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meerkatlowrypk  Lowry Park Zoo

I created this painting from a photo my daughter took at Lowry Park Zoo. As I was creating it, I felt I knew this figure. Years ago I drew a portrait of ET for my son and realised there was a resemblance here. I looked up how ET was created and found that he was designed after a make believe friend that the young Spielberg had following his parents’ divorce. I guess it’s the raised head and the intelligent non aggressive look of this animal.


  1. He’s wonderful, Leslie! The colors are delicious!!!

    • Thank-you, Beth. It is interesting when something can look colorful even when not many different ones are used.

  2. Pleasant character. And I did not know that about Spielberg & ET.

    • Thanks, Tom. It was the only thing I could find out about ET’s looks. There was more about what went into his making.

  3. Another vibrant painting. I found them quite interesting after seeing a couple of serials from the Discovery program “Meerkat Manor”.

  4. I love this Leslie – crisp, balanced and glowing – the washes in the cheek pouches and throat are expertly done – Great stuff!

    • Thank-you, Stephen. The washes that you comment on were touch and go. Had to shadow the whole figure, let it dry and then go in with local color and let it dry. Then to punch the shadow areas, I had to make another wash of the blue to accentuate and not get it so wet as to lose the color underneath and lift and muddy it around.

  5. Another great one Les….i love when you do animals…

    • Thanks, Tracey. Animals and people are my favorite subject material. I find them quite challenging.

  6. Meerkats are extremely popular over here in the UK at present and it’s easy to see why looking at this delightful painting.

    • Thank-you, June. I got to thinking that the eyeballs peeking around the corner, that you created, reminded me of ET, also.

  7. Oh he is so adorable!!! oh wow. Am so glad I have time to visit. LOL. You do some very wonderful artwork.

    Hey, wanted to thank you for returning and posting more about the King story. It helps to get people thinking about such subjects. Part of the power of ‘art’–written, visual, auditory/musical etc. Maybe some others will follow your lead and post about things they’ve read or seen.
    Again, thanks–for the visit, the posts and YOUR ART here! grins and waves~~

    • Hi 47! Thanks for your comment! I included all of your statement in case some of our viewers would like to find out what we are conversing about. Anyone interested, it is 47’s post titled”impact”.

      • merci, mcerci, leslie! hope all is well at your end of the blogpond. grins.

  8. I so wish I could do what you do. Maybe I will have time to learn when I retire. Thanks for all the inspiration!

    BTW -Only an artist of your caliber would notice how warm the dark was in my fireworks photo. Frankly, I was more worried about focus, clarity, and composition, rather than warmth.

    • Hi Kate! Thank-you for such a great compliment. As you know, I have stated how in awe I am of your talent with a camera. I think other photographers would notice the warmth, also. I have tried to paint fireworks because there are several watercolorists who have rendered them beautifully. Not me, however. Many of them have cool skies behind them and I like your warm sky because it seems to give a depth instead of a flat look to the background. The sky is not flat!

  9. I like this one very much. I can feel it’s gesture and the warmth of the colors. I wish I could keep him as my pet 🙂

    • Hi Shiraz. Is that your name? Thank-you for the comment! I imagine you would have your hands full with this little guy as a pet!
      Hope you received my e-mail about your tag so that others could click on it. I noticed it wasn’t changed yet, so I did it on this one. You’ll need to do that so others can get to your site.

  10. He’s very cute! I like the way you’ve created the variations and stripes in his fur.

    • Thank-you, Sarah. In order to make the stripes, I switched to a 1/4″ flat brush and used the tip of it like the edge of a razor and worked it up and down as I drew it across the page. This created the furry look.

  11. Done that! (I think :-))- Thanks!

    • Hey, Shiraz! It works! Check out InkSplodge tag, above. She was the one who let me know about the tag thing.

2 Trackbacks/Pingbacks

  1. By Male Peacock « Leslie White on 26 Sep 2009 at 10:26 am

    […] one, art friends. After I was halfway into it, I wished I had rendered him like I’d done the meerkat ( without an environment ). It was very difficult to get the blue I’d chosen to come forward […]

  2. By Yellow Tabby Cat « Leslie White on 25 Feb 2010 at 10:48 am

    […] acquerello”. It is 140 lb. rough paper. I have tried the 140 lb coldpressed here , here and here. Once again, I am impressed with it’s brightness and how the color is magnified.  I like […]

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