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August 2020 Art Update: Part 2

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Apparently August was a good month for drawing, because here we are with another art update for the month! πŸ˜€ It’s been really nice drawing so much more. I’m hoping this trend will continue when I return to work.Β  I wish I’d done the above drawing in a proper sketchbook, but when inspiration strikes while you’re on hold with your insurance company, you draw on whatever you have within arm’s reach. πŸ˜›

Part of my drawing spree this month can definitely be attributed to Shark Week. I took part in the #DrawingSharkWeek art challenge on Instagram created by MarcctheSharkk. It was a lot of fun, and the daily prompts pushed me into drawing some different sharks that I may never have done without that dose of inspiration. I did 5 out of the 7 days and I’m really happy with that. πŸ™‚

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I know the last shark image is a sad one, but it’s an important issue that is really messing up our ocean’s ecosystem.Β  If you aren’t already familiar with shark finning, it’s when fishermen catch live sharks, cut their fins off to be sold for shark fin soup or bogus miracle cures and then they discard the rest of the usually still-living shark back into the water. Without their fins, these poor sharks will either slowly suffocate or be completely vulnerable to other predators. Either way, its a horrible death that awaits an astronomical amount of sharks each and every year.

Aaaand back to fluffier content, the next 2 are just 2 ladies I drew in warmer color schemes than I usually do these days. It was kind of fun branching out from the cooler color schemes that have mostly been my comfort zone for a while now. ❀

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How have you guys been keeping busy (and sane) this month? I’ll be doing an August Wrap-Up post soon with more info on what I’ve been up to the past few weeks. Take care, guys, and have a great week! ❀

 

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Weird and Wild Animal Drawings

I recently asked for weird animal suggestions, and man, did you guys ever deliver! πŸ˜€ I’ve been posting these curious critters over on my Instagram the past couple days, but now that they’re all finished, I wanted to share them here on the blog. Special thanks to all the bloggers listed below for helping fuel my creativity with these bizarre animal suggestions! ❀

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I did screenshots of these guys off my Instagram account so it cut part of the top and bottom from the picture off, but it was quite fun drawing these anteaters, suggested by none other than Precinct1313! Aside from picking interesting animals with the funnest and bushiest of tails to draw, the Precinct is always a go-to for all of your up to date DC Comics news! πŸ˜‰

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Here is my cotton-candy colored Nawhal, as suggested byΒ SP’s Projects Blog. Thanks, Pete! πŸ™‚ You can see another Narwhal in the Instagram post I did for this one. I was having some issues getting the images over onto my laptop to do this blog post, but this cheerful little Narwhal was quite fun to draw and very fun to color! You can check out Pete’s own creative works on his blog!

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I haven’t really done a solid black and white piece in a while, so this was a lot of fun. Big thanks to Dawn of the Lead for suggesting the Platypus. πŸ˜€ You can check out their painting and miniature creating skills over on their blog! I gotta say, this little guy was a joy to draw.

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You have no idea how happy I was to see one of my favorite sharks pop in your guys’ suggestions, so big thanks to Imperial Rebel Ork for suggesting it! He even got a bonus critter in his drawing with a little eye parasite. πŸ˜‰ Check out IRO’s blog for his painting and kitbashing skills, as well as some awesome post-apocalyptic fiction he writes!

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Haha I don’t think I ever would have thought of drawing a Naked Mole Rat on my own, so massive thanks to Lashaan from Bookidote for coming up with this one! πŸ˜› It’s the perfect blend of ugly and cute, I think. Check out Lashaan’s Corner on Bookidote for some awesome book and comic reviews!

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Oh my goodness, did I have fun drawing this blob fish. I asked for strange animal suggestions, and My Bookish Dream was not messing around when she suggested this deep sea beauty. πŸ˜› I don’t know why I had an overwhelming need to draw a little tongue sticking out of its mouth, but the need to give this fishy a “blep” face was just too much to resist, actual fish anatomy be damned, I say! Check out My Bookish Dream for a bounty of bookish delights! ❀

BIG THANKS to each and every one of you for supplying the inspiration behind these oddballs of the animal kingdom. πŸ™‚ I really enjoyed working on them. What current (or recent) creative projects have you guys all been working on?

