Malayan Flying Fox– Pteropus vampyrus
This fruit bat is the largest flying fox in the world. It has a wingspan of 4 to 5.5 feet. I first saw them in Animal Kingdom in Disney World. They are amazing bats. This particular bat was the species that was used in one of my favorite children's books, Stella Luna. If you haven't seen the book, you really should check it out. The illustrations are whimsical yet accurate. At the time I didn't realize it, but Disney got their Malayan bats from the Lubee Bat Conservancy right here in my home town of Gainesville, Fl. This painting the third bat painting I have done as part of the 52/52 Painting Challenge. I have one more painting left on the drawing board and almost ready to paint. When I am done I am hoping to use them to help promote Lubee and Bat Conservation.
The technique I used is the graphite tonal drawing with the gouache painted on top. I find it the easiest and fastest method for painting fur. These bats are soft and have a lot of hair on their bodies. Their wings are more leathery and pliable.
If you want to find out more about Flying Foxes, Animal Planet has a fascinating article of their blog. Check it out here.