The Danbo Brothers Discover the Artist Within


The Danbo Brothers painting in their studio.


“This world is but a canvas to the imagination.

~ Henry David Thoreau

The Silver Lining

The Danbo Brothers generally love to spend the whole of their days outdoors. But a recent Arctic cold snap, coupled with an inability (a temporary one, if I know the Danbos) to find suitable winter hats and scarves, has kept them housebound. Yet, to watch them happily while away their time indoors, one would never know they have such a decided preference for being outdoors. Their secret, I believe, is that they always seem to go with the flow—they simply have a knack for finding the silver lining on any clouds that drift their way.

Somewhere in a forgotten back corner of a closet, the Danbos unearthed my crusty old paints and art brushes. They blew off the dust and carted all the art supplies out to a warm and cozy corner of our abode which is always flooded with natural light. They called it their “studio” and they stayed there from morning ’till night for days, working on their art and talking and laughing quietly together. Where they got their mini-easels and canvases, I’m not sure—I suspect it may have been from the art supply shop down the block. Sometimes I’m beside myself with curiosity about those two—I should ask the art shop proprietor if two very short box-headed fellows happened to come by for any art supplies recently.


The Danbo Brothers discover some old art supplies.


When my daughter was about seven years old, she asked me one day what I did at work. I told her I worked at a college–that my job was to teach people how to draw. She stared at me, incredulous, and said, “You mean they forget?”

~ Howard Ikemoto

The Artists Within

It may be fortuitous that the Danbos have been confined to the indoors until such time as proper winter wear can be found—were it not for this confinement, the brothers might never have discovered their Inner Artist. And I have to say, I believe that these two may indeed have some latent artistic talent. They tell me that they have never before picked up a paint brush or played with paint, but you would never know it looking at their work. Although they both love bold colours, they clearly have their own unique styles. Big Danbo seems to go for simpler, larger forms, whereas Little Danbo has a penchant for more detailed work. One thing is certain: they are having a lot of fun!


A Colourful Mess


 “The whole culture is telling you to hurry,
while the art tells you to take your time.
Always listen to the art.”

~ Junot Diaz

The Danbo Brothers’ Winter Collection:

(Click on images to enlarge)

Paintings by Big Danbo:

Paintings by Little Danbo:


“Great things are done by a series of small things brought together.”

~Vincent Van Gogh




 The essence of all beautiful art, all great art, is gratitude.

~ Friedrich Nietzsche


Unusual Artists

The Danbo Brothers are quietly confident and not at all self-conscious or shy. When they finished up their first series of paintings, which they called “The Danbo Brothers’ Winter Collection”, they decided that it deserved a wider audience. Unbeknownst to me, they showed their work to a local art dealer and gallery owner, who was instantly charmed by both them and their work and decided to feature their Winter Collection in an art show entitled “Unusual Artists”. The Danbo Brothers thought the title odd, as they don’t consider themselves unusual in any way, but they were nevertheless delighted to be offered their first show. The local newspaper picked up the story, which created a bit of a buzz, and their first show was very well received. And all this because they had to stay indoors for lack of proper winter hats and scarves and simply chose to make the best of it! It may be cold and snowy outside, but in here the sun always shines bright when the Danbo Brothers are around.


The Danbo Brothers enjoying their first show at a local art gallery.


“Art must be an expression of love or it is nothing.”

Marc Chagall



The Danbo BrothersTo find out who the Danbo Brothers are and how they came into my life, check out my previous post: Meet the Danbo Brothers.





DSC_2572_6649SmFor more Danbo Adventures, see The Danbo Brothers Category








Original Artwork:

All original artwork by madlyinlovewithlife; © 2014 madlyinlovewithlife:

Cloud Watching; Acrylic on canvas 4″x4″
Bright, Bright Sunshiny Day; Acrylic on canvas 4″x4″
Snowman; Acrylic on canvas 3″x3″
Snowflake; Acrylic on canvas 3″x3″

Image Credits:

All photographs by madlyinlovewithlife; © 2014 madlyinlovewithlife



25 thoughts on “The Danbo Brothers Discover the Artist Within

  1. Oh, Jeannie, you’ve made my day! I just love the Danbo Brothers, and I eagerly await their return, so imagine my surprise today when I received your post in email and there they were: the Danbo Brothers! And this post/episode is just great because you have them painting — and they’re both so good, so talented. You know, I went back and read your first post, and I have to admit I didn’t know anything about the Danbo craze, but even still, I think your characters would make a wonderful children’s/adult picture book (with writing, of course). I just love the “world” you’ve created here. :)

    • Thank you for your lovely comment, Debra. I’m so glad you like the post! The Danbos are always so happy to hear that they brought a ray of sunshine into someone’s day. This was one of my favourite posts to do because I got to try painting on canvas with acrylic. Until this post, I’d never painted with acrylics before. I had some in my possession for some Christmas ornaments I made eons ago, but I don’t think the tubes have been opened for at least 10 years—I thought they’d be dry and unusable, but nearly all of them were still in pretty good shape. I was shocked! So, the Danbo Brothers are responsible for me trying my first ever paintings on canvas with acrylic. Ha…ha! I had no idea what I was doing, but I just went for it—exactly like the Danbos would have. Thanks again. :))

