Oysters On The Half Shell

Oysters on the half shell doodlewash watercolor sketch of oysters with lemon and bread on plate

I’ve honestly only tried oysters once in my life, but Philippe mentioned loving them so I decided to try a doodlewash version. The one time I did try them, they were okay, but I wasn’t craving them after, so I just never went in search of them again. We’ll be having them soon to cure his craving, so we’ll see how it goes this time. One thing I know I can’t stand is cooked oysters, but that’s all I grew up with. Every family gathering there was the dad and uncle pot of oyster stew nobody else cared for with a bowl of oysters crackers next to it. I used to love the crackers, though, so that something at least.

But there are definitely plenty of people who love oysters as every year nearly two billion pounds of these little mollusks are eaten. I tend to think about what the thing you’re about to eat has eaten and sometimes this is disturbing. An oyster’s diet consists mainly of animal waste and decayed plants, so it’s a bit of a turn off if I think about it too much. Legend has it, of course, that they are actually quite a “turn on” and the classic lover Casanova used to eat 50 for breakfast. Some scientists now say that it’s true they are an aphrodisiac due to being high in zinc, particularly for men, for reasons I can’t talk about without giggling.

Long ago, people were often advised to never eat oysters during months that didn’t contain the letter “R.” At first this seems completely batty until you realize that the only months that don’t contain that letter are warm weather months for many climates. Back in a time when there was a lack of proper refrigeration methods this made keeping food cold difficult from May through August. So here’s a raw little offering for the doodlewash dinner for anyone who loves them. And if they happen to make you frisky, then that’s just a nice added bonus I guess.

You’re all invited to a Doodlewash Dinner Party during the month of May! Just tag your food or drink image #doodlewashdinner and I’ll feature you and your culinary creations in a delicious Doodlewash Gallery at the end of the month! 


About the Doodlewash

M. Graham watercolors: Quinacridone Gold, Gamboge, Pyrrol Red, Burnt Sienna, Ultramarine Blue, Permanent Green Pale, and Neutral Tint. Lamy Safari Al Star pen with Platinum Carbon black ink in a 5″ x 8″ 140 lb. (300 gsm) Pentalic Aqua Journal

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!
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61 Comments
  1. and to think that I love raw oysters as opposed to cooked…..then to read what their diet is……yuck….. I don’t think I can ever eat them again, ever! lol

  2. Teri C 1 year ago

    The only thing I like about oysters is sketching their shells. Lol
    Ps, the pancakes were great this morning.

    • Author

      Thanks so much Teri! 😃💕Yeah….I think I liked sketching them better, but we’ll see when I try them again!! And thanks on the pancakes!

  3. Laura (PA Pict) 1 year ago

    I cannot abide oysters. It’s the texture probably more so than the taste. It just makes my gag reflex go into overdrive. Where I used to live in Argyll (Loch Fyne) is famous for its oysters but I just couldn’t will myself to keep trying them. Your painting of them, however, is delicious. I especially love how you’ve rendered the interior of the shells. Very nicely done indeed.

    • Author

      Awww thanks Laura! 😃💕 That’s high praise for a food you don’t like. Hehe…I’m not sure yet if I’m a fan or not. They didn’t impress me on the first pass, but we’ll see. I think I agree on the texture from what I can recall! Hehe

  4. Thanks for sketching one of my favorite sea foods! Yummy

  5. YesterdayAfter 1 year ago

    Beautiful doodlewash Charlie! They looks delicious on your plate with the lemon 😉 I tried them once or twice long ago Just like you 😉

    • Author

      Thanks so much Carolina! 😃💕 So glad ya liked this. I’m determined to try them again soon just to see what I think. Hehe

      • YesterdayAfter 1 year ago

        Ahaha and you never know maybe you like it better this time or…not! 😉 lol

  6. Jodi 1 year ago

    Gawgeous raw oyster dawling!!!

    • Author

      Awww thanks Jodi!! 😃💕 For sneaking onto WordPress…hehe… Hope your vacation is a blast…looks like it from the pics! 😉😃

      • Jodi 1 year ago

        Having a great time 😉

  7. Sharon Mann 1 year ago

    Wonderful doodlewash
    Charlie, but I’ll pass on the oysters, hehe!!

  8. Sand Salt Moon 1 year ago

    Wonderfully rendered. When I worked in New York, I ate at the famous Oyster Bar at Grand Central Station twice! My dad always liked raw clams and oysters too…

    • Author

      Awww cool!! I bet that was a fun experience and that the oysters were yummy!! Glad you liked the doodlewash, Cynthia! 😃💕

  9. Another beautiful dish, my friend! I’m a crab and shrimp (ooh, and clams and mussels) girl myself. hehe

    • Author

      Thanks, Laura!! 😃💕Hehe…yeah I think I prefer all those over these, but maybe P can convert me when we go have them.

  10. The doodlewash is lovely, but I’ve never eaten oysters. There’s always something on the menu I’d rather try or would like to eat more than oysters.

    Bottom feeders…a lot people don’t eat them, but I love Shrimp, crab, and lobster!

    • Author

      Awww thanks!! 😃💕Yeah…I have to admit to loving all of those bottom feeders! Lol But like you, I don’t usually chose oysters when given any other options.

  11. Jacob 1 year ago

    I’m reminded of the unpleasant Mr Bean sketch every time I see anything of oysters!

    While reading this, I thought, “well, thank heavens he didn’t go into any detail about their diet” and then read the next sentence 😉 How nice. Wonderful though this doodlewash is, hmm… I’m not sure I’ll be rushing out to try oysters any time soon. Still, all the more for you chaps!

