A Bit Of Pride

Scarlet Macaw Looking At Reflection In Mirror Watercolor Illustration

For Day 23 of World Watercolor Month and our optional prompt of “Pride,” I sketched a scarlet macaw admiring itself in the mirror. I’m not sure whether these colorful birds know just how beautiful they are, but if they did, they’d certainly know they deserve to be proud. Indeed, as unique and awesome humans, I think that we all deserve to be proud of our differences. It would be a terribly boring world if we were all exactly the same. I’m not sure if I truly experience personal pride. I do enjoy achieving something that I set out to accomplish, but I’m far more likely to have true pride when it comes to others. For example, I love watching my nieces and nephews grow up and learn how to navigate in this crazy world. That’s the sort of thing that typically fills me with pride. Or, watching other artists in our community create something amazing. I had absolutely nothing to do with it personally, other than perhaps providing a safe place to experiment, but it still always fills me with pride anyway.

I’m not particularly proud of the way I woofed down pizza last night, however, and so today I’m feeling a bit lethargic as a result. It was still exceptionally delicious and so part of me thinks it was still worth it. That’s the Inner Child part, of course, who also has the added benefit of not suffering from adult indigestion. But, as the day wore on, I’m now feeling just grand, and so I’m entirely sure I’ll be back to gobbling things that I shouldn’t down again this evening. I wanted to make some homemade ice cream, but I have absolutely zero free time these days, so I just picked up some little cups of vanilla ice cream for later. I like the idea of little cups, so I can ration things properly and save me from my own worst cravings and indulgences. I’m not particularly proud of those either.

But, who we are and what we enjoy are part of a lovely tapestry that make us both human and wonderfully unique. I have a lot of little quirks that others don’t possess and I enjoy things that Philippe doesn’t want to bother with at all. Our pup Elliott thinks that it would be just grand to play ball for the entire evening. He’s alone in this thought, but that doesn’t stop him from trying. And, if he even manages to get us to play for a little while then he definitely seems proud of his accomplishment. Each time I make something new for these posts, I tend to be in a race to create said post and I often don’t really pay that much attention to the final illustration. I just sort of scan and race to the finish line. But, after the race is over and I later go back and look at what I actually created during the week, it is a nice feeling. I think that whenever we manage to create something from scratch, it’s worthy of our attention, and indeed, our admiration. And perhaps, it’s equally worthy of subverting our modesty and humbleness just long enough to experience a bit of pride.

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Scarlet Macaw Looking At Reflection In Mirror Watercolor Illustration Sketchbook Detail

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15 Comments
  1. Mary Roff 2 months ago

    This Macaw is a beauty!!!! And, thank heaven we are all different!!!

  2. scrittoralinda 2 months ago

    Charlie you create a great place here. Be proud. And only one little container of ice cream. I broke code and had pizza today too although that is my Wednesday lunch. I didn’t feel like cooking.

    • Author
      Charlie O'Shields 2 months ago

      Thanks so much, Linda! 😃💕 Hehe… pizza is the perfect thing when you don’t feeling like cooking!

  3. Sandra Strait 2 months ago

    I think you’re wise not to look at what you’ve just painted. So often, our finished work doesn’t match the vision we have in our head. We judge our work harshly because of that. If we wait a while, we’ve forgotten the vision and can enjoy the work for what it is – which is usually fabulous!

    • Author
      Charlie O'Shields 2 months ago

      Yeah, I’m sure I’d over-analyze things if I bothered to look closely after I finish. Thankfully… I never have time! lol So, I can just check back later and see what the heck happened. It’s more fun that way too! 😃💕

  4. Toffolo 2 months ago

    So cute!

  5. Marisela Delgado 2 months ago

    Such a beautiful macaw. I love those birds! I know there are several animals that walk this earth that are shockingly gorgeous and it makes you wonder if they know they’re, excuse my language, bad ass. Peacocks, Cardinals, lions, etc. Thank goodness they don’t struggle with vanity like humans do.
    After the JDepp trial, my mother and I have discussed Hollywood and human behavior. No criticism of that gorgeous man, but we discussed how the Hollywood beautiful people live in a separate world. It’s cut throat and even regular, normal people, who are beautiful, may still feel or made to feel less than and small because of them. In reality, there is no perfection. I guess I have thought a lot about it because of what I have been through with my body and health. My weight (I was immobile), the cut and scar on my leg from the injury that, in fact, put my life at risk, my age (I have lost 9 YEARS of my life), and my looks/my beauty because, again, I have lost 9 years of my life. Not to mention, where I still am in my life and where I am not. I feel dumpy and broken and stuck sometimes. Nope. Not looking for sympathy. We’re just talking. It’s a very real thing for me to have watched life and years slip by plus watch a world obsessed with perfection and beauty and youth.

    I know who I am and what I am worth. It may not be reflected right now on the outside, but I know how spectacular I am. My personality, my sense of humor, my heart. But I still know that the world judges me from the outside. I think I get down because I’m ready for the outside of me to match the inside of me: vibrant, alive, joyful, happy, and thriving. Anyway, just talking. If people don’t see me, who cares? They lose and have lost out on meeting many others like me. 💜 Love you much, my friend.

    • Author
      Charlie O'Shields 2 months ago

      Hola, mi amiga! 😃💕 That’s so true! And if people see you for who you really are, then they are exactly the people to have in your life. Life is too short to bother with the emotionally blind. And your heart alone makes you strikingly beautiful. Much love and big hugs to you!

      • Marisela Delgado 2 months ago

        You’re sweet, Charlie. Te quiero mucho. You are always so patient and kind with me when my feelings leak out of my heart. 💜I love you, my friend.

  6. Karen Sliwinski 2 months ago

    You have such wonderful ideas and your animal characters are priceless!

  7. Nellie Nellie 2 months ago

    I have your lovely prints of mousies in my office/art/library space and I’m proud of you every day! I think of how hard you’ve worked to bring joy and art to others and it inspires me to work for the same things, thank you, be very proud of you!🤗

    • Author
      Charlie O'Shields 2 months ago

      Aww thank you so much!! 😃💕 I’m so happy you’ve been inspired by all my crazy ideas!

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