Featured Fine Art Scratchboard Gallery

This is a small selection of my complete body of work, showcasing different species, sizes, textures, and techniques. Featured here are some of my all-time favorite wildlife scratchboards and several fan favorite pieces too!
Kingfisher
Wolf pup
Great Grey Owl
Red Foxes
Snow Leopard
Arctic Wolf
Titus, The Sentinel
Ann, The Harmonius
Tiger
Gray Squirrel
Raccoon
Ring-tailed Lemur
African Lion
Jellyfish
River Otter
Lynx
Herd of African Elephants
Gorilla
Gray Wolf
Green Iguana
Lynx
Bumblebee
African Lioness
Barbary Macaque
African Lion
Snow Leopard
Jaguar
Patricia, The Free
Giraffe
Robert, The Wise
Black Panther
Peregrine Falcon
Our Wild Brother
Grizzly Bear
Pandemonium of Parakeets
Northern Spotted Owl
Flamingo
Chickadee
Eagle Owl
Bald Eagle
Badger

Purchasing Artwork:

Scratchboard artwork available for purchase can be viewed in my web store. (Not all pieces featured here are available for purchase)

Commissioning Wildlife Scratchboards:

Send a request here - please include the desired animal and approximate board size (5x7, 6x6, 8x10, etc)

More information about commissioning artwork here.

Why I love Scratchboard

My work is exclusively black + white. The amount of contrast that is possible with scratchboard is incredible and produces very unique images that are difficult to attain in other mediums. Scratchboard is an old, but resurging medium that many people, many artists, still are not familiar with.  I really enjoy introducing people to this medium and encouraging others to try it.  Different challenges come with each new piece - bring it on!

History of Scratchboard

Scratchart is an old artform and was once used to illustrate magazines and newspapers, but was substituted with newer technologies.  Scratchboard art is now experiencing a resurgence as a fine art medium.

The International Society of Scratchboard Artists (ISSA) provides a brief history here.

More About Scratchboard

In this blog post, I write about why I've switched my focus to scratchboard and made it my primary medium.

 

In this blog post, I provide a step-by-step break down of how scratchboard pieces are created from START to FINISH

For more about the tools used to create my scratchboard artwork, take a look at this blog post.

My Favorite Subject

I have always been more than fascinated by the creatures of Africa.  They represent life as it was before us and signify what life is becoming because of us.  Despite their many hardships, they survive.  They are majestic and free.  They are the royalty of the animal kingdom.  

 

I focus on wildlife because of their beauty and want to help protect them.  They deserve our respect and deserve to have their stories told.

Scratchboard FAQs

What IS Scratchboard?
Scratchboard is a subtractive medium. A masonite board is coated in compressed white clay and black india ink.  I use a variety of abrasive tools to scratch away the top black layer of ink to reveal the white layer beneath.  Scratches are placed in layers to obtain the desired values of gray and white and to create different textures.
How do you get the GRAY values?
The gray in each piece is an illusion of the scratches. Each individual scratch is white. The gray is created by how thick each scratch is and how close together they are. There is no gradient from black to white on the board. 
How LONG does a scratchboard piece take?
The time to complete each piece is dependent on how large it is, the composition, and what textures are involved. A 5"x7" piece typically takes 6-10 hours. An 8"x10" piece typically takes 18-30 hours. Anything larger than an 11"x14" is very dependent on textures...a 10"x20" elephant takes about 3x the time a 10"x20" big cat takes.
How do you FIX a mistake?
My process is pretty slow, so large unmanageable mistakes are very rare. I can use ink washes and ink pens to darken areas and 'mask' a mistake, but there is no way to cover it as if it wasn't there.
What TOOLS do you use?
I have two tools I use for each and every piece - a small fiberglass brush and x-acto knife. I have other wire brush tools, sand paper, and knives for specific textures.
Are the scratchboards PROTECTED and can they still be scratched?
Archival varnish is sprayed on every piece to help protect it from dirt, dust, moisture, UV damage, and minor scratches. The artwork is perfectly safe being displayed in your home and is more durable than most assume. However, pieces should be protected during transport because the varnish can be scratched through if gouged with a sharp object. 

MH

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Snow Leopard

5x7 scratchboard