Ride A Painted Pony

This is my favorite flavor of paint...

This is my favorite flavor of paint…

prompt logoSome of you will be looking forward to an extended weekend beginning today.  I will be looking forward to dragging my nine day decaying carcass back to Mecca tonight and working through it.  While we can’t agree on the happiness value of a Friday, we can all come together and celebrate another exciting reader-suggested idea in The Nest’s Prompt the Squirrel series.  This is where I always remind you that if you haven’t suggested an idea yet, you need to do so now so that you can get in on the fun, but that’s getting to be a broken record that isn’t netting me much in the way of new prompts… so dowhatchalike.  Just remember, you don’t have the right to complain about my Prompt the Squirrel series if you don’t participate!

See what happens when you just sit idly by?

See what happens when you just sit idly by?

This week’s prompt idea comes from our favorite nun in the WordPress blogging community, Faith, Hope, and Chocolate.  While she’s not a frequent poster on her blog, she is an avid reader of others’ words of wisdom, including The Nest… which apparently does not cause devices to spontaneously combust into brimstone fires when it is viewed within the holy walls of a convent.  Anyway, here is what she suggested:

How about sharing more of your non-computer-created artwork?  I challenge you to get the acrylic paints out again!

Not only a suggestion, but a challenge!  Would I be up for it?

Can't I just watch more talented people do it?

Can’t I just watch more talented people do it?

I’d mentioned before that there was a brief period of time where I dabbled in seeing if my computer art skillz would translate onto a canvas medium.  It occurred during the mid-months off 2010, and resulted in a whopping three paintings of dubious results.  Faith mentioned in the comments section of that post that she admired the few works I had done and that I should take it up again… so perhaps I should have seen this coming.

This is an example of my finest work.  I guess it beats some of the starving artist sale stuff...

This is an example of my finest work. I guess it beats some of the starving artist sale stuff…

One of the things I love about digital art is that it is sooooo easy to erase no longer visible underlayers and fix mistakes.  Painting is not necessarily as forgiving… especially if you are using cheap paints and have no idea what you’re doing.  Since I don’t envision ever taking painting up as even a semi-regular hobby, I can’t justify the extra time and monetary effort it would take to get better at it.  I mean, it really can’t be this easy, can it?

I can't afford phthalo blue so I won't be having happy little trees magically appear out of a paintbrush.

The power of phthalo blue.

Like anyone else who knew cool shit when they saw it, I watched a lot of Bob Ross’ “The Joy of Painting” shows when I was younger.  There were obviously magical properties in that afro of his that allowed recognizable objects to instantly appear out of his random brushstrokes.  I couldn’t understand for the life of me how he did it… or how anyone does it.  My paintings always look like a preschooler’s work that Mommy would hang on the icebox to scare off the roaches.

OMG!!!!  That's such a hideous portrait of the dog sniffing the cat's ass!

OMG!!!! That’s such a hideous portrait of the dog sniffing the cat’s ass!

But I have a challenge in front of me, and I’m gonna rise to it, dammit!!!

Please stand by... we are having technical difficulties due to dumbassery.

Please stand by… we are having technical difficulties due to dumbassery.

I took a handful of progress pictures while I was creating my painting so you could get a feel for my painting process and see how what I did loosely tied together to form the finished product.  Unfortunately, while I was cleaning out no longer needed photo files from my computer during my too-much-time off this past week, I wound up deleting the damn folder that had those pictures in it…. and didn’t realize my goof up until literally just now.  So much for an informative and interesting post to go with this prompt…


Which makes this pretty much like every other post on this blog now.

Luckily, I had already uploaded a few of the finished product pictures to Photobucket before I wiped the originals from existence.  So I’ll tell you that I decided to paint…. what else, Rainbow Donkey!  Here’s what he looked like on my kitchen painting table:


Here’s another shot I took with my old camera so you can see what the colors look like under a flash…


Now to see what my in-nest art critic Ody thinks of my work…

What... the.... heck?

What… the…. heck?

I can't look at this anymore.  Biskit!  Come and take this thing to the litter box.

I can’t look at this anymore. Biskit! Come and take this thing to the litter box.

Eh, who cares what the critics think anyway?  I’ll bet none of them even know how to paint.

So, to end this story, I could have hung Rainbow Donkey on my wall along with my other poor attempts at putting acrylics to canvas… but I thought it might be a nice surprise to let the person who inspired me to paint it in the first place have Rainbow Donkey to cherish forever.  So I mailed the painting across the Atlantic to Faith Hope and Chocolate… and here is a photo she took of him enjoying his new surroundings!

It looks like RD is in good company!

It looks like RD is in good company!

Thank you Faith for submitting this challenge that actually made me get off my butt and do something… and I hope you and the Sisters get much happiness from my beloved donkicorn!

Just like the Doobies, we’ll have another prompt another Friday…. next week!


