L is for Lion

Lion Doodlewash

Although I nearly did a doodlewash of Lovebirds in honor of Valentine’s Day, I decided instead on a lion. It occurred to me that not everyone who wants to be is actually in a relationship, so this day can often be a unwelcome reminder of what’s missing. I figured the king of the jungle was something everyone can appreciate regardless of their current romantic situation. For those of you still longing for Valentine’s Day imagery, I invite you to simply focus on the pink nose as it does rather resemble a heart.

This is a rather young lion with a lighter mane. The darker the mane, the older the lion, which is sadly, exactly the opposite in humans. African lions are the most social of all the big cats and live in prides. Though the females do most of the hunting, the male still gets to eat first, which is hardly shocking but still terribly unfair. The heaviest lion on record weighed in at an incredible 825 pounds (375 kg) which still pales in comparison to the heaviest human who squashed the scales at a grotesquely bloated 1400 pounds (635 kg).

A lion’s mating ritual is rather grueling and takes place over 5 days during which they mate every 15 minutes. This basically means that if the lion has the stamina to last the entire time, they can mate over 250 times in less than a week. An exhausting thought, I’m sure, to human couples who are feeling lucky to simply have their ritual Valentine’s Day mating. Odd mating habits aside, the lion has always been a symbol of strength and courage, so however you spend this Valentine’s Day, I hope you’re doing what you love most, and most of all, doing it with the heart of lion.

About the Doodlewash

M. Graham watercolors: Quinacridone Gold, Azo Orange, Burnt Sienna, Ultramarine Blue, Pyrrol Red, Neutral Tint and Titanium White Gouache. Lamy Safari Al Star pen with Platinum Carbon black ink and second Lamy Safari Al Star pen with Platinum Carbon sepia ink in a 5″ x 8″ 140 lb. (300 gsm) Pentalic Aqua Journal


Recommend0 recommendationsPublished in By Charlie
  1. imustseemovie.com 7 years ago


  2. Eric Disney 7 years ago

    LOVE. Happy Valentine’s Day!!!

  3. Susan Feniak 7 years ago

    Instead of letting my imagination run amuck I will just say, what a beautiful facial expression. Particularly that nose. 🙂 ;0

  4. Teresa Robeson 7 years ago

    *snort*!! You need to mention that this was a PG-13 posting. Hahaha! I love your lion so much! <3 It makes me want to break into song…"Born freeeeee! As free as the wind blows…" 😀

  5. Marcus 7 years ago

    Thank you for the lion.

  6. Nancy 7 years ago

    Well, now I understand why they are “king of the beasts.” 😉 Great Doodlewash wash, though. Love his expression.

  7. angieabk 7 years ago

    I have never thought about the color of the mane being a sign of age. That’s fascinating. Thanks for sharing.

  8. Catherine Johnson 7 years ago

    That’s a lovely idea and fabulous painting, Charlie!

  9. Fabio 7 years ago

    Very precious, Charlie! You know how to entice us to go from the wonderful painting until the last word of your great text. And you have empathy, and passion, in between. Thanks so much! Hope you are having a great evening! 🙂

    • Author

      I’m blushing Fabio!! What a wonderful thing to say! I’m so happy you like the words and images so make. It means a lot to me! 😊😃

  10. theturtle 7 years ago

    Your doodlewash of the lion is beautiful (and it’s not only the nose that is cute , his eyes have a very sweet expression ), but it was your words that I loved more than anything 🙂
    Turtle Hugs

    • Author

      Awww thanks!! I’m so happy you liked the words! Sometimes I’m not sure what to write so I’m super happy you liked this!! 😊😃Hugs!

      • theturtle 7 years ago

        We love your doodles 🙂 for themselves and it’s great that you started inserting the coulours you used , for the benefit of other doodlers <3
        You really don't need to write anything to go with them – they are IT – I think any words that you have the time/and or inspiration to add are a Bonus – the stories , the humour , the trivia are the cherry on a perfectly scrumptious cake 🙂 🙂
        Turtle Hugs

        • Author

          Glad you liked that addition…then realized I hadn’t added it to this post! Hehe….whoops! It’s there now! I had big dreams to do a demo video, but I just don’t have time to do anything but my little daily painting. 😊

  11. Damita M-S 7 years ago

    Beautiful and Majestic! Happy Vamentine’s Day!

  12. Wonderful soulfulness in his lovely gaze and eyes, Charlie. Really nice job with this. Again, terrific underdrawing makes the painting shine even more. Thanks for sharing! 😀 Happy Valentine’s Day!

    • Author

      Thanks so much Laura!! ❤️😃I’m glad you liked him. I’m realized just how much I’m real a sketcher at heart lately. Hehe… Nearly brining the drawing to a finish so it’s been a bit like a coloring book lately. 😊Which is super fun too!! lol

  13. Jill Kuhn 7 years ago

    Thanks for the roar (lion speak for laugh)! 😜 Amazing details in your doodlewash Charlie! ❤️ I vote for a monkey for M! 🐵😃👍

    • Author

      Haha! You’re quite welcome, Jill! Thanks! 💕😃And I didn’t know you also spoke lion. Your skills know no limits my friend! 👍🏻🦁hehe… Love it!!

  14. Carmel Campbell 7 years ago

    I think you like doing fur! You do it well! How about a Marmot or Millipede for M

    • Author

      Hehe…thanks Carmel! 💕😃 Fur totally freaked me out at first, but now it’s become sort of just a fun problem to solve. And thanks for the M suggestions!!

