Monday, 27 February 2012

Week 8 - Dragaroo

One of my friends is planning a trip to Central Australia in a few months, so I thought as a public service I should warn her to watch out for the Dragaroo, scientific name Draco Marsupialis as notated by the eminent Dr. Ernest Drake in his research journal “Dragonology”.  

 Week 8 - Dragaroo

They are most often found in the Blue Mountains west of Sydney, but rare sightings of the desert species have taken place around Ayers Rock/Uluru in Central Australia. 

 Week 8 - Dragaroo

They have small vestigial wings, which gradually evolved to the smaller size as the tail and hind legs grew larger and stronger.  

 Week 8 - Dragaroo

They are not true marsupials as they still lay eggs. When the eggs hatch, the ‘dragajoey’ enters the mother's pouch, feeding on her milk and eucalyptus shoots (which aid flame development)
They are able to breathe fire but are well aware of the devastation fire causes in Australia, so they more often resort to breathing blue smoke which lulls their prey into a drowsy state.

 Week 8 - Dragaroo

The dragaroo lair is commonly a rocky cave but they can often be seen during the day resting under eucalyptus trees.
Of all the known species of dragon, the Dragaroo is the friendliest.


My Dragaroo was inspired by the illustrations in “Dragonology”

 Week 8 - Dragaroo

 Week 8 - Dragaroo

My first attempt was much too fat, so I unpicked the belly piece and recut it and at the same time took a slice from the adjoining sides. I “really” hate unpicking, but persevered.  
 I’ve drawn up a second pattern but haven’t put this one together yet. 

 Week 8 - Dragaroo
 Week 8 - Dragaroo

 Week 8 - Dragaroo

 Also had to take a slice off the joey as his head was too big for the pouch – although having seen wallaby babies up close in their mother’s pouch, they are so big you really wonder how they manage to get in there ….. and how mum puts up with them all that time! 


I made it from fawn coloured felt, hand sewing all the seams. Decided it needed some colour, tried coloured pencils first but they were too pale, so then tried dry brushing acrylic paint. 
Dry brush does not work too well on felt, you have to really work the paint on a palette until there is hardly any left on the brush.  I’m not sure if I am happy with the paint finish, but it’s done now! ….and I am really pleased with her, will definitely be making more of these.


Sally Westcott said...

She is beautiful! Is she looking for a new home? Not the Blue Mountains, but high up on Mt Wellington in Tasmania! Please? Can I buy her?

Unknown said...

Yes, beautiful Erica. Almost looks like an Albino before she is adorned.

Wilma said...

Love this dragaroo. Erica. I think the colouring looks good. Have you ever tried to colour felt with permanent markers and then added drops of rubbing alcohol to make it belled into the fabric. I have done it with vastly varying results.

Wilma said...

sorry - that should have read "bleed" into the felt ....

Mary Ann said...

I love what you have done. It really is an amazing reproduction of the picture in the book. I work with felt all the time but I have never tried colouring it. I wonder how fabric dyes would work...such as dye-na-flow.

Erica said...

thanks everyone,
Sally, I'm sure she would love to move to Tassie but at the moment I think I'd like to have all 52 dragons present at the end of the year. It is a pattern I want to try again though so I'll definitely keep you in mind.

Wilma and Mary Ann, thanks for the suggestions, the problem with the time scale I've set myself is that I am not leaving time to experiment like this, I will try both ideas and let you know in a later post how it went. The pencils I tried first were not good as they made the felt 'pill' which didn't leave a good surface for the paint.

essenzadifilo said...


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