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Bon Voyage, Shark Week 2019!

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Shark napkins and the most Jawsome salsa dish in all the land! πŸ™‚

Well, Shark Week has come and gone yet again, but what a great reign it had. ❀ My favorite new fact I learned this year was that basking sharks (the 2nd largest shark in the world) can actually breach the water! It blew my mind.

The week had the perfect sendoff with my amazing chum (you bet your sweet ass that’s a pun. A bloody good one, too!) πŸ˜‰ πŸ˜› I’m sorry, I’ll stop! Anyway, my amazing chums Cupcakes & Machetes and Mr. C&M came to town for a proper showstopper to bring the week to a close. We had delicious Caribbean food and took on the mighty Rum Raid!

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We did a few more things out on the town and then returned home for Shark Week and cake! C&M rocked her Jawsome shark week socks and I rocked my new shark jammies that featured a bunch of great whites with water floaties on their pectoral fins. πŸ˜›

Now that Shark Week is over, my focus can snap back to drawing and writing. I’ve got a lot to work on and am looking forward to digging back into things on the creative front. πŸ™‚

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Shark Week Drawings: 2019

❀ Ahoy! Happy Shark Week! ❀

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Fan art for the game Hungry Shark World by yours truly.

This has truly been a Jawsome Shark Week so far, but it has also been a VERY busy one! I was beginning to fear that I would run out of time to do some Shark Week art this year, but I managed to squeeze in the time for at least 2! (Which is one more than last year! Haha) πŸ˜›

I recently learned about the game Hungry Shark World (and totally want to play it) which resulted in the fan art you see above. All the sharks in the game have attitude and some are really outlandish and cool looking. It even has zombie sharks and prehistoric sharks you can play as, along with a few other non-shark species. I guess the premise of just eat all the things is pretty simple, but it looks fun to me, so, why not? πŸ˜€

The other drawing I did is definitely more in the “doodle” category, but I did it more for fun anyway. πŸ˜› Every single time I see a photo of a basking shark gliding through the water with its mouth gaping open as it feeds, all I can imagine is it saying “Hey, you guys!” in the voice of Sloth from The Goonies. Don’t ask why my brain works the way it does, because even I couldn’t tell you sometimes. Haha

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If you don’t know about basking sharks, here’s a quick little Basking Shark 101 for ya:

Basking Sharks are the second largest shark in the entire world, dwarfed only by the whale shark.

Luckily, like the whale shark, basking sharks are one of three gentle giants of the sea, using filter-feeding as their method of consumption. That means, despite the intimidating size and wide, gaping mouths, they’re really just cruising around for plankton and other itty bitty prey.

They are surprisingly capable of breaching the surface and launching themselves out of the water, which, when you consider their size, is pretty cool and terrifying all at once if you just so happen to be in a boat beside one. πŸ˜› The reason they do this isn’t really known since they aren’t doing it for hunting purposes like great whites do. Some theories are that it could be a move to impress the ladies during mating season, or that it is in an effort to rid themselves of parasites and lamprey eels that hitch along on them for a ride. No one knows for certain, though. Apparently one is reported to have unintentionally capsize a boat off the coast of Scotland while breaching, resulting in the drowning of 3 people. 😦

Anyway, hope you guys enjoyed the Shark Week drawings this year! πŸ™‚ I wish I’d had the time to do more, but even though it’s still technically shark week, I am going to be too busy having fun and hanging out with Mr. and Mrs. Cupcakes and Machetes this weekend as we enjoy shark week, our body weight in rum, and celebrating Mr. C&M’s birthday! Have a great weekend, everyone!! ❀ ❀ ❀

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Blue Ocean Floats: Shark Week Recipe

Today was cooking day at work so of course we had to make some shark themed deliciousness to enjoy. I was so happy with how these cute drinks we made turned out. Much like your classic Root Beer Float or Boston Cooler, this Blue Ocean Float involves soda pop and vanilla ice cream. The blue soda was a berry flavored soda we found at one of our local grocery stores, but any blue soda will work, so feel free to get creative if you try this at home! And who needs a cherry on top when you can put a candy shark on top instead?? πŸ˜› My participants loved these! ❀

