P Is For Puffin

Puffin Doodlewash

Since I’ve already doodlewashed a pig, penguin and panda, and a platypus doesn’t have much color, I opted for a puffin. Although I guess I could have gone for a parrot, I figured that since puffins have also been nicknamed ‘sea parrots’ they covered all my bases. This was a quick doodlewash as I was running preciously short on time today, so my research has also been reduced to only three minutes, but here are some little puffin tidbits.

A puffin’s beak changes color during the year, becoming a dull grey in winter and the orange color shown here in spring.  In the wild, these little creatures can live for around 20 years. Their main predators are hungry gulls, which often snatch puffins mid-flight or swoop down and scoop them off the ground. Puffins themselves are quite the predator for small fish such as herring, hake and sand eels, often stuffing several in their mouth at the same time. This helping them achieve their second nickname of ‘clowns of the sea.’

Puffins are actually rather great flyers, flapping their wings up to 400 times a minute to reach flying speeds of nearly 55 mph (88km/hr). As if that was astounding enough, they’re also rather great swimmers, using their webbed feet as a rudder, and diving under water to depths of nearly 200 feet (60m) in search of the best fish. That was about all I could digest in my short search, but I’m sure there’s more to these little guys. Next up the dreaded “Q” so any and all help with this one is much appreciated. Leave your suggestions in the comments!


About the Doodlewash

M. Graham watercolors: Quinacridone Gold, Azo Orange, Pyrrol Red, Ultramarine Blue, Neutral Tint and Titanium White Gouache. 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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52 Comments
  1. Sabiscuit 2 years ago

    The puffin is beautiful, Charlie. I’ve looked forward to your posts every day. The tool specifications are also very interesting. I appreciate your sharing them as well. Have been dying to try some M Graham watercolours, too. And I am happy to see that your Lamy Safari remains your faithful sketching companion. Warm wishes. <3

    • Author

      Thank you so much!! 💕😃I’m so happy you like my posts, that means so much to me! And yes…I love my Lamy pens! I even bought a little case for the 3 of them…like they’re little jewels. 😊😊hehe (the third is brand new…with blue ink…haven’t posted anything with it yet! Just had to have it! Lol) And you should definitely try M Graham! They’re wonderful paints, that don’t dry out with vivid colors. 😃

      • Sabiscuit 2 years ago

        That is definitely helpful, Charlie. I have some piled up in my Amazon cart and now I can confidently make a few adjustments. Warm wishes for the weekend. xo

      • Author

        Oooooo….Amazon carts full of art supplies are exciting! Hehe…I’ve been cut off by Philippe, so I have to live vicariously through others now. 😊😊Have a fantastic weekend!!

  2. Susan Feniak 2 years ago

    Loving your Puffin! 🙂 Might as well cover all your bases! 🙂

  3. Jacob 2 years ago

    Well, yay! I’m totally chuffed you worked it out as you did, Charlie, for I was secretly hoping for a puffin out of all those mentioned (either that or polecat!). Aww! What a beautiful (and adorable!) character you’ve painted! Loving those oranges. And as ever, enjoying the tidbits… I think your puffin is a bit miffed by the ‘clown of the sea’ label!

    All I can think of for Q is Quail!

    • Author

      Thanks Jacob!! Hehe…puffins are pretty cool. I decided I would simply rather own a polecat instead so I’ve made that my new mission. Lol Yeah…I don’t think I’d call him ‘clown of the sea’ to his face. He can run much faster than I can! 😊 And yeah…not many options for Q that aren’t totally obscure. Hehe

      • Jacob 2 years ago

        Haha! I can see you aren’t going to rest until you get a polecat – it is your birthday coming up, remind Philippe of that. Don’t tell him about the fluid, though – let him discover that himself 😉

        Perhaps when you get one, you can call him Polo? 😉

      • Author

        Haha!! That’s an excellent plan!! 😃👍🏻

  4. memadtwo 2 years ago

    Your puffin does look a bit serious…or perplexed? Maybe he’s wondering how he ended up in a doodlewash!
    I too can only come up with Quail. Although if you want to dip into mythological creatures, there’s Quetzalcoatl. (K)

    • jmnowak 2 years ago

      There is a Quetzal bird, which looks like another in the parrot family!

    • Author

      Haha….in all the references I found I was struck by their eyes. They seem slightly concerned or confused by the shape of the eyelid. Funny creatures! And yeah…I’m trying to keep it real but there just aren’t many real Q animals. And I already tried a Quokka! Hehe

  5. Teresa Robeson 2 years ago

    So cute!! <3 Reminds me of a puffin hat a friend gave me. I like Kerfe's suggestion.

  6. MAGNY TJELTA 2 years ago

    Ooooooo i just love love love this one

  7. Jodi 2 years ago

    Oh Charlie O – your puffin is positively perfect! Another rockstar doodlewash!