About evilsquirrel13

Bored former 30-something who has nothing better to do with his life than draw cartoon squirrels.
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27 Responses to Ride A Painted Pony

  1. I love the look of your squirrel… it probably ponders about a way to rule the world :o) I watched Bob Ross too, I thought I can learn it within two minutes and then I become famous and stinking rich… sadly the result was pitiful…and I hurt my fingers badly as I tried to destroy my “artwork”

    • I think Bob Ross was some kind of con man hired by the paint industry to trick people into thinking painting was easy. But at least he loved squirrels…

      I wouldn’t waste the physical strength to destroy my bad artwork. Lighting a match is so much easier!

  2. Ally Bean says:

    Wow! A nun challenged you. Impressive.

    I like your attempts at acrylics. You done good. But no Bob Ross inspired happy little tree? Perhaps with a squirrel in it? That would be something to behold!

    • If I tried to paint a tree, I doubt it would look happy. It would probably look like it had Dutch Elm Disease and be pleading for the tree surgeon Dr. Kevorkian…

  3. draliman says:

    I bet that afro guy is so jealous of your RD painting. All he managed was a lake and some poxy mountains, it doesn’t even have any unicorns in it. Rubbish.
    I finally sent you an idea!

    • You know… I never did see Bob Ross paint a unicorn before. I’ll bet he couldn’t do it!

      I just saw your prompt… I think I already know what angle I’m going to use on it….

  4. fanrosa says:

    I know this might be a stupid question, but there are no stupid questions….. Did you already empty your recycle bin? Because I’m good at deleting things and then they just sit forever in the recycling bin. Or are you one of those tidy types that immediately empties after each delete?

    I must say with my critic’s eye that RD is pretty good, I think you’re improving a lot maybe from your using Photoshop more and understanding the other concepts that go along with composition? I’d like to think within my genre that I paint rather well and I can draw mandalas like nobody’s business but I still can’t paint horses and draw squirrels so cheers to you!

    And Bob was okay, but you should definitely check out Bill Alexander! He was this German dude who made mighty mountains and trees with nothing but a palette knife, a barn brush and a thick booming accent (it’s been a while, but I think he actually called it a barn brush!). My dad and I loved him! I think his show was the Magic of Painting and Bob Ross was actually his student. If not, he was a kopykat for sure!

    • Yes, I’d already dumped the recycle bin as well… I’ve pulled a few things out of there before after I’d banished them from my files, but realized right away that when I purged the other day, I made sure it was a permanent purge…

      I’ve never heard of Bill before, and I’m shocked to see that Bob wasn’t an original! I’ll see if I can find him on YouTube…

  5. Whenever you ask for suggestions, I sit wherever I am, drool sliding gently from the corner of my flaccid lips. Today, being away from home and with friends, or sort of (they are watching Dr. Who and I am here, at the computer, but we are in the same house and that counts) I thought, “Zowie, how about 100 ways to show ill-grace under adversity?” What with the whole stiff upper lip thing and why does stiffening an upper lip in any way prove that you are stalwart in the face of the disaster that is life? So I pondered whacking adversity over the head with a 2X4 excerpt I don’t have one handy. Just saying.

    • Well, I’ve still got your original prompt, and it will be a doozy once I finally decide to run with it. When my upper lip gets stiff, I begin to worry that I may be having some sort of serious medical problem…

  6. Trisha says:

    Your squirrel looks like a squirrel and your donkeycorn looks like a donkeycorn, which is pretty impressive to me. My one attempt at acrylic painting was truly pitiful. I’ve always been convinced Bob Ross had to be a fraud or some kind of magician. Paint is just not that easy to dispense onto canvas!

    • The squirrel was by far the best of my original three paintings… and I spent more time with it than I did with any other painting, including RD. And of course, I couldn’t get any of them done in just a half hour like ol’ Bob could…

  7. JackieP says:

    I remember watching Bill Alexander and Bob Ross when I was first learning how to paint. I do believe Bill did indeed call it a ‘barn brush’. They do make it look easy don’t they? I’ve been painting with acrylics close to *mumble* years now. A lot of your success is the brushes you use. That is lesson number one. lol the next one, is practice! A whole lot of practice! I thought your paintings turned out quite well. We could tell it was a squirrel and Rainbow Donkey, hell, that’s half the battle. lol

    • Yep, it’s really not all that different from how I learned to draw on the computer so well… I just got plenty of practice because I never had to leave the computer to learn! If I could just paint at my computer… but I can’t imagine how sticky the keyboard would be with paint dripped all over it!

  8. gentlestitches says:

    Wow! You know some interesting peeps ES! Sister is very lucky to have that painting. XX

  9. You did a really good job on both of those paintings. Thanks for sharing them. 🙂

  10. I’m not sharing Rainbow Donkey with the other sisters. They’d only steal him away from me. Or not understand what the hell I’m on about. So he’ll stay in my room where he’s reasonably safe! Although Hildegnome and Tigger may gang up on him if he’s not careful.

  11. reocochran says:

    I like your rainbow pony (I support love and rainbows 🙂 I am a fan of the sweet, gentle Bob Ross. His voice was so soothing and I did learn some if my painting techniques.

  12. reocochran says:

    Hi, ES, I forgot to say I love your painting of the gray squirrel xo

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