Monday, May 16, 2011

Illustration Friday: The Great Grey-Green, Greasy Limpopo River

"'Goodbye. I am going to the great grey-green, greasy Limpopo River, all set about with fever-trees, to find out what the Crocodile has for dinner.'" - The Elephant's Child

On long car trips when I was a kid, we used to listen to a tape of Rudyard Kipling's "Just So Stories." One of our favorites was "The Elephant's Child" which tells the story of how a curious Elephant Child went down to the banks of the very muddy Limpopo River to ask a crocodile what he eats for dinner. But when he asked, the crocodile grabbed his nose and streeetcccched and streeeetccchhed it out. And that is how the elephant got it's long nose.

I started coloring in my water design in brown tones originally thinking it might look "giraffe-y" for this week's Illustration Friday theme: safari. In the end though, I thought it looked like mud so I added some green as if the crocodile is slipping silently through the muddy water on his way to pull on a Elephant Child's nose. Ouch!

"The Elephant's Child sat there for three days waiting for his nose to shrink. But it never grew any shorter, and, besides, it made him squint. For, O Best Beloved, you will see and understand that the Crocodile had pulled it out into a really truly trunk same as all Elephants have to-day." 

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