  8. jmnowak 2 years ago

    He is cute! Whenever I see one, I always get the warm feeling and a smile comes to my face. I’m a huge fan! Us humans are predators of them as food, ‘tho I wouldn’t eat one. Since you’ve already done a lovely Quokka, how about its cousin the Quoll, which is quite cutely spotty. Lovely doodle, Charlie! 🙂

    • Author

      Thanks Janina!! 💕😃Glad you liked him!! Puffins have such expressive little faces! I just had to try and doodlewash one! And I never even heard of a quoll before… Australia has all the fun animals!! Hehe

  9. debiriley 2 years ago

    puffin with pride! you did it again….what a cute little guy this is, Charlie! Q is a quandary

    • Author

      Hehe! Thanks so much Debi!! 💕😃haha…Q is very much a quandary. I figure if I make it through this I’m good until X! 😊

      • debiriley 2 years ago

        oh dear! what will you do 🙂

      • Author

        Did something! Hehe…made it past Q! Yay! Lol

      • debiriley 2 years ago

        and what a wonderfully fabulous quail it is! … and You know, by now, how partial I am to Quails and their eggs! 🙂

  10. Sharon Mann 2 years ago

    I love puffins, Charlie, beautifully executed. How about Quail or Quagga.

    • Author

      Thanks Sharon!! 💕😃 Glad you liked him. And I had to look up quagga…cool! I’m learning a lot with this adventure!! Hehe

      • Sharon Mann 2 years ago

        I’m learning too, when you ask for suggestion I scurry to the Internet.☕️💕

  11. Teri C 2 years ago

    What a wonderful job on this amazing guy.
    How about Q for Quackers. Lol

    • Author

      Thanks Teri!! 💕😃 And haha!! Quackers is fitting for what I’m becoming trying to come up with something good for Q! Perfect! Lol

  12. Jill Kuhn 2 years ago

    Wow! What an AWESOME doodlewash, Charlie! 🌟🌟🌟 Your Puffin looks perfect! 💙 I find that sometimes it is good to be short on time as it prevents me from fussing too much. 😜 I quickly checked the Internet for animals that start with Q – I had never heard of a Quoll – might be fun to do. And there is always a Quail. We get quite a few of them in our yard. They are so fun to watch. Whatever you choose, I know it will be fabulous, friend! 😍🎨

    • Author

      Thanks so much Jill!! 💕😃 I agree…I’ve been liking my shorter timed efforts. Well…an hour would be a luxury these days so I guess they’re all fairly short. But this one was the shortest yet! 😊lol And yeah…I had never heard of a quoll until I googled it! Cute little things!! Animals are fun…I’m glad I stuck with just those.

      • Jill Kuhn 2 years ago

        Me too – I’m learning along with you, my friend! And your quick doodlewashes truly are fantastic! 😍👍🌟

      • Author

        Awww thanks friend!! 😊💕😃

  13. YesterdayAfter 2 years ago

    Beautiful choice Charlie I love it!

  14. Kari 2 years ago

    What a gorgeous puffin! Love your use of white! I was helping my daughter study for physics and they are learning about electric files and point charges and I kept having to solve for q, which is a charged particle.. Lol. 😁

    • Author

      Thanks Kari!! 💕😃 Glad you liked this…puffins are fun to doodlewash!! And see?! Solving for Q isn’t easy! Lol And I could never do it if physics were involved! 😊hehe

  15. M. L. Kappa 2 years ago

    Very interesting little guy!

  16. Rebecca 2 years ago

    Gotta love a puffin – especially your soulful chap. What about, generically, Quadruped? 😉

    • Author

      Thanks Rebecca!! Glad ya liked this little puffin! 💕😃 And hehe…I’m tempted to go generic, but I’m liking trying to get an actual creature to match! Glutton for punishment I guess! lol

  17. kathiwerner 2 years ago

    your puffin is great, what a nice character. By the way they have some problems with flying as they cannot land and start as good as other birds can.It is very funny to watch them landing (wildly flapping, trying to stop) and they start off the cliffs just jumping down in the air and then wildly flapping their wings. Q is difficult in english (in german we have the jellyfish – Qualle) – how about quetzal, a colorful tropical bird or the Quagga, an extinct Zebra species?

    • Author

      Hehe! Thanks Kathi!! 💕😃And yeah…I think that’s why they ended up with the ‘clown’ nickname…that and stuffing all the fish in their mouth at once! Lol And I love the German word for jellyfish. English wasn’t very kind when it comes to Q animal options!

  18. Tori 2 years ago

    That’s some perfect puffin! Hmm, Q is a tricky one! Looking forward to seeing what you come up with though.

    • Author

      Thanks Tori!! 💕😃Puffins are pretty fun to doodlewash…who knew?! And yeah…Q is concerning…but I’ll come up with something! Hehe

      • Tori 2 years ago

        I’m sure you will Charlie, I have every faith in you!

  19. Another beautiful job, Charlie! These guys are so cool-looking and you’ve nailed him! 💜

    • Author

      Awww thanks sis!! 💕😃hehe…yeah…they’re so cute that I hoped I could capture one in doodlewash. Glad ya liked him!!

  20. Cathe 2 years ago

    I’ve completely fallen behind in reader but luckily have seen your IG posts so I get my good Charlie fix early in the day. I love your puffin, he’s very handsome! I now know how Q and R turn out but still the end of the alphabet is so challenging!

    • Author

      Thanks! I hadn’t really looked that closely at a puffin before but they have a lot of character! Hehe…and yeah…I only do this and Instagram now so I figure I’ll see everyone one place or the other!

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