Tuesday, May 22, 2007

Meerkats


[Meerkat, colored pencil on textured paper, Iris G 2007]

The first real Meerkat (Timon doesn't count) I saw was from a National Geographic magazine, which I grabbed and paid even without checking out other articles. They are unbelievably cute and, according to the researchers at Kalahari Desert in southern Africa, highly socialized and very smart. For example, there are groups of youngsters who run the kindergartens/schools, where they look after the little babies and teach them various hunting skills. The lessons are even personalized; it takes less time for a smart baby meerkat to graduate from the school.

I spent the Sunday afternoon and evening sewing my meerkat, then some more time on Monday to do the fine embroidery for his eyes and nose. His name is Mango.


That's a tree seedling in the pouch he's holding. No, Mango is not a tree-hugger; he is a tree-planter instead. When he rests, he dreams that one day the desert will be all covered with trees and flowers.


Initially I wanted to practice my paper-folding skills and let him hold a huge silk daisy or calla lily. Then suddenly this tree seedling idea came to me, and I could not resist it... One of my friends once said that art is all about individual expression and it is "me", but sometimes I think art (and craft) can be more than that. And I have never been a fan of dark arts. On the contrary, I am a believer of sunshine, trees, birds and cats, and all other warm and beautiful things in life.

I'm thinking about auctioning Mango the hand-sewn meerkat and donate a portion to a tree planting organization. A little more research should be done and I need to find a way to do it efficiently. If you have any good suggestions, please leave me a message or email me at irisknits@yahoo.com. If you are interested in adopting Mango, please check back in a few days for more information, or contact me. Thank you!

14 comments:

Octopus Knits said...

I agree that Meerkats are very interesting creatures. Your Meerkat sketch is lovely and Mango is so cute! I'm not knowledgeable about auctioning and such, but maybe someone else will be?

Lucy said...

Iris - you are multi-talented!!What a beautiful sketch!! Meerkats are one of my very favourite animals - I have only ever seen them at the Sydney Taronga Zoo where they have a wonderful open enclosure - I have lots of photos of them! Thanks for the birthday wishes - I was very much spoilt by my family!!

Connie said...

Iris, very cute meerkat! And what a wonderful idea to donate proceeds to a tree planting organization.
Do you watch that Animal Planet Show called Meerkat Manor? It's really interesting to see all of the drama in a Meerkat clan.

EDNA HART said...

Iris, What a talented woman you are. The meerkat drawing and Mango are-well-just wonderful. I am very happy to add you to my blogs that I read (if that is O.K. with you)--Thanks for the supportive comment on my blog. Edna

Iris G said...

Oh thank you my friends! I didn't do much knitting this week because it was so hot here!
Connie, yes I have watched Meerkat Manor, and actually have read a few well-written papers on Meerkats...I once seriously considered going to Kalahari to study them!

smariek said...

Your drawing is great! ... and Mango is cute! I've seen Meekrats at the San Francisco zoo, lots of fun to watch.

fleegle said...

Completely adorable! I want a flock. A group? What is the word for a bunch of Meerkats?

Anonymous said...

The pencil drawing and Mango look very much like the cat in that van commercial (I cannot remember what kind of vehicle it is).
The cat opens the door of the vehicle with what looks like a sword. Then it turns the fan on and makes THE MOST satisfied (and smug) face as the air hits its face.
And that is it when it looks like a meerkat. Or at least your pencil drawing and Mango.

I was not 100% certain that a meerkat was a real creature until I started reading your comments.

Take care,
Janey
janey AT yahooknitting DOT ca

Jeremyinc said...

Hey if you like Meerkats I wrote a little blog post about meerkats too! Check it out Meerkats at Melbourne Zoo

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