Scratchboard is a wonderful medium to use for animals. It gives beautiful detail to fur and feathers. Scratchboards are a more professinal version of the old crayon version many people did as children. I primarily use the Ampersand clayboard product. I start with a masonite board covered with a thin layer of clay and black ink. Scratch the black away using a variety of tools such as Xacto knife, scapel, erasers,etc... and then I add color with watercolor or inks.
I've been scratching for about 20 years. I enjoy doing all kinds of art work but scratching is my favorite. Why I like scatchboard is because of its uniqueness. You don't see too much of it around and it inspires experimentation. I've taken Introduction to Drawing classes at my local community college, Long Beach City College, and a number of workshops from our Parks and Recreation center and other workshops around the country. The majority of my learning with scratchboard specifically occurs with International Society of Scratchboard Artists (ISSA) which I am an active member. To join the ISSA visit the website.
My second favorite art form is photography. I enjoy going outdoors to take pictures of events and local wildlife. Since I live in Southern California most of the photos I take are with birds because they are more accessible. Plus I just like birds. I like to make scratchboards from my own photographs or my photo buddy's (my husband) pics so alot of my boards are with birds. Plus well again I just like birds.