an extremely useful tool.

So, back to the camels.  

I set off for the desert with my friends Tracey and Ant to find some camels. We found a group by the roadside, chatted in sign language to the herder, stroked the camels, took lots of photos, tipped him, and went.

(to be continued...)