Puzzle does… Animal Self-Portraits.

We asked 13 of our team (because that’s how many of them were willing to respond to a no-context, mysterious challenge asking only that they join the call with a pen and paper) to draw themselves if they were an animal, with varying degrees of success. Here at Puzzle, we believe that all art is good art, and everyone’s creative pursuits should be celebrated… which is why George, one of our Community Managers, will be rating each drawing out of ten. This is strictly in alphabetical order, not order of score, so expect a rollercoaster.

  1. Carys

I’m not personally a fan of sloths, but I won’t let that cloud my judgement. I appreciate that you’ve given your sloth some nice personal touches, like the bob and a slice of pizza you seem to be holding with your feet… or is it dangling from the branch? I’m not sure about the inclusion of the artist’s thumb, and this leads us to question – was it intentional? Is it a commentary, a huge middle finger (or thumb, as it were) to the conventions of composition? Perhaps this is simply a bonus for us to enjoy. We can definitely tell this is a sloth, overall a nice piece of work, has good Carys energy, 7/10.

  1. Ella

Overall a very well-drawn cat. I like her dandy Victorian get-up very much, but it’s disconcerting to see a cat who is not only bipedal, but using her opposable thumbs to hold both a knife and a cigarette. However, if we’re being honest, that is exactly what Ella would be as a cat… so to be fair to her, she’s stuck to the challenge exactly. 8/10 even though this cat has extremely bad and threatening vibes.

  1. Fabienne

The bear faces us head-on, as does the weekend (at the time of drawing). Is “LET’S GET DRUNK” an invitation from the artist, or a demand from the bear? The eyes are mesmerising, seeming to move this pillar of partying towards us. Vaguely threatening, but sums up everyone’s feelings at 5pm on a Friday. I like that the bear is wearing glasses and has a Farrah Fawcett blowdry, very hip and 70s revivalist. 7/10 

  1. Francis

Ella insists she’s getting this drawing tattooed. I’m told this is an owl, but if I have to be honest, I truly think it’s so much more than that. It’s a deep analysis of the human condition, a paradigm-shifter, bird as metaphor for man.. I’m sorry, Francis, I honestly thought it was a turkey. If it’s an owl, you get a 2/10, if it’s a turkey, I’ll give it a solid 6.5. 

5. George – which is me! It wouldn’t be fair for me to rate my own drawing, so I’m handing over to Ella, who is my manager and has to be nice to me or else I’ll open a case with HR. Take it away, Ella!

Thanks, George. I’m not quite sure where to begin with this one. But there’s no doubt about it, this frog has BCE (Big Chaotic Energy). Is that a cap made out of hair? A mullet made out of caps? I’m not sure we will ever know. (I, of course, hope it’s the mullet.) I am a little concerned that the frog is wearing a jumper (presumably crocheted) and socks… but seemingly no trousers.. which begs the question, what exactly is this frog up to? How can anyone manage communities with no trousers on? 11/10 purely for the shading on the bum. 

Aww, thanks Ella – I agree that the lack of trousers was an oversight on my part, but I appreciate that you recognised my bum shading. I did put a lot of effort into that. Not sure you understand how rating things out of ten works, though, so I would rate your rating a 9/10. On to more ratings!

6. Han

I’m simultaneously bewildered and very excited by your choice to include a disco ball. What is the relevancy? I don’t know, but I don’t know if I need to know. It’s simple: Disco Dolphin is a way of life. I like the ombré fin and tail – however, I’m not sure why you didn’t also give the dorsal fin a nice balayage, too. Is this intentional? Nice composition and lovely flowers. 7.5/10.

7. Joe

Why does this penguin look so suspicious? What has he done, or what is he about to do? I don’t trust him, nor do I trust his gravity-defying eyebrows, and I wonder if the artist is trying to imply that he himself is a shady character. Solid product placement here, though, and consistent colour scheme throughout the composition. 6/10, because it is recognisably a penguin, and a good drawing despite the shifty eyebrows.

8.  John

Signing your work shows confidence, as does wearing a kilt, and I commend you for both. This actually looks like you, but I’m getting Midsommar vibes from the way you’ve superimposed your face onto a bear’s body. You get points for technical skill, for the fact that I could hear your Scottish accent through this photo, and also for the fact that you’ve explained why you’re a bear (but next time deffo check that you’re not accidentally overlooking any slang terms). 9/10.

9. Kawai

I’m fascinated by the bold curve towards the lower part of the canvas. Was this an abandoned first attempt, maybe, or a wave for this happy little whale to ride? Whales only blow water out of their blowhole when they’re above sea level, so I’m going to assume that this whale has yeeted itself the fuck out of the ocean and this is the wave from which it has leaped. A free spirit. Solid work, good drawing, but I’d like more personalisation or at least an indication as to why you think you’d be a whale – 6.5/10.

10. Lillie

The only Puzzle peep to use colour! I’d consider this a multimedia piece as you’ve incorporated light and carefully considered the composition and taken the time to make a photograph. This unicorn looks kind, but there’s a sadness in her eyes offset by the glow of golden hour. This should be in the Tate. 9/10

11. Martin

This is honestly a masterpiece. I have nothing negative to say about this one. Any attempt at meaningful criticism will always fall short of describing its true glory. Bravo. 10/10, and rightfully so.

12. Megan

Lots of technical skill involved in this one, and involves two of my favourite things – cats, and Lotus Biscoff Spread (not #sponcon, it’s just really good on toast). This piece evokes a long-forgotten memory, a past life, almost… A cat sitting in a ray of sunshine after polishing off half a cupboards’ worth of food. Lovely. Wish that were me.  8.5/10

And finally, lucky number 13… Sophie.

This is great. Happy little dog. She  looks very small and incredibly polite, but I’m not sure what type of dog this is. Maybe a very small Labrador? Either way, I hope she’s having a good day. I’d like more insight as to why you think this represents you, but this is lovely. 7/10

Ella and I will be setting weekly team challenges with a wide variety of skills involved, so keep an eye on our blog to find out what else we can make our coworkers do under the guise of team bonding. I’ve been George, you can find me on Instagram and Twitter, and if you’d like my opinion on anything… you need only ask.

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