Posted in Digital Art

Those Pesky Squirrels!

The bane of my life are the huge amounts of squirrels living in our trees out the back, and of course all over the area.  While they are cute and at the same time pretty stupid (they never seem to find the nuts they bury!), they are constantly at war with each other – usually over territory – they are also a pain in the you know what, because they eat loads of fresh shoots and flower buds, not to mention any veggies growing.  This year one decided to eat a fresh shoot from one of our rose bushes – and then tried one of the flowers I had just planted – luckily it didn’t like the taste, so that one at least is safe!

The crazy thing is that last year one of our neighbours decided to trap them.  Now if that’s not an exercise in futility I don’t know what is.  The rules are that you must release them within a kilometre of where they were trapped.  I can’t imagine the stress these little creatures go through sitting in a trap all day waiting for the insane one to come home and relocate it.  Still, it didn’t (and never will) work, as they are back in the same numbers again this year.  While it IS annoying when they demolish your plants, I’d rather have them than not.

Here at “Ranch Rowland” we have loads of little visitors – rabbits, chipmunks, toads, milk snakes, voles, bird life and so on.  What’s not to love? 

So, wanting to keep trying out different brushes with my painting software, I picked one of the photos I took last year and ‘had a go’.  Another fun piece really – so I didn’t worry too much about it being ‘perfect’, although I think I went a bit mad with the ‘pinch tool’ in places.  (I find this useful to tidy up edges that are a bit wobbly, but it never really looks right afterwards, so I might stop doing it).

Brushes used were:  several oils (bristles mostly), tiny spatter airbrush, slow velocity airbrush, pepper spray airbrush, a couple of palette knives, and as usual – loads of layers and various ‘kinds’ of layers.  (Screen, overlay, multiply, colourise etc).  It’s great fun testing them all out to see what the results will be.  The one brush I used extensively actually was called “Impressionist” – it simply ‘paints’ lots of varying strokes in the style of well, the Impressionists!  I used loads of layers of it on the tail, and to make the ‘fur’ look on the body.  A handy brush indeed!

Maybe I’ll do the Chipmunk next!  (Yes, I have several photos of that too).

Here’s the result then – Mr (or Mrs) Squirrel enjoying the sun beneath one of our trees.

The resident Squirrel - one of dozens!
The resident Squirrel – one of dozens!


Self taught artist back living in New Zealand after more than a decade of living in Canada. Starting over in more ways than one but always up for the challenge!

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