McDonald's Frog (watercolour) by Laura Grogan

McDonald's Frog (watercolour) by 

Black ink and watercolour on hot-pressed 300g 100% cotton rag Arches watercolour paper. Original size 40 × 28 cm.

This painting was commissioned as an award for Keith McDonald in honour of his contribution in the discovery of frog declines in QLD Australia, which led to the subsequent recognition of chytridiomycosis as a cause of frog declines globally. It features the frog that was named after him, the Mt Elliot Nursery-Frog (Cophixalus mcdonaldi_), and the Cairns Birdwing Butterfly (_Ornithoptera euphorion).

McDonald’s Frog (or Mt Elliot Nursery Frog) is a small (2cm long), nocturnal, leaf litter-dwelling rainforest frog that is restricted in distribution to Mt Elliot (30km SE of Townsville). Current conservation status: endangered.

View the ink draft

View the frog detail

I’m passionate about ecology, wildlife epidemiology and environmental conservation. I hope that I can raise awareness about the conservation of biodiversity through my art and research (currently researching the devastating fungal disease, chytridiomycosis, which is threatening frogs worldwide). Help spread the word about conservation!

View Full Profile


  • Sharon Williamson
    Sharon Williamsonalmost 5 years ago

    Wow, amazing work Laura :)

  • Thanks Sharon. It’s good to finally be able to post it – I’ve been working on it pretty solidly for a month and a half! :)

    – Laura Grogan

  • Marie Magnusson
    Marie Magnussonalmost 5 years ago

    it is stunning Laura!

  • Thanks! Largest work I’ve ever done… what a fantastic learning experience! I think I’m actually starting to like 100% cotton rag paper, though it was a huge challenge in the beginning! :)

    – Laura Grogan

  • JulieWickham
    JulieWickhamalmost 5 years ago

    Absolutely fantastic – you have told a full story here and the detail is just great

  • Thanks Julie! Since it was a big project, I thought it wise to take a few progress scans along the way… never know when you’ll really regret a brush-stroke! And there’s no ‘undo’ button with ink and watercolour unfortunately! :)

    – Laura Grogan

  • Conoro
    Conoroalmost 5 years ago

    This is superlative Laura, each one I see is better than the last :-) How long did it take you to do this piece? I know how long it takes me, so this must have taken hours and hours! oxox

  • Thanks so much Constance! Haha… yes, hours and hours… multiplied by rather more! It has effectively been my after-hours second full-time job over the last 1.5 months. I learnt a huge amount doing it, though! I never anticipated cotton-rag paper to be so much more challenging than regular paper! When they say watercolours are unforgiving, it is that much worse with cotton paper! :)

    – Laura Grogan

  • Barbara Applegate
    Barbara Applegatealmost 5 years ago

    Awesome work the details are just amazing.
    Beautiful, Beautiful, Beautiful!!!!!!

  • Thanks Barbara! I enjoyed doing this one! :)

    – Laura Grogan

  • maria paterson
    maria patersonalmost 5 years ago

    What a beautiful process you have

  • Thanks so much Maria! Now I just need more excuses to play around with watercolour! There is just so much still to learn! :)

    – Laura Grogan

  • susan stone
    susan stoneover 4 years ago

    I just love this. It’s like you made a frog fantasy world. I love the soft colors.

  • Haha! Love your interpretation! Thanks Susan! It only occurred to me after I’d mapped it out that this tiny 1 inch long frog is eyeing a birdwing butterfly more than 3x its size!

    – Laura Grogan

  • Stephanie Smith
    Stephanie Smithover 4 years ago

    Amazing detail! The colors are so vivid!

  • Thanks Stephanie!

    – Laura Grogan

  • Karen  Hull
    Karen Hullover 4 years ago

    Your work is inspirational Laura – I don’t know how you find time to do all the things you do – such a talented lady!!! :))

  • Thanks Karen! I owe a lot of it to Red Bubble and wonderful people like yourself! It is great to be part of such an encouraging and vibrant art community! :)

    – Laura Grogan

  • vanitastic
    vanitasticover 4 years ago

    This is really amazing. The smallest details and beautiful textures!

  • Thank you so much! After reflecting on the amazing artwork here on Red Bubble, I’m actually feeling quite critical of this piece! So many new techniques I want to try out in the next one! I guess that is what it’s all about! :)

    – Laura Grogan

desktop tablet-landscape content-width tablet-portrait workstream-4-across phone-landscape phone-portrait
desktop tablet-landscape content-width tablet-portrait workstream-4-across phone-landscape phone-portrait

10%off for joining

the Redbubble mailing list

Receive exclusive deals and awesome artist news and content right to your inbox. Free for your convenience.