The Chuckwalla – Daily Sketch 07/25/12

The Chuckwalla

Several weeks ago I was visiting a cactus garden on Camelback Mountain in Scottsdale. As I walked along the trail I took advantage of the deepest, coolest pools of shade provided by the mature mesquite tree canopies overhead. In one such spot, I stopped to catch my breath, have a drink of water and listen.

My eye was caught by the distinct sound of rustling nearby. At the base of a boulder, a lizard took shape out of the desert landscape. I watched fascinated as she frantically scratched around in the dust. Suddenly a larger, darker version appeared somewhere near my feet in a distinctly defensive posture, making me uncomfortably aware of my bare ankles. (Have I told you we have poisonous snakes here?) They were both approximately 8 – 9 inches long, with a wide midsection, flat head, and a fat tail. I snapped several photos and moved on up the trail, delighted by the encounter and wondering what the heck I’d run into.

I had met a pair of female Chuckwallas, one of many lizard varieties native to Arizona. They will be appearing with more detail in my drawing E-Tutorial, How to Draw the American Southwest, Animals & Cacti of the Arizona-Sonoran Desert. Here’s a sneak peak!

 

I have also started a new blog: www.makeartbehappy.wordpress.com…and will be posting inspirational and motivational thoughts and suggestions for increasing creativity and improving life.

About Wendy Fallon

By day I am a technical writer, and by night and on weekends I am an artist and creative writer. Having lived in Phoenix, AZ with my husband Tim for 23 years, I find the urban wilderness in which we lived to be endlessly fascinating. Our home was tucked up against South Mountain, the largest city park in the U.S. The canal slashing across the base of the mountain provides inspiration for paintings, drawings, and sitings of wild coyotes, skittering fluffs of newborn quail, lizards and constant change.
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