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Viewing: Blog Posts Tagged with: octopus, Most Recent at Top [Help]
Results 1 - 25 of 28
1. The Amazing Octopus


One amazingly interesting creature is the octopus; this cephalopod can twist and turn its body into many shapes, suction to all types of surfaces, and use a cloud of ink to distract predators. This week, researchers uncovered the California two-spot octopus’s ability to sense light through its skin.

When the scientist shone a beam of light on the skin of an octopus the chromatophores (pigmented structures in the skin) expanded and the skin changed color. When the light was turned off, the chromatophores contracted again and the octopus was back to its original color. Why does this happen? Scientists determined that the octopus’ skin has proteins called opsins that work with the chromatophores for this reaction to occur.

(Read more about the experiments here)

Changing colors is nothing new in the octopus species; they can become red with anger, or transparent in sunlight. The more tools the creature has to camouflage itself the better chance for survival in the wild depths of the ocean where predators are abundant.

To learn more about the octopus or how other animals use light in the depths of the ocean here is a short underwater reading list!

Octavia and Her Purple Ink Cloud

Octavia and her Purple Ink Cloud
Octavia Octopus and her sea-animal friends love playing camouflage games to practice how they would hide from a “big, hungry creature.” Octavia, however, just cannot seem to get her colors right when she tries to shoot her purple ink cloud. What happens when the big, hungry shark shows up looking for his dinner? This creative book introduces basic colors along with the camouflage techniques of various sea animals; a great introduction to marine biology!

DayDeep_128A Day in the Deep
Travel deep into the ocean way below the surface and you’ll encounter some creatures you never knew existed! This book takes you on a journey through the dark depths of the sea towards the ocean floor. Most ecosystems need sunlight, but deep in the ocean where the sun doesn’t shine animals have adapted some very interesting ways to see, protect themselves, and eat. Discover the unique habitats, adaptations, and food chains of these deep -sea creatures.

ocean hide and seek_PAPERBACKOcean Hide and Seek
The sea is a place of mystery, where animals big and small play hide and seek! Can you imagine a shark hiding in the light? What about a clownfish in plain sight? Don’t believe it? Then, sink into the deep blue sea with Jennifer Evans Kramer and Ocean Hide and Seek! Surround yourself with the vibrant ocean illustrations of Gary R. Phillips. The ocean is an old, old place, and the exotic animals in the depths have learned to adapt to their surroundings to survive. Can you find the creatures hidden on every page? Or will you, too, be fooled by an ancient, underwater disguise?

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2. Stop comparing yourself to others and find your own journey

Constantly comparing yourself to others can suck joy out of creating. Find your own pace and savor the journey.

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3. Verne in Vigo - Maeve Friel

I love coming across literary sculptures, whether they are the slew of Paddington Bears which recently appeared in London, a dapper James Joyce leaning on his cane on Earl Street in Dublin or Don Quijote and Sancho Panza trotting through the Plaza España in Madrid.

This curious monument of a man sitting amid the tentacles of a giant octopus is also a literary monument. It is in Vigo, in Galicia in North-Western Spain - but what is it?

It is a homage to the French novelist Jules Verne, often described as the inventor of the genre of science fiction, and to the Galician references in his much-loved adventure Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea. 

First of all, the sculpture reminds us of the terrifying chapter in which Captain Nemo and the crew of the submarine Nautilus are attacked by giant squid, as in the English translation, or more correctly by giant octopus (les poulpes, in French). Galicia, renowned for spectacular seafood, is particularly in thrall to the octopus and Pulpo a feira, octopus in the style of the fair,  is its signature dish - boiled in huge cauldrons by the pulpeiras, specialist octopus cooks, the tentacles snipped up with massive scissors and sprinkled with olive oil and pimentón.

But there is another chapter of Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea which takes place right in the Ría de Vigo, the Bay of Vigo. This was the real life location of a major naval disaster in 1702 when English ships burnt and scuttled the French and Spanish fleets which were returning from the Caribbean laden with treasure from the New World. In the novel, Captain Nemo comes to Vigo to loot the ships´treasure.

Around the Nautilus for a half-mile radius, the waters seemed saturated with electric light. The sandy bottom was clear and bright. Dressed in diving suits, crewmen were busy clearing away half-rotted barrels and disemboweled trunks in the midst of the dingy hulks of ships. Out of these trunks and kegs spilled ingots of gold and silver, cascades of jewels, pieces of eight. The sand was heaped with them. Then, laden with these valuable spoils, the men returned to the Nautilus, dropped off their burdens inside, and went to resume this inexhaustible fishing for silver and gold.
I understood. This was the setting of that battle on October 22, 1702. Here, in this very place, those galleons carrying treasure to the Spanish government had gone to the bottom. Here, whenever he needed, Captain Nemo came to withdraw these millions to ballast his Nautilus. It was for him, for him alone, that America had yielded up its precious metals. He was the direct, sole heir to these treasures wrested from the Incas and those peoples conquered by Hernando Cortez!

