Another drawing completed in my series! I must admit these are taking a fair amount of time to create, but I want to make sure I am doing a great job when honouring the provinces and their official symbols. I’m really happy with how this one turned out and my passion and motivation to continue and push myself with this series is growing. If this is the first post you are seeing on this series, you can read more about it on my previous post here. Now without further delay, let’s dive into the symbols represented and some process shots!
The title of the piece is a translation of the Latin Splendor sine occasu, which is the official motto of British Columbia.
Animal – Spirt Bear or Kermode Bear
This bear was adopted as the official provincial animal in 2006. Sometimes mistaken as an albino black bear, it actually gains its white fur colouring due to a genetic trait. The spirit bear is most densely found in the central and northern coast of the province.
Bird – Stellar’s Jay
Designated the official bird in 1987 through a provincial vote, the Stellar’s jay can be found throughout the province. If it looks familiar, that’s because it’s closely related to the blue jay.
Flower – Pacific Dogwood
This beautiful floral emblem of the province was designated in 1956. The Pacific Dogwood is a large tree that boasts many of these flowers in the spring, followed by clusters of berries in the fall. The tree is protected by law and cannot be cut down.
Tree – Western Red Cedar
The official tree title since 1988, the western red cedar holds significance not only in the province’s industrial industry but also within the cultural mythology and traditions of the west coast native tribes.
Fish – Pacific Salmon (Sockeye featured in illustration)
With the Pacific Ocean on the entire western side of the province, this fish easily makes British Columbia its native home. The fish has been part of the Species at Risk Act in Canada and conservation efforts are being made to help the species’ population stabilise.
I’ve included a strong water element within my drawing as well to reference the fact that this is a coastal province.
If nothing else, by the end of this project I will definitely know a lot more about my country and the wildlife and plants living in it. This drawing required a lot more photo reference research than my last one. Ideally, I try to use a singular reference for each animal I draw. In this case, due to lack of finding royalty free references in the positions I wanted, I had to source multiple references to shape the drawing the way I had envisioned.
One of my favourite things about this piece was the colour scheme. I used over 65 colours and in the variations that were available in colored pencil, PITT pen and watercolour pencil. I really loved these colours together and foresee some other projects in the future within this colour scheme. 😉
Now it’s time to take a short breath and start the next one! I hope you enjoyed seeing a little bit into my process on this piece. Next month’s illustration in the series is Manitoba. Follow me on Instagram or Facebook to see sneak peaks of the work in progress!
Prints available in my Society6 shop!