In the late 1990’s John Busby did a series of small ‘greyscale’ watercolours for The Herald newspaper in Scotland. Each was of a single species of bird and was used for the ‘Birdwatch’ column in the Saturday edition.
Some of the articles can still be found in The Herald archive [search for “Birdwatch” before 2000] and are beautifully written by Hugh Ouston.
The pictures are mostly drawings with soft grey or brown wash added, no doubt to look good in black and white newsprint. A couple of the drawings are in colour – a promotion to the colour supplement perhaps?
After publication the drawings were all dutifully returned to the artist (complete with a large sticker on the back and occasionally with scrawled titles in thick black pen!) Some were sold at the time but many still remain and are offered below.
The ‘pen and wash’ style was one John Busby often used for illustrations. Since he contributed illustrations to over 70 books in addition to writing his own, we have quite a number of these detailed, mostly single species drawings!