Through the Diorama Glass: We Go West

The 63 ft long canoe that hangs in the Grand Gallery of the AMNH is a sight to behold. Every time I pass by it I get an inevitable urge to climb in and launch an expedition.

And so did these buffalos. As migratory animals they traveled great distances (sometimes up to 400 miles) and roamed the plains of the West in search of warmer climates. They lived in proximity to many Native American tribes whose survival largely depended on them. So naturally these buffs would be curious about these peoples' cultural artifacts. (A lot of them made, ironically and literally, at the cost of their hides.)


I'd sketched these guys at a number of after hours Animal Drawing sessions. I used my sketches from the past and referenced photos I took to create this scene. Drawing buffalo fur was one of the most fun color exercises. It's amazing how many different hues can go into simulating "one" color. (In this case 40+!)