      • Well, the Danbo Brothers (and YOU) are wonderful artists! Acrylics on canvas excellently suits your creative endeavors! Paints must be like some foods — long shelf-life, LOL. :)

        • Thank you, Debra! I’ve never painted with acrylics before and, oh, what fun they are to play with! Something about using them makes me happy—the colours, the way the paint flows onto the canvas, the ability to create texture. I think the Danbos may have gotten me onto something new. And, ha…ha… your comparison is very funny! They must use the same preservatives! :))

          • Well, I’d suggest you keep painting with acrylics because you do lovely paintings with them! And if they make you happy, all the better! Those Danbo Brothers have been instrumental in leading you to a new medium, :) Re: preservatives — probably Coke is an ingredient! :)

  2. Hello Jeannie, It is a magnificent collection for the Danbo Brothers.
    Superbe work the artist…
    Have a beautiful day. Herve

  3. Oh my gosh…they are SO creative. Love their paintings!!! And you are pretty creative yourself ;) ;) Love this post!

    • Hello Diane! Thank you so much. These guys really are creative, aren’t they? And they have a way of inspiring my own creativity too! :)) Thanks so much for stopping by. Wishing you a great day! :))

  4. Dear Jeannie,
    I’m a little late to the conversation and everything has already been said, but let me add my “Wow” anyway :) I never cease to be absolutely amazed by the Danbo Bros’ (your) enthusiasm to try something new, and not only just ‘try’ it, but be absolutely amazing at it!

    I agree, that many of us (or perhaps all of us) have an inner artist within us, and all we need sometimes is a simple catalyst to draw it out. In this case, it was the cold weather and inability to go outdoors ;) I absolutely ADORE the winter-themed acrylic paintings especially the snowman and snowflake paintings by Little Danbo. I remember playing around with acrylics when a teenager, but decided watercolours were more ‘my thing.’ Speaking of which, my watercolours have been stowed away for years…maybe I should brush the dust off them and try and paint something…maybe ;)

    Bravo, Danbo Brothers and Brava Jeannie!
    I keep thinking each post if my favourite, but I think this one is my absolutely favourite :)))

    Cheers from rainy Tokyo,

    • Hello Takami! Thank you so much for your thoughtful comment. Yes, I agree that there is an Inner Artist in each one of us. Creative energy is endless and can be expressed in countless unique ways. We have only to follow where our own creative urge takes us. I love watercolours too, I also played with it when I was a teenager, though I never stuck with it long enough to really learn the medium. In fact, I recently pulled my watercolours out too. Have you ever tried watercolour pencils or waterbrushes? My partner got me a beautiful set of watercolour pencils and I got a few waterbrushes and they are fun to play with, though I’m still trying to figure out how to use them. Perhaps the Danbos have inspired you to pull out your old water colours simply to dabble for the fun of dabbling in them? Thanks again for stopping by. Wishing you a very bright, happy and colourful day! :)))

  5. I was absolutely thrilled to see the Danbo Brothers back in action today, because what would the holiday season be without two of my favorite friends around.I thank you very much for orchestrating their successful return and humbly request that you extend unto them my warmest regards for the up-coming Christmas season. All the best to you and yours. Until next time…

  6. You made me smile, again !!! Great artists those Danbo Brothers.!!! ;-)) hope the weather get a little warmer for you in AB.Here rain is back ( light rain to melt the snow that fall last Friday night).

  7. What a great post ~ clever, and most of all the creativity of the writing/story and especially the great paintings and photography (love the second photo ~ to me seems almost spiritual to a painter). This is a great post to wake up and enjoy the morning with. Cheers!

    • Hello Randall! Thank you so much for your kind words. I’m delighted that you enjoyed this post! I had a lot of fun doing it. That second photo is one of my favourites too. Thanks for stopping by and enjoy the rest of your weekend. ~ Jeannie :))

  8. You know Jeannie, I had never even heard of the Danbo brothers until Flickr.
    What wonderful images of the 2 of them with their paintings and I loved your story
    about their painting adventures. Jeannie you are so talented in your artwork, photography and writing. I so enjoy reading your work. Wishing you a wonderful weekend with those you love~

    • Oh, what a lovely surprise to have you stop by here, Dianne! Thank you so much for your very kind words. I’d never seen or heard of a Danbo until I joined Flickr either. And then it took me a while to figure out what they were. All I knew is that the photos others were taking of this rather odd character looked so fun and imaginative. And, for me, that’s what the Danbos are really all about: fun, creativity and delight! Thanks again for coming by. Wishing you and your family a happy weekend! ~ Jeannie :))

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