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We also ended up making some “shark week crunch” which is essentially muddy buddies but made with Bugles instead of Chex so that each piece resembles a shark tooth when coated with the powdered sugar mixture. πŸ™‚ Anyway, this week has been utterly exhausting so I think I’m going to leave off there for the night, curl up with the kitty and go relax and watch some Shark Week. ❀

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SPECIAL SHARK WEEK SPOTLIGHT: Sharktopia

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I love art and I love wildlife conservation. Combine the two and you have such an utterly amazing win-win situation on your hands. πŸ™‚ I recently discovered the site sharktopia.org through theirΒ Instagram account and I am absolutely over the moon about it! ❀

Sharktopia is run by the friendly and talented Caiti Rose, a self-described “coffee-loving, shark-obsessed, happy vegan artist with the goal of altering the misconceptions surrounding sharks and other Ocean life”.

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She uses her creative and amazing art to help spread awareness about a variety of topics regarding sharks and other ocean life. Her work ranges from absolutely adorable and lighthearted to impactful and eyeopening, and all of it is for the benefit and love of sharks.

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The line work and coloring and cuteness, I just absolutely adore it. ❀

I’ve already purchased and received my own shark goodies and can honestly say that they were absolutely worth the money. πŸ™‚ I love what I ordered. ❀ I also printed some of the free coloring pages available on the site for my participants at work to color and learn more about different types of sharks as they do so. The coloring pages are awesome and so informative!

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Be sure to check out the Sharktopia website and enjoy some great artwork featuring our favorite finned friends and Caiti Rose’s great mission to raise awareness about their struggle. There’s the free downloadable coloring pages I mentioned, a great shop, and more to be discovered there, so dive on in! πŸ™‚

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SHARK WEEK!

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It’s that magical time of year again, guys! ❀ SHARK WEEK! ❀

It’s no secret around here that I friggin’ LOVE sharks. I love marine life in general, but sharks always take the cake for me. Needless to say, this week it’s all about sharks on my blog. πŸ™‚ Even at work, I’ve planned my weekly activities with our finned friends in mind. I’ll have my group doing shark arts and crafts, doing cool mini-lessons about them, and making shark-themed snacks and desserts for cooking! I can’t wait! A few of my awesome participants love sharks as much as I do so I can’t wait to see what they think of the activities I have planned. πŸ˜€

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Sorry in advance to the parents who will have to hear about sharks ALL.WEEK.LONG. from the participants on my team. Haha #sorrynotsorry

Do you tune into Shark Week each year? What are you looking forward to seeing? I personally would be thrilled to see more love for the sharks that aren’t great whites. Great whites are awesome too, but there are SO MANY amazing and fascinating types of sharks out there that they could cover. Gimme those whale sharks, your Greenland sharks, threshers, goblin sharks, gimme ALL the sharks! I get that great whites are what the average person thinks of when they picture sharks, but all the more reason to mix it up a little. πŸ˜‰

So, what can you expect to see around here this week? More shark doodles from yours truly, updates about what shark projects we’re doing at my work this week, a special spotlight post on a great artist with a mission, and more! I hope you guys enjoy the posts and have a JAWSOME Shark Week! ❀

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The Return to the Sketchbook

After some neglect, I finally brushed off my sketchbook and have been showing it a little love again. I figured I’d share some of my recent illustration-sketch thingies with you guys. πŸ™‚ Here are my 3 latest pieces, all done with watercolor markers and sharpies. Some of you may have already seen them over on Instagram but I figured I’d share them here anyway. ❀

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Not my usual color palette, but hey, it’s fun to tinker around with different colors from time to time. Yellow was a bold jump out of my comfort zone.

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This one was kind of inspired by the dead twins in The Shining, but I was listening to The Birthday Massacre, hence the bunny mask. This one was just a quickie since I felt I needed to push myself that day to practice more. I wish I’d taken my time with it more, but hey, that’s what re-draws are for, right? πŸ˜‰

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Just did this one tonight. Was wanting to do a creepy spin on those cute poses couples do for photos so I thought it’d be fun to have a girl covering the guy’s eyes with bloody claw hands while he’s obliviously unaware he’s about to be dinner.

