A tale of two tigers
Cartoonist and digital painter, Patrick LaMontagne, is known for his paintings of charming, whimsical animals. The detail and brushwork in his digital painting style has often been mistaken for traditional media, and people have commented that the magic of his work is in the subject’s eyes. A true artist, Patrick strives to push forward with his art and always gives something new and different. He’d already painted two tigers before with the traditional black and orange coloring, but wanted to try something different, never realizing that this would present an ethical dilemma.
In the video above, Patrick paints on a Wacom Cintiq 16, using a reference photo of Sheera, a beautiful, orange-and-black Amur tiger who resides at Discovery Wildlife Park in Alberta, Canada. Patrick decided to try to paint her with white fur and blue eyes, adapting the actual reference material to suit his whimsical style. The painting turned out beautiful and Patrick was proud of his creation, and pleased with the Cintiq and the resulting process video.
“I’m pleased with how this turned out, and better still, I recorded the painting from start to finish at different stages. This was painted entirely on the Wacom Cintiq 16 display. I did some colour and light adjustments on my Cintiq 24HD at the end because I know how it needs to look on that display for accurate printing. I was a little apprehensive making the commitment to painting it entirely on the new smaller display but it was a joy to work with. I would recommend the Wacom Cintiq 16 without hesitation or reservation. It’s a beautiful piece of hardware.”
Everything was going great, until he learned that one of his biggest clients, the Calgary Zoo, would not be able to carry prints of this new, white tiger.
Instead of scrapping this wonderful painting, and starting from scratch, Patrick was able to salvage most of his efforts – thanks to the fact that his work was digital. Watch the video to see how he was able to turn the whole situation into a teaching moment about art, ethics, and wildlife conservation.
About Patrick LaMontagne
Patrick LaMontagne, and is a cartoonist and digital painter. After answering an ad in the Banff Crag and Canyon newspaper in 1997, Patrick suddenly found himself with a weekly editorial cartoon. In 2001, he accepted a position as the editorial cartoonist with The Rocky Mountain Outlook newspaper, the same year he became nationally syndicated. By 2005, he was a full-time cartoonist and illustrator, despite having never received any formal art training.
While he has drawn a lot of different things over the years, his whimsical animal paintings are what he enjoys painting most. Two of these digital paintings received Guru Awards at the 2010 Photoshop World Conference in Las Vegas, including the Best in Show. Another one earned the Best in Show in 2014.
He and his wife Shonna continue their pursuit of happily ever after in Canmore, Alberta, surrounded by the beauty of the Canadian Rockies.