Although, like so many, I'm ever-so-fond of Beatrix Potters wonderful characters and their stories I had decided from the out set to try and create an Australian character but in the Potter spirit.
As we live in Tropical North Queensland the rainforest was a good place to investigate and low and behold I discovered there lives a diminutive little creature known as The Musky Rat Kangaroo.
This little mammal is the smallest and most primitive kangaroo in the world and has several features that reflect lifestyle and body form of their tree-dwelling ancestors. Most kangaroos are active at dawn and dusk, resting during the day, however Musky Rat Kangaroos are only active during daylight. At night they retire to a nest made from leafy twigs which they gather and transport in their short prehensile tails. Rain forest fruits are their favourite food. In good times these seeds and fruit are often scatter- hoarded or buried haphazardly, then later dug up and eaten. Of course not all seeds are recovered by the Musky so this actually aids in seed dispersal and contributes to maintenance of the rain forest ecosystem.
Musky Rat Kangaroos are unique in the kangaroo world because they give birth to twins and sometimes triplets, the young joeys spend about 21 weeks in the pouch after which they are evicted and spend more time in the nest where they are suckled by their mother when she returns from foraging. Musky Rat Kangaroos are only found in large remnant patches of tropical rainforest, and today their populations are believed to be vulnerable but secure. They have a distinct musky scent and go about their business on the rainforest floor gathering fruit and seed that lie among the leaf litter.
So I imagined my Ms.Musky-Roo dashing about, very busy indeed, wearing her best hat of course, and dashing back to all those children with a large basket full of favourite rainforest fruits.
Ms.Musky-Roo is 9 1/2" (24cm) tall (a true life size). I hope you like her, I had a lot of fun.
All the entries are now available for you to view and to vote for your favourite in the Peoples Photographic Choice, voting continues until June 1st, so please visit here to vote and see a wonderful collection of work. All the entries will be available for purchase from June 1st and winners of the hands on judging will be announced on June 5th.
The Australasian Creative Design Awards always offer a wonderful challenge for artists. Many thanks and congratulations must go to Sandi Smith for creating these awards and her diligent care in ensuring their integrity.
Congratulations to everyone,
And a thank you to Martin Cohen and Julia Cooper for their great little book Rainforest Animals (Created, published and printed in Cairns)
Beary happy hugs,