A Little Bit of Humour

Can an ant feed five echidnas???!

I hope that my latest painting gives you a little chuckle.

Dinner for Five???

Echidnas have spines like a porcupine, a beak like a bird, a pouch like a kangaroo, and lays eggs like a reptile. They are a member of the monotremes, along with the platypus, an order of egg-laying mammals. They are a small, solitary mammal native to Tasmania and Australia. They are usually 30 to 40 cm long and weigh between 2 to 4.5 kilos.

I love the way they walk, they waddle (on the ground). They don’t climb trees or swing from gum nuts, but the beauty of having artistic licence is that you can create whimsical and humorous scenes like this. 

 Quality A-4 and A-3 sizes Limited Edition print runs of 100 of “Dinner for Five???”, numbered, titled and signed by me, the artist are available at: https://pjpaintings.com/collections/realistic-animals/products/dinner-for-five  and the original painting will soon be available at Tiger ina Papera Unique Woodcraft Gallery, 7/81 Salamanca Place, Hobart, when it exits from the framers. https://au.placedigger.com/tiger-ina-papera-unique-woodcraft731112233.html

I hope that “Dinner for Five?” gave you a little chuckle this morning.

Cheers, from Patricia (PJ) Hopwood-Wade



A new Tasmanian member is getting ready to join the hammock series!

Initial starting to come to life beginning
Feeling more secure now that the hammock isn’t invisible

Liking the surrounds of gum flowers and leaves
Please finish my tail, the side of me and the leaves below the hammock.

Yes, Platty-Platypus, I’ll try to finish it all as soon as I can!

I hope that everybody’s week is going well and that you’re finding time to relax and enjoy life too.

Cheers, from PJ Paintings

Dog attack

For Day #6 of the Inktober Challenge the prompt word is “husky”. I thought of drawing a Husky, but I haven’t had too much experience drawing dogs (I suppose that could be viewed as a missed opportunity to push myself to learn and develop my skills) but instead I decided to draw a “husky wombat”.

A husky looking wombat

This wombat almost didn’t survive a dog attack. My Charli-dog loves paper products and pulled this picture off my bedside table (how my glass of water and everything else didn’t get knocked over is amazing)! She had herself comfortably settled with the painting between her paws, happily munching away when I walked into the room catching her red-handed!

A husky wombat that almost didn’t survive a close encounter with a paper-eating Charli-dog!

Thanks for visiting from PJ Paintings


Story telling

Many of my paintings tell a story.  This one, which I finished this week, has ants, hiding, standing upright and pressing themselves against a rock, not daring to breathe, lest the slightest movement attracts unwanted attention from a hungry echidna. I think they’ll be safe thanks to their exemplary hiding skills. 🙂

Hiding Ants
Hiding Ants

Now here’s a true story about echidnas that you may or may not know. I didn’t know about this until a few weeks ago, when I entered an art gallery and saw a photo of an echidna in a display cabinet and asked why that was.

The gallery curator showed me Jeanette James’, a Tasmanian Aboriginal, who makes traditional jewellery, preserving centuries of Palawa cultural traditions, echidna quill necklaces.  Each quill is silver capped and strung with New Zealand flax.

She sources this protected species’ quills from road kill.  Jeanette is licensed to collect deceased echidnas.  Because their skin is so tough and virtually impossible to get the quills out without damaging them, the echidnas are buried between eight to twelve months to allow the body to decompose.  After being buried, the quills are easier to remove, clean and then make into jewellery.  I had no idea!


They are beautiful but I have a feeling it could be a little risky (painful) to wear.

I hope there are beautiful stories unfolding all around you and congratulations to all the recipients of the Queen’s Birthday 2019 Honours List.

A Troublesome Pair

I find koalas and echidnas difficult to paint.  It’s a hit and miss situation.  More often than not, I’m not totally happy with what I’ve painted… but are artists ever 100% happy with what they’ve painted???

I’ve often told myself, that’s it, give up on these marsupials and monotremes but there is something about the challenge and their cuteness that draws me back again and again to try this troublesome pair.  I once read, but unfortunately didn’t take note of who was imparting this wise piece of advice, ‘don’t strive for mastery. Strive for prolific and the mastery will come’.  In other words, practice.