Don´t miss the monument to M. Verne if you are visiting this less well known corner of Spain, a place redolent with stories of shipwrecks, smugglers, fishermen´s tales and foot-weary pilgrims, the furious music of bagpipes and an all-pervading smell of octopus and sizzling sardines.  And of course, I recommend that you read the book too!


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4. Review: About Habitats: Oceans by Cathryn Sill

The largest habitat on earth, filled with all kinds of creatures, many yet to be discovered. Discover the oceans with your child in this enchanting book exploring the its beauty and diversity. Click here to read my full review.

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5. Charles The Octopus

Here is a new little friend I did using paper. I enjoyed cutting him out and making the wonky eyes. 

1 Comments on Charles The Octopus, last added: 1/25/2013
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6. liquid


gloop1_RobertaBaird2Gurggggggle swish…. slluuuuudge glump.… thorp…. bloop, bloop, bloop, bloop…..

0 Comments on liquid as of 5/17/2013 1:49:00 PM
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7. HoHoDooDa

I've managed to squeeze some sketching in between deadlines. 
Hope to do more soon.

0 Comments on HoHoDooDa as of 12/14/2013 9:06:00 PM
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8. Octo-Lin (the mandolin)

A couple of months ago,  I brought home a friend's electric-acoustic mandolin on long-term loan, cleaned it up, and then brought it to the local music shop to have the bridge lowered and the strings restrung. Not long after, my friend Dymphna said, "I must admit, I feel like you've got a new boyfriend who seems nice, but I just don't get."

"What's not to get?" I asked. "I know it's difficult, I know that some of my chords sound like cows in pain, but listen to this pretty D chord!" I played it. She shook her head.

"As a violin player, I feel like it's missing a bow."

I replied, "The mandolin thinks your violin's bow is superfluous."

I started to play ukulele as "cross-training" for guitar. Guitar was my first, best love, but ukulele was cute, accessible, and portable. Songs I composed on the ukulele sounded merry, while songs I composed on guitar sounded like dirges. I've not mastered either instrument and I don't have any unusual musical talents (enthusiasm and desire are my strengths). However, when I started to learn mandolin from the excellent Bruce Emery via his Mandolin From Scratch book, I remembered that, in addition to guitar, mandolin was an instrument my teenage self wanted to learn, but thought was out of reach. I am a long way from playing Led Zeppelin's The Battle of Evermore (my favorite song off of their fourth album), but I can play the New Britain version of "Amazing Grace" in G and D without too many gaps between the barred chords. Eventually, if I am diligent and practice regularly, I will get to melody lines. Someday, perhaps, I can work up to affording a relatively low-priced Big Muddy mandolin. 

In the meantime, I've got the "Octo-Lin," as I've nicknamed this Fender instrument. I bought a gig-bag and ironed on an octopus patch (Eight legs, eight strings!). Bede's banjo playing has progressed, and he is not used to being more skilled on an instrument than me, so now he gets to practice slowing waaaay down for me. We've been working on Jesse James and Gordon Bok's Dillan Bay, and are trying to make White Stripes' Hotel Yorba work, too. Others have already done it, as YouTube videos reveal.

I will end with a little octopus song I made up for a friend who would prefer spiders stay far away from her, and who wishes the children's song about an intrepid wee arachnid were less ubiquitous:

The teeny tiny octopus climbed up the sailboat mast
Down came the storm, but the octopus held fast.
Out came the sun and dried the ocean spray
Then, the teeny tiny octopus jumped down and swam away.

Sometimes, a cephalopod craves adventure.

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9. SkADaMo 2014 Day 8

hawktopus 2

Tentacles can be a real pain!

What is SkADaMo? Check it out here.

4 Comments on SkADaMo 2014 Day 8, last added: 11/9/2014
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10. Tentacle TANGO

A stretch to enable this interpretation....
The tentacle tango is to be avoided at all costs, no matter how beautiful and enticing the music may be.

22 Comments on Tentacle TANGO, last added: 7/23/2009
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11. Halloween Character

Another black & white for now ...( I'll try my hardest to get the last three illos watercolored up! ) ... this little Octopus and her sea star sidekick. ( ... this is my youngest daughter's costume this year ... her sister is going as a chinese dragon (I'm thinking Grace Lin's Year of the Rat may have had something to do with that choice) ... I tell you ... rivers, cherry trees, octopi, dragons .... thank goodness their Granny has the patience of a saint!) :)

Have a great Halloween everyone!! :)

9 Comments on Halloween Character, last added: 10/31/2009
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12. Michelle Henninger

"Octopus and Her Sidekick Sea Star"
Pen & Ink
© 2009 Michelle Henninger
To view Michelle's portfolio go to:

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13. Octopus!

