February 3 update

I’ve started drawing those animals from the last blog update, starting with the coconut octopus. It was fairly easy to decide the positioning of the animal, because I roughed out the first pose, and loved it immediately. It had kind of a groggy look to it which I think makes it cuter. This animal will be on the same page as the cardinal.

During the decision making process, the spot for the red skinned animal was almost tied between the coconut octopus and the tomato frog. There were pros and cons to both. Both were cute and sounded interesting. That’s all that really counts, but I also want to make sure I have a variety of different kinds of creatures. There are a million different colors of frog, so I wasn’t going to have any shortage of that kind of animal. On the other hand, octopi are known for their ability to change the color of their skin, and I wanted to make sure that the animal I chose to represent the color actually did. So I decided to research the coconut octopus first, and it turned out to be an extremely unique octopus. The coconut octopus is also known as the veined octopus because while it can change it’s skin color to white when upset, it always has red veins covering it. Most of the time, when it is relaxed, it is entirely red. That makes it a truly red octopus, and a prime candidate for the book. Also I discovered many things that make them one of my new favorite animals. Because they aren’t as good at camouflage, they are known for finding coconuts that are split in half and sunk to the ocean floor, and holding them around itself to hide from both prey and predators. They also do this with shells and other materials they find around. In addition to that, they are one of only two octopus species that like to “walk” along the ocean floor with two tentacles. That is why I ultimately ended up choosing this creature to represent red.

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