Art of Wild Abandonment: Possum Girl Sketch + Final

Good Morning Happy Wildlife Lovers!

Following the prompt “Place” from Junelle and Christy’s Art of Wild Abandonment workshop I hammered out some little rough sketches. I am getting better at scribbling a sketch like a quick note. I wish I were disciplined enough to sketch everyday like this it really pours out ideas on paper. Often times in digital scrapbooking my well went dry and I would have trouble jumpstarting it. The quick sketch is so helpful to work through an idea…colors, textures, even a flow of how to automatically comes to mind. What I struggled with is being okay with the messy, unfinished-ness of it. Not going back to tidy up. Yet, that soon left me on a wave of creative ideas, urging me on to the next step, choosing a sketch to expand on. Where I could fuss all I wanted! Weeee!

Rough Sketches…



After coming upstairs in the early morning hours a few weeks back and finding Pee Da Lee Possum sitting up on “her” chair. I wanted to capture it. I was a problem I needed to solve over time because Possums are nocturnal and my iphone is not. My digital camera is better in low light, but Pee is afraid of it, and snapping on the light would scare the sweetheart out of her. So I really had no solution. I just tried hard to remember it for my golden years until this class came along and the sketch prompt of place got me thinking I could draw this girl with all her personality intact. Crossing fingers on the last part.

The other sketches are…

~ duck pond out back with the little slant roof duck house with its back to the north wind.

~ tire swing in our side oak tree.

~ kitchen window I spend a bunch of time looking out of while I wash dishes and cook dinner.

~Del Norte Tacos, Godley, Texas. Has a wall of cord wood that has always fascinated me.


Expanded Sketch…


Used a brayer and green paint for background. Was going to really make a splashy background and the green was the start, but I loved the white space so I rolled with it. Gave the chair a whirl even though everything I am about said “You can’t draw furniture well enough to make it feel soft and inviting”. So I added the torn up area ( cats, possums don’t do this) to help me imagine “comfy chair”. Then put negative thoughts away. Toyed with different things hanging from Pee’s tail and in the end went with the bell. There was a large head space above I thought I would like when I started, but when it was close to done I didn’t like it, so I added the flower lamp. Possums LOVE grapes. Added some just for ya-yas. Possums will wake up in the middle of their night to eat grapes…they don’t like to wake up for anything! Well ours don’t.

This is a good place to note: Possums are wild animals. Please do not try to keep a possum as a pet. I know it looks like we have done this very thing, let me explain. We have 5 left over from our stint at wildlife rehabilitators. We have permission to keep these animals otherwise it would be illegal ( most US states)  These 5 have physical problems that kept them from proper release into the wild. Pee-Da-Lee failed to thrive as a youth and she is very small, too small to be released would have been owl bait. Her eyes cross, so she is slow to react to danger. Possoms live about 2 years, btw. They grow old in that time and die naturally. Pee’d  is nearly 2. She lived a year with another rehab-er before us.

Please don’t tell her it would just piss her off! Jack can’t take the heal biting in his sleep.

Caring for baby possums, young adults and even adults like Pee is messy, around the clock work. Many do not live if not properly tube fed as babies. Its 24/7 work. Not the fairy tale it looks like in these pictures. Pee does bite and most possums will kill kittens, small animals, etc. if they are rightfully wild. They should not be approached. They will defend themselves if cornered. If you can walk up to them, there is something wrong. Back away. That said, Possums’ low body temp doesn’t suit the rabies virus or other diseases. So you have no need to kill them for human safety. They eat snakes, especially poisonous ones. They are immune to most venoms. They eat many nuisance insects and are good mousers. They enjoy a large range, and love to wander, if you see one for a few day its likely to move on on its own. As soon as your strawberries are gone…right Janet B?? If you frighten one enough it will faint and appear dead. Leave it. 45 minutes or so it will get up and wander off on its own. This animal predates humankind. It will be fine without your help under most circumstances.

If you find injured or orphaned wildlife or are bothered by some and need removal, contact a local wildlife rehabilitator. Wildlife Centers, City Parks and Recreation Depts, and Zoos can provide referrals if you can’t find a rehabilitator on your own. 

Help pics of PeeDaLee…

p01  p02 p03  p04

One final note: Possums are marsupials, they carry their young in a pouch. Because of this they carry their extra weight not in their belly but under their arms…Peedie has fat pits! Really fat pits!


Final Drawing…

Neocolor 2 Watercolor Crayons, black pen, white pen ( see pen test


Made plenty of rookie mistakes …still loved the journey and how it ended.

Thanks for looking, Hugs and Kisses!

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8 Responses

  1. Donna
    Donna March 28, 2012 at 7:21 am | | Reply

    I really enjoyed seeing your process on this scetch Jodiann.
    I think it turned out deelish!
    Love the texturing on the chair,the little extra’s your eye wanted in the scetch:-)
    Love the green too.
    It is delightful:-)

  2. Donna
    Donna March 28, 2012 at 7:22 am | | Reply

    Gads,I do know sketch has a k,hahahaha

  3. Dawn
    Dawn March 28, 2012 at 11:26 am | | Reply

    This is delightful – a beautiful illustration!

  4. JanetB
    JanetB March 30, 2012 at 12:22 pm | | Reply

    Oh, I love this even more every time I look at it! Such an incredible talent you’ve found! And yes, that rascally wild possum gobbled up my ripe strawberries before I could get to him!

  5. Art Of Wild Abandonment: Blog HOP | Jodiann's Sky Pie

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