Hopefully there will be more of these art posts. Shark Week is coming up so I’d love to do some Shark illustrations soon, like last year’s whale shark drawing I did. Definitely need to buy some new watercolor markers soon. My poor little babies are drying up!! D:

Anywayyy, hope you guys enjoyed the drawings. What creative stuff have you been up to lately? πŸ™‚ I’d love to chat about it!

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Goblin Shark Facts

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One of my favorite things about sharks is simply how many different kinds there are, and how vastly unique one species can be from another. One of the first sharks to come to mind when I think about “weird sharks” would have to be none other than the goblin shark. I’ve enjoyed learning what little snippets I could about these elusive buggers for some time now, so I was looking forward to having this excuse to research them some more. So, that said, let’s get into the fun and talk about these interesting sharks!

Despite their ghoulish name (and appearance), Goblin sharks are of the “pretty in pink” variety, ranging in color schemes from a lighter greyish pink to a strikingly vibrant dark pink as they get older. Their unique color is due to their skin being ghostly translucent due to lack of pigment, so the pink you’re seeing is actually from the shark’s blood vessels showing just beneath the skin.

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If you think the goblin shark looks frightful at a glance, you should see it in action when its hungry! Utilizing a feeding method known as “slingshot feeding”, the goblin shark launches its whole friggin’ mouth forward to snatch up prey in what I can only compare to the chestburster scene in the movie Alien.

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Similarly to great white sharks, goblin sharks do not do well in captivity, and the few times they have been kept in aquariums they have died shortly after arrival. 😦 This, combined with the rarity of sightings of living specimens, makes them pretty mysterious to scientists.

Despite being rarely seen by humans, goblin sharks are found in oceanic waters all around the world, but most sightings and captures have occurred off the coasts of Japan, making it little surprise that the very first specimen was discovered there in 1898. (Imagine being the first person to find such an unusual-looking shark!)

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Greenland Shark Facts Because “SHARK WEEK!”

Greenland shark (Somniosus microcephalus)

Greenland sharks are seriously interesting sharks, so I was really looking forward to doing the Info portion of this post. πŸ™‚ I had also intended to include an illustration like I did for my recent Whale Shark Post, but 1.) Greenland sharks are kind of wonky to try to draw/color (at least for me) and 2.) My access to scanners is much more limited at the moment than I had anticipated. So thank you google images! Phew! Excuses aside, onto the info:

Greenland sharks are part of the family of sharks known as Somniosidae, more commonly known as “sleeper sharks”. As the name would imply, this group of sharks are the more mellow of the bunch, swimming at lower speeds and just being pretty “chill” in general. The Greenland shark specifically is known to be the world’s slowest shark, not even reaching 1 mile per hour.

Other names for the Greenland shark include: the “gurry shark”, “grey shark”, and “eqalussuaq“.

These guys get old. Like, realllly old. Being the longest-living of all vertebrate species, these big guys are estimated to be capable of living for anywhere between 200 to even 500 years!

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Many people tend to only think of sharks living in warmer waters, but Greenland sharks prefer the cold. In fact, they can be found thriving in Arctic and sub-Arctic waters year round, making the waters around Greenland, Iceland, and Canada their home.

Comparable in size with the Great White, these predators have never been recorded to attack humans. They sustain themselves by hunting and scavenging, and have been found with some interesting things in their stomachs when caught. (One particular Greenland shark on record was even found with the body of an entire reindeer in its stomach!) Due to their slow speed, scientists were surprised that these guys were able to prey on living seals which can travel so much faster . . . until they discovered that Greenland sharks were nomming on the speedy little guys while they were sleeping under water.

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Due to the depths these guys like to hang out in, their tissue is loaded with a potent neurotoxin (trimethylamine oxide) making their meat toxic. Despite this, they are still hunted for food, and through a lengthy and longstanding process involving fermentation and curing of the meat, they are not only eaten, but even considered a delicacy in Iceland.

There are loads of other awesome things to learn about these sharks whether it comes to them themselves or the mythology that surrounds them. Seriously, if you’re looking for an interesting shark to research, look no further than the Greenland shark. They may not be much to look at to most, but they truly are fascinating. πŸ™‚

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