A Silver Fish

Day 9 - #WorldWatercolorGroup Silver Fish in Blue Water #doodlewash

When choosing silver for a prompt today, I think I was just thinking about shiny things and how I love them. I didn’t actually know what one might paint for this one. I looked up references of actual raw silver and wasn’t inspired, but then somehow stumbled across a silver fish instead. Not to be confused with a silverfish which is a weird wingless insect that scurries around wreaking havoc in homes. Yuck! But, instead a shiny cute fish that looks like it’s made of molten metal. Cool! That’s at least the hope, as this is another fast and furious doodlewash that is lucky to resemble a fish at all. Apparently the reason why some fish have evolved to become silver, or at least appear that way, is in order to protect themselves from predators. If they were blue, to match the water, they would still look like little dark shadow puppets to a predator swimming around underneath them. The reflective nature creates the perfect camouflage at all angles. So, yeah, nature is just really, really clever.

The weird and wild defense mechanisms that creatures use have always fascinated me. So much more elaborate and interesting than the human fight or flight options. Though many of these mechanisms employed by animals would admittedly be super freaky if they were employed by humans. Skunks come to mind, and their unique ability to squirt foul-smelling juice out of their bum. Some lizards shoot blood from their eyes while a particular type of bird vomits something stinky and orange onto its attackers. Things get super weird for the sea cucumbers, though, as if their name wasn’t already odd enough. They start their defense by releasing a sticky poisonous toxin. If that doesn’t work, they pretend to be dying by shaking around and contracting their muscles so violently that some of their organs slip out of their anus. Their enemies just sort of move along rather sheepishly after that, as really, what else could one do in that situation.

As ever, I’ve gone off on a bit of a tangent here, and even I no longer understand what I’m talking about. But it does make me think of all the little defense mechanisms I employ every day. Things like pretending that I’m responding to a text in order to avoid any conversation at all on an elevator. Nothing major, just something small that keeps me happily in my own little bubble when that’s where I prefer to be. Those who think of themselves as a “people person” may find this behavior shocking, but those fellow introverts out there know just what I mean. I enjoy being around other people for short periods of time, but then need my own time to unwind with the thoughts swirling in my head. I’ll always come back, but I sometimes go just a bit icognito. Quietly disappearing to float for a bit in my own happy little world, much like a silver fish.

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About the Doodlewash

Sennelier L’Aquarelle: Red Orange, Phthalocyanine Blue, Cobalt Turquoise, Ultramarine Deep, and Payne’s Grey. Lamy Safari Al Star pen with Platinum Carbon with black ink in a little red cloth hardbound l’aquarelle journal I found in a Paris shop.
 Day 9 - #WorldWatercolorGroup Silver Fish in Blue Water #doodlewash
Profile photo of Charlie O'Shields
Creator of Doodlewash® and founder of World Watercolor Month™ (July) and World Watercolor Group™. Sharing daily watercolor illustrations and stories while proudly featuring talented artists from all over the world! If you’d like to be a guest artist on Doodlewash.com, contact me!
Published in By Charlie
22 Comments
  1. Yonni's Wacky Workshop 5 months ago

    Although you have given us an awesome silver fish, I would love to see your version of a silverfish! 😎 As much as they give me a case of the epizooties, I think you could make one that actually looks presentable! 👍

    • Author

      Thanks!! 😃💕 hehe… I considered it, but they’re just so creepy looking that I wasn’t sure I could make them look presentable! Lol

  2. memadtwo 5 months ago

    I totally identify with the introvert tactics, Charlie. Maybe we just need our own little silver coverings so the rest of the world could be distracted by their own images and leave us to our own inner ramblings!

  3. Sharon Bonin-Pratt 5 months ago

    I think I get it – if you’re wearing your silver cape, we should just pretend we don’t see you and leave you alone.

    Your little fish here is a charmer even if his silvery body is meant to confuse the big guys looking for dinner. The amazing thing is how many other sea critters flaunt all kinds of color down in the briny deep. I think it’s why aquariums are so appealing to us land locked humans – getting to see so much sea life is not gonna happen unless it’s brought to us in a tank.

    And I have to wonder how in the world you come up with so many interesting facts – you must be the one impossible to beat at Trivia Pursuit.

    • Author

      Thanks, Sharon! 😃💕 Oh wow… I’m going to ask for a silver cape for my birthday now! Hehe… just kidding… it will be art supplies as usual. 😊 Actually, I’ve always loved trivia bits, but I’ve been learning a ton more trying to come up with something to write about.

      • Sharon Bonin-Pratt 5 months ago

        (Ask for the cape – couldn’t hurt. Wouldn’t it be fun to paint in a cape? I think I’m going to ask for a cape!)

      • Author

        (Yes!!! We should totally get them!)

  4. onyajay 5 months ago

    Hi Charlie, I’m a new follower! Your posts are really interesting and observant in more ways than one. You seem to think a lot while you’re painting, or before and after it anyway. I am a watercolour artist, and often in my own head a bit too much when splashing around. It’s hard for me to think outside the….well….page. It’s like…ah well, back to ‘real’ life.
    Nice work, I look forward to seeing more. Maybe I should post a picture or two of mine on my blog…mmm….
    Anyway, great work. 🙂

    • Author

      Thanks! And thanks so much for following! Welcome my friend!! 😃💕 Yep… I paint what comes to mind that day and then ramble on about whatever that makes me think of. hehe… you should definitely share your work!! And if you’re not already, join us in our Facebook group and post there as well! Here’s the link: https://www.facebook.com/groups/worldwatercolor/

  5. Jill Kuhn 5 months ago

    I think your silver fish looks fantastic, Charlie! 🎨👍 I’d love to come up with something wise to say but I’m too tired tonight. I don’t think I’ve had enough time by myself… 😉 I can totally understand needing time away from everyone! Cheers! 🍷🐟

  6. oilyfarmgirl 5 months ago

    I think the silver fish looks very nice!

  7. A very happy silver fish, nature has some great methods for so many uses 😀

  8. lizintheshed 5 months ago

    When I saw the title, I thought you were going to beautify a little insect that likes damp corners…. but no! Instead, I end up feeling bad for sea cucumbers, which was unexpected! Good start to a Friday….

    • Author

      Thanks so much! 😃💕 lol… yeah, I really have no idea where these posts will go when I start typing. I just couldn’t bring myself to sketch a silverfish… they really creep me out. But now, I’m hoping also to never ecounter a sea cucumber. 😉

  9. snigdhadotcom 5 months ago

    Awsome 👍👍

  10. Teresa Robeson 5 months ago

    LOL! I love the way you ramble. <3 You are really good at rendering fish…wonder if there's a job for fish portraitists? 😉

    • Author

      hehe… thanks so much, Teresa! 😃💕 I really appreciate that! I haven’t tried many fish. I’m sure there is a job for it though… there seems to be a job for everything! Lol

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