The most annoying color in my various containers of coloring pencils is the one inevitably titled “Dove Grey.”
My problem with this color is that Mourning Doves, of which we have quite that gather daily on our deck for the great grub come in many colors. Grey isn’t one of them. If you look at them closely, they are beige, sometimes greyish beige which also can look closer to pink than beige. You will see some bright blue, green, amber and ochre. A touch of black here and there. It’s almost as if they named that color because it is the only color you do not find on a real, live Mourning Dove.
Maybe they had a different dove in mind?
The other interesting thing about doves is that each feather is outlined. You can see each exterior feather. Finally, no two doves are exactly the same. The colors vary from bird to bird. Even their legs are different colors. Some have dark red legs, others have black legs. Some have both colors.
I took three tries at getting a dove to look like a dove. I’m not happy with any of them. The “outlining” on the feathers doesn’t look natural. Maybe paint would work better. Usually by the third time I’m trying a particular drawing, it comes together, but in this case, there was something I liked in each picture, but none of the them looked right to my eyes.
I liked the shape of the dove. I even liked his legs. But the detailed feathering seems too obvious and unnatural. So, I tried again.
It’s amazing how much you can do right and still end up with a picture that you don’t like. Not one to give up easily, I tried again.
I thought maybe I could just skip the complicated individual feathering, but that doesn’t look right either, I also don’t like the colors even though they are more or less accurate. The dove as a whole? Nope.
I’m going to try it again. Just once. If that doesn’t come out looking like a dove, I’m giving up on doves. I’ve heard people say “never give up” but realistically, there is a time to give up especially when you are obsessing over one drawing and there are a million other things you could be doing. Obsession is not the same as determination and it is good to recognize the difference.
If you never give up on one drawing, all the other drawings you could have made will get lost. There absolutely is a time to give up and I have reached it.
One more try!