For our Doodlewash prompt of “Fox,” combined with the Inktober prompt of “Snow,” we have a sleepy little fox in the woods. There used to be a little red fox that lived in the cemetery next to our home and we could watch him from our window. Seeing that familiar pop of bright rusty orange in the white snow, was always a wonderful sight. Sadly, the little fox disappeared and we haven’t seen one in a couple of years now. I read once that red foxes were “edge species” who like to be on the boundary of two different habitats, like where woodlands meet grasslands or open areas. As it turns out, much of the way we humans like to develop our parks and cities creates a rather perfect habitat for these foxes. And I love the idea of being an “edge species” as it’s like having the best of both worlds. Indeed, I think I’m similar in that I love being out in the open at times, but really enjoy being able to retreat back into my den whenever I want. Yet, as the weather gets chillier this time of year, you’ll find me seeking a much warmer spot by the fireplace, likely with a mug of hot chocolate.
I love the cozy feel of the cooler weather, and in truth, I might be part fox as the cold doesn’t really bother me that much. I actually far prefer it to the hot, humid days of summer. Both Philippe and our dog Phineas, on the other hand, get cold quite easily. Today, a huge cold front moved in dropping the temperature by 20 degrees overnight. My guys were not happy about that, but I totally adored it! Phineas came back from his walk sniffing disapproval and Philippe was hugging himself like he’d just crossed the Arctic tundra.
The heat had kicked on in our house and I made a point to check it to make sure it was at a reasonable temperature. The thermostat in our house has become a bit of a game. Philippe will raise the temperature on the sly, and then I’ll slyly lower it once more. If I’m able to outfox him during this time of year, he’ll often give in and just wander through the house wearing a fleece blanket like he’s coming down with a cold. Phineas just disappears under various blankets throughout the house and we have no idea where he is most of the time.
As much as I love the cold, I doubt I could sleep on the snow as contently as the little creature I sketched today. But, it’s at least nice to know we do share things in common. I’ve felt like I’ve been staying in the woods much of the time when it came to my art. I wasn’t quite bold enough to venture out into the grasslands. They say that “living on the edge” means one has an adventurous sort of life. But, in truth, the real adventure comes when you travel past the edge and dare to move into something totally new. Nothing dangerous, of course, simply the exciting chance to free oneself from that silly burdens of fear and habit. That’s something I’m striving to do in these most recent sketches. Trying things that feel a lot less comfortable, without that safe feeling of knowing I’ll actually be able to do it successfully. But, my real goal isn’t even the art, it’s simply conquering that fear of trying. And then, seeing where that takes me next. Best of all, each sketch makes me a touch more confident, so my art can grow even bolder and more discernible, like a fox in the snow.
About the Doodlewash
Da Vinci Paint Co.: Aureolin, Vermilion, Benzimida Orange,, and Ultramarine (Green Shade). Lamy Al-Star Safari Fountain Pen (Broad Nib) with black ink in an A5 Hahnemühle Watercolour Book. Want to purchase a print of this doodlewash? Send me a note with a link to this post, and I’ll add it to my shop!