Here’s this week’s attempts.

echidna August 25sml
An echidna hoping this log is hosting an ant party

koala August26sml
This week’s koala painting

Some previous attempts.

and more

For now, I think I will go back to painting birds, but I’m sure something will draw me back to trying to paint this problematic pair again.

Thanks for reading and I hope the upcoming week is a good one for you. 🙂

26 + 4 = 30: finishing the 30×30 challenge

Surprisingly, I finished the June challenge of producing a daily paint-only painting.  I was doubtful that I would be able to go the distance, but I did!

Here are my final paintings:

On June 26, I painted another echidna.  It’s the biggest echidna out of the echidnas that I painted (painted on a 20 x 20 cm paper made 100% from recycled cotton rags).

A hungry echidna

Next, I painted a platypus diving into cool, refreshing Tasmanian water.

June 27 platypussml
Platypus diving session

On Day 28, I quickly painted a kangaroo and joey.

June 29 kangaroo
I’m watching you!

On day 29, feeling buoyed by what I have been able to paint without using a single pencil mark, I thought I would tackle the BooBook Owl, an owl that I have been wanting to paint for a long time.

June 28 Southern Boobook owl
Southern Boobook Owl

On June 30th, the final day of the 30 x 30 challenge, I tried the Boobook owl again.  I didn’t quite finish it, but I think I did enough for it to count as my final painting of the challenge.

June 30 boobook
A Boobook pose

So, what did I learn from this challenge?  Well, I can no longer use “I forgot my pencil” as an excuse to not paint!

One benefit of participating in these types of challenges for me, is that I always paint something I’ve never painted before. I get quite desperate trying to find things I can paint quickly to meet the quota.  This challenge’s newbies were bees and an octopus.  I have had an unsuccessful attempt with an echidna prior to this challenge, so echidnas were a winner also, and falls into the new category for me.

I’m surprised that I could paint as many things as I did using no pencil.  From my understanding, the premise of direct watercolour painting is to assist in producing ‘loose’ paintings.  Without a few pencil guidelines, I found myself concentrating and giving more thought of where to put the paintbrush on the paper each time.  It impacted my painting choices and my looseness.  I think I paint looser when there are a few pencil lines to inform me.

All in all, in was a great experience and I loved seeing the posts of the amazing direct watercolour paintings from the participants in the #30x30directwatercolor2018 challenge.

Day 7 of 30×30 challenge

Another echidna for another day of the month of June challenge, painted directly with watercolour paint, abiding by the no-pencil rule.  I didn’t get ants in this painting.  I will use higher quality paper for day #8 so that the paint moves across the paper better to try my ant ideas.  I got so excited about my three separate echidna and ant ideas last night that I hardly slept!!   🙂 🙂

June 8 echidnasml
A Short-beaked echidna

Thanks for visiting and wishing everybody a lovely weekend.

Inktober Challenge – catch up

Wow! The last Inktober drawing I posted was Day 18.  I didn’t realise I was that far behind.

So, here’s a bit of a catch up.

For low-motivation Day 19, I drew a quick sketch of an Echidna, sometimes known as a spiny anteater.  They are a monotreme, egg-laying mammals, along with the platypus, and are native to Australia and Tasmania.  I live in Tasmania and I’ve seen them several times, often when they are crossing a road.  I love the way they walk, they dawdle and their whole body moves from side-to-side.  They are cute beyond words. I panic when they are on the road and want to jump out of the car and hurry them along before a car runs over them.


day 19
A quick drawing of an echidna

These are two photos I took of an echidna on the side of a road.

For low-motivation Day 20: a rabbit


day 20
a rabbit – not very happy with this drawing

For feeling more motivated Day 21: a kangaroo with joey

day 21
Kangaroo with joey

… and for Day 22, still feeling quite motivated, I drew a sculpture that is in front of the Government House Tasmania. Which do you like best? A photo of sculptures and buildings or a drawing or painting of sculptures and buildings?

day 22
A sculpture in front of Government House.  I ran out of room on the paper but I think that may be adding to the picture, rather than detracting from it 

and here’s the photo of the sculpture

sculpture at Government House

Thanks for stopping by and wishing you a lovely rest of the day/evening.