  15. Jacob 7 years ago

    Eeek! You’re spoiling us, Charles – your lion has all the majesty and commands all the awe and respect that a real one would (and should!) I’m digging his hairstyle, too… oh they’re so wonderful. I can’t stop thinking of the Lion King now; I need to see that film again. (yes, *again*! There’s a shocker!)

    You didn’t ask as you were too busy talking about mating, but I presume you’re still open to suggestions for the next one. 😉 M is for Mongoose. Millipede. Magpie. Muntjac. Mockingbird.

    • Author

      Awww thanks Jacob!! Glad you like the hair. A lions mane always reminds me of Fabio Lanzoni (who reminds me of a lion). And I was thinking of the The Lion King when I was doodlewashing this one! Hehe… It’s a great movie… And one that I would be horribly depressed to discover you hadn’t seen! Lol And yeah, I totally forgot to ask for suggestions! So thanks!! 😃

      • Jacob 7 years ago

        Hahaha, wow, now I’ve looked up this chap of which you speak, I can see the similarity! The Lion King is beautiful. I’ve also seen the West End play which was great, but the film is the magic for me. I must make my niece watch it sometime, and try not to cry. I think I did the last time I saw it! 😛

        • Author

          I’ve actually never seen the stage version! Yeah…it’s not a good Disney film unless you cry a little! (Also kill off a parent of the central character…that’s usually a go-to option as well)

          • Jacob 7 years ago

            We went as part of a school trip (we also went to see Chitty Chitty Bang Bang and We Will Rock You). It was really impressive! And ha, you’re so right! I was most nervous going into watching Frozen with my niece, with all that I’d been told about it; I felt quite proud of myself when I got through the whole thing without a blub.

          • Author

            Yeah…Frozen wasn’t too sad. More about those darn catchy tunes! Hehe

          • Jacob 7 years ago

            And how! Once in your head you just can’t let it go, let it go… 😉

  16. Teri C 7 years ago

    Love the way his head seems to be saying, ‘awww’. You are gathering a wonderful collection of animals. HVD💓

    • Author

      Awww thanks! Hehe! Appreciate it Teri! 💕😃Yes…I’m rather liking the little gallery that forming on this one! 😊

  17. Sharon Mann 7 years ago

    Your Lion looks so cuddly, Charlie. Beautifully rendered! And interesting Lion tidbits. My vote for M is monkey!

    • Author

      Thanks Sharon!! 💕😃Glad you liked this post. Didn’t realize I’d end on mating, but I never know what I’m going to do next. 😊lol And yay! I love monkeys!

      • Sharon Mann 7 years ago

        We can always count on you for all the facts, lol!

  18. Arvind 7 years ago

    Great article Charlie. A very soulful lion and love how you get those textures so seemingly easily.

    • Author

      Thanks Arvind!! The textures are getting easier each time I practice them. They were super hard at first and frustrated me, but now I find them fun! Hehe

  19. memadtwo 7 years ago

    Ok, cuter than lovebirds any day.
    Monkey is good. Year of the Monkey and all. (K)

    • Author

      Thanks Kerfe! 💕😃Hehe…glad you liked this. I just couldn’t resist those eyes!! And yay to the year of the Monkey! I only sketched the plastic kind previously so I like that one!

  20. Kari 7 years ago

    Well, what a stamina the lion has! Lol.. And the poor female.. Love his face, full of youthful mischief! I hope you had a wonderful Valentine’s Day! ❤️❤️❤️

    • Author

      Yeah the female really gets a raw deal in lion world. Yikes! 😳 hehe … Glad you liked my first lion attempt, Kari! Thanks! And I hope you had a wonderful Valentine’s Day as well!! ❤️❤️😃

  21. kathiwerner 7 years ago

    Terrific lion! I vote for mammoth.

  22. Jodi 7 years ago

    Well Charlie O this might be my new fave! Absolutely breathtaking! And speaking of taking your breath away … WowA on those mating rituals. Thanks for the beautiful art, the opportunity to learn something new everyday, your humor, your kindness, and your charm. YOU Charlie O are checking of the Doodlewash!! ❤️

    • Author

      Awww really? Your new fave eh? Cool! Thanks Jodi! 💕😃 Yeah, there’s a reason why “heart of a lion” became a thing and “mate like a lion” never quite took off. And I think autocorrect made me “checking of the Doodlewash”? Hehe you’re too sweet!! 😊❤️❤️😃

  23. Jodi 7 years ago

    Oh brother! KING of the Doodlewash ! Dang!

  24. PS monkeys are cool but manatee! This was in my head in the middle of the night. I forgot to throw out an M animal and … manatee and marmot too. Ok monkeys are also cute. Had to come back and say this lol.

    • Author

      Hehe!! That’s awesome! ❤️😃I got a Philippe a little ManaTEA tea infuser for his stocking this year! They’re cool creatures! Not sure what I’ll choose yet. I haven’t even done all the expected creatures yet! So many to doodlewash!! Lol

  25. blogturtle 7 years ago

    the lion is turned out fabulous. in fact, i like all your animals from the alphabet, charlie.

  26. Snehal Kank 7 years ago

    wow amazing illustration Charlie! Love this one! I like this concept of alphabates with illustrations 💜

  27. YesterdayAfter 7 years ago

    I love Lions such a beautiful animal you captured it beautiful I like it very much the expression on his face is precious!

  28. Cathe 7 years ago

    Charlie, your loin is incredibly handsome. I believe I have fallen in love with him!

    • Author

      Thanks so much Cathe!! 💕😃 And I’m thinking autocorrect was at play there and you didn’t mean to say “your loin is incredibly handsome” hahaha! That made me laugh at loud!! Too funny!! Love it!!

  29. M. Caulder 5 years ago

    Beautiful lion!

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