Watercolor Journal - Cute

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Every minute I've spent with this little guy to capture his personality, aka cuteness, has been really fun.  I've been wondering what makes a baby owl SO cute?  I think it has to do with his big head and 'starey' eyes.  And fluff.  Lots of baby animals have similar "cuteness" and elicit a spontaneous awwww!"  But why do we humans love looking at baby animals so much?   Guess what?  The day after I finished this painting, I read that recently a study at Hiroshima University, found that looking at pictures of baby animals, increase productivity, focus and fine motor skills in adult employees One reason may be that watching babies of any kind encourage the caring/nurturing part of us, that requires  attentiveness to the needs of the little one.  If you wonder how researchers would come up with this type of a study, Japan is 'crazy' for "Kawaii" (Japanese for 'cute').  Remember Hello KittyPokemonAnime

Hello Kitty

Hello Kitty

Christmas morning 1977.  Sarah and Sniffy. 

Christmas morning 1977.  Sarah and Sniffy. 

So, I decided to display the little "owlet" painting near Gary for the time-being.  I'm hoping his focus, and concentration, can be enhanced by this small, feathered tutor.  In any case, this baby owl, will certainly exude cuteness, and that has to benefit Gary's sense of well-being.  It does mine, every time I walk by.  When Sarah was two years old Gary bought her a little bunny.  She named it "Sniffy" because...wait for it... it sniffed.  As you can see by the photo, it gave her a sense of well-being too. 

Watercolor Journal - Lil' Bandit

Furry, cute, and oh so sneaky!  A favorite lil' critter of mine is the raccoon.  I know they can be mean and you don't want to get cornered in a small space with them, but the little mask, striped tail, and the fact that they 'wash' their food makes them irresistible to my imagination. 

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Everyone has a good raccoon story.  My favorite took place at our old house.  With the Koi pond, and it's shallow rock waterfall, raccoons and possums were around from time to time..  A  place to wash food, an occasional fish food pellet, ornamental grass which hosted grubs, and worms, to say nothing of the tempting fish.  Gary had built the patio over hanging the pond a little, so that the fish could hide from predators and most of the fish were too big for a raccoon to pull out, but all the other goodies in our garden were in abundant supply.  Anyway, we knew they were there, our dogs kept us informed of that in the night.  Being nocturnal, I always wondered where they went in the daytime.  Our tree trimmer found out one day, when pruning a palm tree.  Up on a very tall ladder, and deep into the thickest part of the palm fronds, he came face to face with a big raccoon.  It was right next to our pond, and had made a nest there.  Both of them were surprised, and Mike took a quick exit.  When he went back up, Mr. Raccoon was gone.

Evidence

Evidence

When we take Gary for a walk every morning, guess what we see?  Evidence!  We've got raccoons here too, and I love knowing that.  I saw muddy prints in our little garden right outside our living room window, so I know they are close by.  We criss-cross their paths as we walk through our little neighborhood.  I wonder where they go in the daytime?  What tree, or bush do they live in?  Are they curious about us too?  Seeing these little prints day after day, reminded me of our little ecosystem by the pond, and inspired me to paint Lil' Bandit.  Love the daily "brush" with critters, and capturing them with MY brush!

Makes me feel like we're back in Sunland!

Makes me feel like we're back in Sunland!

Do YOU have a good raccoon story of your own to share?