The first is done as a memory with a chat that I had in October with a principal of a JO-JOO circus that visited our town - mr. Jaromir Joo. I made some sketches of Siberian tigers over there (see my old post here)
It is in my watercolour/gouache sketchbook and is about 7x8 inches done in gouache. Picture is done from photograph that I'd taken before he allowed me to have a peek through the open window of the cage with his 600 pound Siberian tiger (To make my self a picture without bars of that cage). After that we had a chat about tigers and life in general. He is a clever fellow that has contributed to the rescue of Siberian tigers with 25 cubs bred within his circus.
Second sketch is about 8 inches tall and it is from a photo of a miner from internet. In this case I worked with oils. It is hard to work from life if you're confined within your room in order to beat a flu out of yourself. Those sketches are means of staying "in shape" and not to forget your craft. With any given craft it's like a memory training or going to the gym - after while your skill can fade a bit if you don't use it often.
This is not to say that I have acquired any sufficient skill for painting and drawing I just wanted to remain the skill that I have so far :-) Please notice that I'm aware that there is a long way to master my craft. I want to point out that I think it's important to maintain your skill (stay in shape) in some degree even if you feel like doing nothing.
So stay in shape guys in whatever is your vocation.