And the Category Is … Things That Begin With the Letter “Q”!

I’ve launched into the newest alphabet story painting, this one for a baby named Quinn. I’m touring through my 1940’s dictionary and finding all sorts of quirky characters like quaggas, which are extinct forerunners of zebras. Spell-check trips over “quagga.” In fact, spell-check wouldn’t recognize a quagga if it grazed through a field of apostrophes (also soon to become extinct) on its way to grammar’s house.

The client, a great-grandma to Baby Q, composed her own charming and loving rhyme for the piece, a version of “Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star.” After experimenting with various fonts, I settled on Curlz. It’s whimsical but still readable, which my eleven-year-old proved handily, at a distance of six feet. The Curlz Q’s look like vines and tendrils, and seem ready to twist off the page.

This is what’s fun about study drawings: paying close attention to how the zebra-stripes come together on quaggas’ necks and faces.

And realizing that quinces look like someone tossed lemons, apples, pears, and peaches into the gen-mod pool and hit the Jacuzzi button.

And finding that quasars call up old TV ads for the Motorola Company. I can even hear the voice-over singing, “Quay-zar!”

And discovering that quetzals are truly resplendent, with tail-feathers triple their body length, and brilliant blue-green plumage and jewel-red breasts.

I’m excited about this one. I’m envisioning a night scene, with a quartet of quaggas playing stringed instruments and a sky full of stars. Maybe a quasar or two. (But no quadratic equations). Algebra II remains, to this day, a quagmire of questionable quantitative quandaries, even though the instruction I received was of the highest quality! And you can quote me on that.

Q is for Quinn