The Project: Create three sculptures in bronze of black squirrels for a park in Council Bluffs Iowa being designed by artist Brower Hatcher. Two casts would be made of each squirrel and be placed around a plaza in the park with an enormous abstract sculpture/fountain being built by Brower.
The Solution: When I researched squirrels, photographing and studying the local grey squirrels, I found that they are really like rats with bushy tails. It is their movements and mannerisms which make them endearing. I tried to find poses which suggested movement and exaggerated some of the anatomy to make them cuter and more how we think of squirrels rather than rigidly copying the ugly truth.
Recollections: I had never heard of a black squirrel, but they exist in Iowa and are very popular. The park at Council Bluffs hosts an annual Black Squirrel Festival, and there is a law that makes it a crime for anyone to antagonize a black squirrel!