Fantasy oil painting “Checkerboard octopus”

Fantasy oil painting “Checkerboard octopus” ©YueZeng


As I mentioned in my post “Differences between Cuttlefish, Squid and Octopus“, both cuttlefish and octopus have excellent camouflage ability. Some experiments show that cuttlefish tries so hard to merge itself with a checkerboard surrounding pattern.

I can see they are doing everything they can.🤣 So the idea comes as how about they actually achieve that goal? To blend themselves into the checkerboard black and white pattern.

Digital sketch

I choose octopus eventually because its tentacles create more curves. If it was a cuttlefish then it would be just an oval shape in the background. But the thing is, even this creature can blend in 100%, it should have shadow under certain lighting conditions. In black squares I try to eliminate the edges. In white squares, the tiles have cool tone and the octopus has warm tone. So even the non-living thing and the living thing are all white, they are different white color.

Digital sketch “Checkerboard octopus” ©YueZeng


Well, this piece is for me to relax a little bit. I would like to have a straightforward painting every couple of complicated paintings. This would be similar to how it looks like if cuttlefish can truly camouflage itself into checkerboard pattern. Right? 🤣

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My paintings are an outlet to express the imagination I have inside my head that I can not put into words. After trying many mediums, I always find myself coming back to paint and brushes. In my current artistic practice, I use oil paint and mainly create portraits of mythical creatures and animals transfixed in the shifting colours of seascapes and landscapes. There is a natural spirit and magic to these creatures and their energy draws me in. Choosing to paint these creatures as real living wildlife rather than abstractions, I use bold and vivid colours to express the imaginary intertwined with reality, finding magic between the seams. Using a saturated colour palette, I create bold and striking imagery, contrasted between foreground and background, subject and landscape, and light and darkness. Weaving their bodies and the surface of the landscape into each other through organic forms and flowing brush strokes, I find beauty, strength and innocence in these creatures that reflect my inner world.