A woman struggles to cope when she fails to get all her ducks in a rowboat. Several ducks are in the process of exiting the boat, one is in the water and two remain to console the devastated woman.
Getting ducks in a rowboat would seem easier than getting ducks in a row because there is a larger area for them to be distributed. There would also be no need for them to remain in a restrictive row on board a boat, unless perhaps they were attending a line-dancing river cruise or similar.
Walking in a line however, should come naturally to ducks. As ducklings they often follow their parents about in line formation, whether it be crossing the road or making their way to the water for a swim.
Rowboats on the other hand, would be more foreign to ducks and I imagine they would be scattered about on the vessel, trying to disembark for the water.
It’s unclear what purpose getting ducks in a rowboat would serve, but for whatever reason, the woman pictured above had her heart set on a boatload of ducks. Perhaps she was going to begin an amazing adventure with them as they sailed across the water.
The last time I drew ducks, they were on a truck in pursuit of bread. This could be the key to influencing duck behaviour. If had been used as an incentive for them on the boat, there may have been a different outcome.
Click on the image at left to view some production sketches of the Ducks in a Rowboat cartoon. The full file is 304Kb.
Some of the ducks went through a process of varying types and positioning during the production of this. One used to be on the hull, making its way under the seat and the mallard never used to be a mallard. No ducks were initially sympathetic to the woman’s suffering. I thought that was a little harsh and felt sorry for her, so now two are showing concern for her feelings.
As an afterthought, I’m wishing I had drawn one walking on the flat end of the oar as if it were ‘walking the plank’.