    • Author

      Glad you liked the sketch, Jacob! 😃Yeah…the diet is unfortunate and I should have probably omitted that bit. Kind turned me off of them too! 😊

  12. Sharon Bonin-Pratt 1 year ago

    I’m laughing so hard I’ve nearly fallen off the chair. Aphrodisiac oysters but you can’t talk about it – good grief! I will never be able to look at an oyster again with laughing. Everyone will think I’m crazy. Oh well, what’s new?
    Love the painting, you did a great job, I love the composition and all the textures, but I will stick with the lemons and hot sauce. You can feed the raw oysters to the cat.

    • Author

      Hehe…thanks Sharon! 😃💕 I’m hoping I didn’t scare everyone away with my descriptions! 😊 But I’m sure your cat will LOVE these!! Lol

  13. Sharon Bonin-Pratt 1 year ago

    Ohhhh noooo! I will never be able to look at an oyster again withOUT laughing. What happened to my brain check?

  14. Jill Kuhn 1 year ago

    I think Midge might be a fan, I’ll ask her! Lol! 😝 Amazing doodlewash, Charlie! Even though I’m not a fan of this slimy appetizer, I’m impressed with your details! 🌟✨🌟

    • Author

      Haha!! Midge would LOVE these, I’m sure!! Thanks Jill! 😃💕Glad you liked the doodlewash… we’ll leave the eating to Midge! Lol

  15. M. L. Kappa 1 year ago

    FYI, people, before oysters are brought to the table, they are left for several days in a tank with only clean water flowing through so everything is filtered out. So you can afford to be adventurous, Charlie! The oyster stew sounds gross, though. But the painting came out great!

    • Author

      Awesome! Thanks for that info… I nearly set people off of them with my description! Lol And oyster stew is pretty gross still though. Glad you liked the doodlewash! 😃💕

  16. funyfunblog 1 year ago

    I have more durian in me mind…..

  17. Well I love your doodlewash, but I have never ever had an oyster, and to be honest I don’t think I want to try, especially if they eat waste, yuk, I don’t get how you can taste them anyhow, as they get slung to the back of the throat and gulped down in one ghastly glug….sorry to all who love them, this is only a vision of how I think the experience would be, lol,

    • Author

      Thanks Rebecca! 😃💕Glad ya liked the doodlewash. But yeah… oysters are sort of a love it or hate it sort of thing it seems. My verdict is still out as I’m determined to try them again. Especially after M.L. Kappa told me they are cleaned out first! Hehe

  18. Phil Cooper 1 year ago

    I love this painting, the oysters looks so fresh, straight out of the sea . Down here in Whitable the oysters are famous as being some of the best around, but I can’t bring myself to eat one – I can enjoy yours though, looking so splendid on the plate!

    • Author

      Awww thanks Phil!! Appreciate that! 😃 Yeah… I’m determined to try them again in the next few weeks just to see what I think. I like them as objects though, even if I decide they don’t make good eating. Hehe

  19. As much as I love the deep fried oysters at Pearl’s in NYC I’ve only ever eaten one raw and I can safely say I’ll never eat another. Yours look good enough to, er – eat, Charlie!

    • Author

      Thanks so much Michael! 😃Hehe… anything fried is usually amazing! But sounds like your one-time experience with raw was enough to finalize your decision! lol

  20. debiriley 1 year ago

    beautifully painted Charlie! fabulous 🙂
    yes they have loads of zinc…. but who can eat them raw or boiled in stew?
    I can eat them deep fried, that is really healthy. lol

    • Author

      Thanks Debi! 😃💕 Lol… yeah… I’m thinking fried may kill most of the health benefits, which is sad because fried things are ALWAYS the best! Hehe

  21. Cathe 1 year ago

    Your doodlewash is perfect Charlie. I love the texture you created with the ripply edge of the shells.
    Okay I actual really like oysters but I think its because I was introduced to them by someone who really knew a lot about the different varieties and shared all this insight with me. I’m a fan of the the west coast oyster. That and a good cold beer, a few friends can make for a pretty wonderful experience. I hope you discover something tasty when you give them a try.

    • Cathe 1 year ago

      Sorry somehow I doubled my comment!

    • Author

      Thanks so much Cathe! Glad you liked this! 😃 💕And yay! A true oyster fan. Philippe ate them all the time growing up in Paris so I’m hoping he’ll qualify as my expert. Hehe… it makes all the difference to have someone who knows their way around new food!

  22. It is truly an experience watching others try oysters. In my fish fabrication class at culinary school, I had the pleasure of watching the drastic face changes of those in my class who tried raw oysters for the first. It is something one must acquire I suppose. I don’t mind them however, but the have to be the freshest of fresh!

    • Author

      I feel that way with most fishy things…freshest or I’ll just pass on it. Oysters I think may be an acquired taste. I didn’t love them on the first pass, but in definitely going to try again!! Hehe

  23. Kari 1 year ago

    I do love them. And yes, I don’t particularly like the cooked version. Great rendering.. They even look slimy.. Lol. Yummy!

  24. theurbanblender 1 year ago

    Oysters are overrated…..I really tried to like them,but they taste of salty seawater and a little slimy going down…

  25. theurbanblender 1 year ago

    Just draw them…..that’s satisfying for all of us….

  26. The Sunbaked Artist 1 year ago

    Wow! This looks fun to do!

  27. […] Continue reading.. […]

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