End of school year, and this time the class performance is presenting the "growing' concept, how the children will grow and move on to the higher class, and with that to make the children realize that things around us are growing too, such as plants, animals, people.

I borrow an octopus costume from my friends, but she lost the head, so we have to make one, and I got this pattern , loveeely pattern from Purl Bee website, it use to be a bunny hat, but we transform it into an octopus hat, and it turn out to be a very comfy hat, I've got to make more of this for my self, isn't it cuuuteee.. :D

*and about the costume, kids loveee the tentacles,
Dian- your costume is grrrreat!

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14. GOONIES - 8 Arms To Hold You (Crazy 4 Cult 4 - G1988)

This is my piece for Gallery 1988's upcoming Crazy 4 Cult show in LA. I wanted to pay tribute to one of my all time favorite movies from 1985, the Goonies. Above you will find your favorites like Mikey, Data, Chunk, and Mouth. I also wanted to reference a deleted scene from the movie involving an octopus... All in all, I hope its good enough....

The show premiere will be tonight, hosted by Kevin Smith. Show coverage & video coming soon! Click on the postcard below for more info:

/Film has written a wonderful review of show, check it out by clicking the image below:

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15. Answer: The Biggest Decision I’ve Made This Year

I’ve decided. I don’t trust myself anymore. I’m going to let Paul the Psychic Octopus make all my decisions from now on. The kicker is, even when I think I’ve made the right decision, it always turns out wrong. It’s not like Tom Petty says. Even the losers get lucky sometimes. No, they really don’t.

That’s what I thought anyway, tonight when I couldn’t make it all go away. The night I had a chance to turn my whole life around. Go for the brass ring, like Grandpa always said. I miss him. I miss how he made life sound so simple. About an hour ago I reached for that big, brass ring–AKA my only shot at non-loserdom, my amazingly funny, yet insightful stand-up comedy act–but, as usual, I second guessed myself and it slipped through my fingers.

Losers don’t get second chances at anything. The only shot losers get in this world is if they’re funny. And after my first official attempt at funny, I prayed someone would just run me over and put me out of my misery, but do it in a way that would put a smile on my face. I worry about Paul. The minute he’s wrong he’ll have to resort to stand-up, and, well, it’s hard enough when you’re not an octopus.

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16. Octopus’ Garden

Octopus' Garden

Finally, something that oceanographers and old people can agree on.
Thanks Beatles.

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17. Mr Eight

It looks like I'll be working on finishing other author's books before I get a chance to work on my own - until I leave for New York anyway. Just finished the roughs for a Penguin Aussie Bite by Sharyn Eastaugh called 'Mr Eight.' It's a really funny little book about an Octopus with some serious anger issues (a Swordfish poked out one of his eyes in a fight) and a boy who wants a different sort of pet. I have always wanted to illustrate a book about an Octopus so was very happy when this one came along. These roughs are pretty much how they'll look when they're finished, only ink-washed up. See you soon!

1 Comments on Mr Eight, last added: 10/19/2010
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18. Octopus to publish Biggest Loser cookbook

Written By: 
Charlotte Williams
Publication Date: 
Tue, 25/10/2011 - 07:30

Octopus will publish the next tie-in title to ITV1 show "The Biggest Loser" next year, the third in the brand to be released by the Hachette publisher.

Publishing director Stephanie Jackson made the deal for UK and Irish rights with Shine commercial manager Maya Maraj for The Biggest Loser Cookbook, with plans to publish alongside the next series in January 2012.

The Biggest Loser Cookbook will include more than 100 recipes for calorie-counted meals, with a 14-day menu plan as well as shopping lists.

read more

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19. New painting: "OctoPete"

A brand new painting that I finished this week... let me know what you think. OctoPete.


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20. Comic: Fast Writer Envy

I'm posting some of my older comics here as I catalog and tag them in prep for a print book compilation:

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21. Amazing Mimic Octopus

It is well known that octopuses are amazing animals–they are intelligent, can squeeze through tiny spaces, and can change color at will. And apparently, they can also make fun of humans! Check it out:

It seems like the octopus was poking fun at the divers watching it!

To read more about amazing octopus abilities, read Octavia and learn how she defends herself from predators!

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22. Octopus

I would like to give being an octopus a try! To have all of the arms- oh my!

2 Comments on Octopus, last added: 2/4/2009
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23. Samples: Benjamin’s Octopus

These samples are of a book I worked on a-way back in September ‘08 titled, “Benjamin’s Octopus”, about a little boy who dreams about swimming with the fish when part of his dream becomes reality. It’s a little reader (to help kids with particular vocabulary words) that accompanies a reading unit. The client was Rowland [...]

6 Comments on Samples: Benjamin’s Octopus, last added: 5/11/2009
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24. octopi

1 Comments on octopi, last added: 5/5/2009
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25. SFG: Fish

Who's taking who for a walk?

My very first submission to SFG and I'm late. I'm just happy to be here.

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