As with many things that have become a long-term reality in my life, this project started acidentally.
On a lazy weekend I was overcome by the desire to paint something light-heartedly creative and silly. A housemate of mine happened to be around so I tried to explain it to her. "Something very silly without any specific concept behind it... like a monkey with sunglasses." She offered enthusiastic encouragement.
Some time later, the monkey was rocking his sunglasses, propped on display on our non-funcitoning fireplace. Everyone seemed to agree the monkey looked a bit like Harry... they were not wrong. Since I'd unwittingly painted Harry and had a great time doing it, it only made sense to keep going - so I painted his girlfriend (now wife) Ali.
The zoo has kept growing ever since.
Silly on the outside.
Smart on the inside.