Lucky Nickel
I am illustrating a new children's book for Jim Gamlin, Author of A Home for Nickel. The Book will be titled Lucky Nickel... the story of Nickel the sea turtle. It should be out late this year or early next year.

The illustrations are 10 X 14" acrylic paintings on watercolor paper.

Once upon a time there was a Green Sea Turtle who lived in the ocean somewhere around southwest Florida. She enjoyed spending her days there. She swam in the sea and fed on the underwater plants that grew green and thick on the ocean’s sandy bottom. She especially liked to sunbath as she floated on the surface of the water. She was a very lucky turtle!
Several years ago, somewhere on a secret beach, many of her brothers and sister sea turtles had not been as lucky as she had. As they slept in their egg shell cradles deep under the sand in the nest their mother turtle had dug out for them, they knew that when they hatched, they would have to make a dangerous run across the beach to the ocean!
When the day came and the baby turtles finally hatched, they crawled up through the sand and burst into the world like bubbles in hot chowder! Now they would have to make the dangerous run across the beach to the ocean. As they flip-flop-flapped along the sand, birds and crabs would try to catch and eat them. There were many other dangers they might face before swimming for the very first time in their new ocean home. Many of the little turtles did not make it. The lucky ones did. Our turtle was one of the lucky ones!
Many years after our turtle had reached the ocean, she had grown big and strong as she fed on the sea grass and swam about her underwater world. But one day as she was resting and floating dreamily on the ocean’s surface her luck ran out. A passing boat struck her. Its propeller blade knifed deeply into the rear of her shell. She was badly injured and could no longer dive down to the sea grass beds to eat. On that day, she was not a lucky turtle!
Many days and weeks passed as our turtle floated on the ocean’s surface. She couldn’t eat and grew weaker and weaker. Finally she washed up into a spot under some mangrove trees and waited to die. Her luck had run out!
A short time later, a marine biologist named Matt was studying fish in the same area of the mangroves. He saw something under one of the trees. It was our turtle! Matt could see that she was hurt. He floated over to her and picked her up out of the water and placed her in his boat! She was still alive! He had rescued her just in time! She was a very lucky turtle!
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