Hello—my name is Richard. Eric. Disney. AKA R.E.D. (Follow me on Facebook and Instagram!) Given that I grew up with carrot-red [orange] hair, I can’t help but be suspicious that my parents had an agenda with their naming process. I’m fine with that.

#WorldWatercolorGroup - Angel illustration by R.E.D. (Richard Eric Disney) - #doodlewash

#WorldWatercolorGroup - Angel illustration by R.E.D. (Richard Eric Disney) - #doodlewashI have always liked to paint and draw, emulating the style of my mother, and accomplished artist. “Always” as in as soon as I could hold a crayon. This might explain why I ended up taking a job at Hallmark Cards, Inc. as an illustrator. Thirty five years in, this “perfect” job, career, LIFE came to an abrupt end as said corporation continued downsizing, and I was “offered” the option to retire. To say that my life was turned upside-down would be an understatement.

#WorldWatercolorGroup - Angel illustration by R.E.D. (Richard Eric Disney) - #doodlewashI did not settle easily into a “retired” lifestyle…hence the decision to draw/paint an angel every day for thirty days—which I did, and then some. The intent was for healing of the loss of job, not only with the artwork, but also the personal reflections in accompanying words. The idea of angels has always been appealing to me in their inherent mystery and spirituality. For me, this was truly a way to deal with the pain and begin the process of healing.

Fast forward three years, and I’m still at it…still painting, drawing and healing. My process is relatively simple—whatever is taking up brain space on any given day is fodder for a new angel—from the extremely personal to the more general and universally specific.

Most of the times these musings are serious and semi-autobiographical, but sometimes more lighthearted material takes over.

#WorldWatercolorGroup - Angel illustration by R.E.D. (Richard Eric Disney) - #doodlewash

I always start with casual graphite sketches on tracing paper, and once I am satisfied with the direction, I will transfer the sketch to paper, board, whatever seems to suit the subject…or not. I then begin bringing the drawing to life with my beloved pens of choice—PrismaColor Premier, Copic Multi-liner and/or Pigma Multi-liner.

Then comes the water. And the color…a truly elusive and at times frustrating medium that truly has a mind of it’s own. If I’m feeling particularly brave, I will start with the painting, let it take me where it will and follow with the detail of pen lines and marks.

I use Winsor & Newton paints—pretty basic, but it’s what I know. Sometimes I will use Photoshop to combine parts and pieces, but that usually takes it to a different place for me—not as real and personal.

I truly see these angels as being more autobiographical than not, helping me to tell my story with the hope that it will resonate with others as well. Inspiration is my own heart and soul as well as practicing mindfulness and paying attention. Please feel free to drop by my Facebook Page or Instagram. Thanks so much for the drive-by.

Peace, R.E.D.

Posted by:Charlie O'Shields (doodlewash)

Creator of Doodlewash® and founder of World Watercolor Month™ (July) and World Watercolor Group™. Sharing daily watercolor illustrations and stories while proudly featuring talented artists from all over the world!

29 replies on “GUEST DOODLEWASH: Water… and Color – The Perfect Storm

  1. Just back from my exhausting Xmas shopping and I hear my mobile phone making that little ping noise to let me know there is something for me to read…your beautiful story.The Xmas angels are working hard to remind us what this feastive season is about….sharing, love . Thanks for your beautiful message of hope and healing through your personal story and your amazing angels. Agnès (ww.hobbysketcher.com)

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Oh Ms. Agnes–your words have truly touched me–It is beyond wonderful to know that there are people “out there” who can resonate with one’s personal journey. We’ve never met in person, but I “feel” a kindred spirit–Have a wonder-filled Christmas! [now that the shopping is done 🙂 ]

      Liked by 2 people

  2. R.E.D., you’ve taken a terrible situation and turned it into something wonderful, magical, and gracious. To see the beauty and possibility of every situation, to see the angels all around, that’s a wonderful quality. I hope your desire to see angels in all things has gifted you in return. Paying attention to everything is a great way to live. Happiest of the New Year to you.

    Liked by 1 person

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