There’s no doubt that bunnies are just about the cutest little things ever, with their giant ears and lovely little eyes. Calling one a “bunny rabbit” is perfectly redundant and unnecessary, of course, but somehow makes them seem even cuter still, so it’s become quite common to say. As a kid, I was a huge fan of Bugs Bunny, a tall gray cartoon rabbit with a perfectly naughty, yet harmless, demeanor. Something I’ve always admired in people as well. But I really wanted one as a pet. I think I must of have met some other kid along the way who had one and this, combined with my penchant for the cartoon, created a new longing. I never got one, or any of the other random animals I suddenly wanted to invite home. I was given a little golden hamster instead to placate me, but I always felt like I was missing out on something. I’m sure that the bunny rabbit and I would have gotten along famously and gone on amazing adventures together. At least, that’s the memory, and like so many things in life, the memory of what could have been is almost more magical than what could ever have actually happen in the first place.
By the time I was a teenager, the 80’s had arrived and with it came a fashion trend of carrying around a rabbit’s foot on a keychain for luck. These could be won at carnivals and found in vending machines. This was born out of a far older and creepy as hell Celtic tradition that treated burrow-living rabbits as mystical creatures that could communicate with the spirit world. There’s more to that story, but it’s too creepy to post here so I recommend you google it if you’re interested. Being a rabbit-lover, the idea of carrying around a severed foot was beyond disturbing. Adding to the oddness was that they came dyed in a rainbow of impossible colors. Perhaps this was to distance the fact that it was indeed the foot of an actual bunny, but I always felt that a foot on a rabbit was so much cuter. And, certainly luckier for the rabbit, to be sure.
Looking back at those times, I have to stop and wonder how most of it happened. There were so many fads that seem bizarre to me today, and others, although still bizarre are managing to make a comeback. What we crave is sometimes inexplicable and it’s easy to be caught up in the fads and trends of the times. And no matter how kooky or crazy, they each become part of our story. Sometimes to look back on and giggle about while, other times, we experience a real sense of loss. Anytime you love something, even if it’s only for a short period, a change occurs. It’s a powerful feeling indeed. And though we move on and find other things to be fascinated by, there’s always a piece of that feeling still there. An urge so small that it no longer seems relevant, but it’s all part of our story. The same urge that many guest artists as well as myself describe about wanting to create art again after many years of making nothing at all. Through art, I can make things appear and fulfill those cravings that I had as a kid. With a few strokes of pen and some splashes of colors, I can make my little childhood dreams come true. After all, I’ve always wanted a bunny rabbit.
About the Doodlewash
Da Vinci Paint Co.: Nickel Azo Yellow, Opus (Vivid Pink), Leaf Green, Cobalt Turquoise, Terra Cotta and Cobalt Blue. Lamy Al-Star Safari Fountain Pen with sepia ink in an A5 Hahnemühle Watercolour Book. Want to purchase a print of this doodlewash? Send me a note with a link to this post, and I’ll add it to my shop!
Creator of Doodlewash®, founder of World Watercolor Month (July), World Watercolor Group™, and host of the Sketching Stuff Podcast. 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!