Australian all-round entertainer, Lord Rolf Harris OBE, MBE, has been commissioned to paint a portrait of her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II to commemorate her 80th birthday next April.
"I was sitting at home playing with my didgeridoo when I got a call saying the Queen would like me to do Her for Her birthday," said Rolf proudly. "As a loyal Commonwealth citizen I didn't feel I could refuse; it is such an honour. I've seen a lot of pictures of Her over the years, artistically done, mind you, and have often fantasised about doing Her myself. As I have never done anyone this old before, with the right amount of strokes and a bit of touching up here and there, I could do Her proud."
When asked how he would like to have Her, Rolf did not hesitate. "Standing up," he grinned.
The BBC are said to be interested in filming Rolf in action. "It will make riveting viewing," said a producer. "Everyone loves The Wizard of Aus. He is a true professional. It's been a while since he's come onto our screens and I for one would love to see Rolf work his magic on Her Majesty on prime time television."
Last year the BBC also filmed Rolf as he completed the world's biggest painting by numbers of Constable's Last Supper in London's Trafalgar Square. "There were gasps of amazement as Rolf revealed his enormous piece to the crowds," said the programme's narrator. "The sheer enormity of it put Nelson's Column to shame."
The bearded Antipodean, who became a household name in the 1960's and has had recent acclaim for his pro bono veterinary work at the Animal Hospital, is also a pioneer of Aboriginal music and culture and has delighted generations with his artistic skills inspiring thousands of youngsters to paint on their mums' best sheets with leftover emulsion from the shed using their dads' boar bristle Harris paint brushes.
Sir Les Patterson, Australian Cultural Attache to Great Britain, was not available for comment. "He can't get to the phone right now, possums. He's down under," said a breathless, Australian housewife superstar.