A Warm Glow

Puppy Looking At Candle Watercolor Illustration

For our prompt of “Candle” today, I ended up with a puppy mesmerized by a glass votive candle. I have to admit to finding myself staring into the glow of a flickering candle and sort of getting lost in the moment. As we head into autumn here, my favorite season, the days will continue to get shorter, so candlelight is something I always look forward to seeing again. It’s certainly possible to light a candle in the summer months, but by the time it actually gets dark Philippe and I are already heading to bed. While there will come a time in winter when I’m craving the sun again, this time of year always feels so incredible. It’s a time to cuddle up with the people and pets we adore and enjoy a moment of quiet contemplation. While the world outside spins with what can sometimes seem like chaos and confusion, it’s rejuvenating to simply enjoy a bit of glowing calm and peace. And a good reminder that no matter what happens in life, there’s always hope to be found sparkling at the edges.

I’ve been doing a lot of quiet contemplation lately. I had reached a crossroads on my creative journey and wanted to step back and consider exactly where I wanted to go next. The list that spins in my mind is exhaustive and long, and I don’t think a single lifetime would be enough to tackle everything I’m imagining. But, what I’ve realized is that one thing has never changed. I’ve always simply followed my heart and I’ve shown up as my authentic self, even when I’m told that’s not how one is meant to do things. Indeed, our social media world has a ton of rules and new ones are added every single day. And, if site views and likes are the goal, then there are actually strict rules to make that happen. But, I don’t enjoy any of that at all, and I’ve found that what I adore most is just connecting with people who don’t mind my often unusual approach to things. People who manage to stumble across me in spite of the way I’m doing things and not because of it. If you’re reading this now, then I’m sending you a huge hug and smile in return.

Next week, I’ve been asked to speak to an illustration class at the Kansas City Art Institute. It’s truly quite an honor considering the fact that I’ve only been sketching stuff for a few years now. I feel like I’m just graduating myself and have so much yet to learn and discover as I move forward down my next creative and professional path with my art, concepts, and ideas. Yet, I’ve been a creative professional my entire life, and so I surely must have learned a thing or two along the way. I’ve been asked to share a glimpse of my entire professional journey. It’s a bit like flashing one’s life before someone else’s eyes, and as I prepare the presentation, I’m learning more about myself. Each turning point in my life wasn’t as random as I thought, but was always a heartfelt choice. I’m proud of the choices that I made, and I wouldn’t have it any other way. So, as I head into a season filled with flickering candles, I’m excited for what the future brings next, and my heart, as always, is filled with a warm glow.

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Da Vinci Paint Co.:  Hansa Yellow Medium, Quinacridone Red, Yellow Ochre, Opus (Vivid Pink), Leaf Green, Terra Cotta, Cobalt Turquoise, Phthalo Blue, and Indigo. Lamy Al-Star Safari Fountain Pen 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!
Puppy Looking At Candle Watercolor Illustration Sketchbook Detail
Recommended3 recommendationsPublished in By Charlie
14 Comments
  1. writerleenda 1 month ago

    Charlie you are always wonderful and great.

  2. Mary Roff 1 month ago

    Adorable, Charlie! Wish we were seeing signs of Fall down here. Love our FL sunshine but miss those Autumn colors and cooler temps.

    • Author
      Charlie O'Shields 4 weeks ago

      Thanks so much, Mary! 😃💕 Yay for signs of fall! It’s finally cool in the shade here, but the full sun is still a bit too warm for my tastes…hehe… bring on autumn!

  3. Pam Taylor 1 month ago

    I can recall the times in my youth watching the flames of a campfire with my family. I loved to see the colors dance and hear the pops and sizzles of the wood. I am not one much for candles but I do love to sit near an open fire.

    • Author
      Charlie O'Shields 4 weeks ago

      Aww yes! That’s always such a wonderful feeling. I love an open fire… it’s been ages since I’ve been camping. 😃💕

  4. Laura Kate 1 month ago

    I really like the way you handled color and light in the votive candle. I also admire your use of white space. Somehow I have trouble reserving enough white spaces in my paintings.

    • Author
      Charlie O'Shields 4 weeks ago

      Thanks so much, Laura! 😃💕 Yeah, I always like to keep whitespace so I can repurpose these to illustrate other books and things later. Was hoping a candlelit look still came across even without a dark background!

  5. Priscilla DeConti 1 month ago

    Congratulations on your speaking engagement and I am sure they will love you as much as we do here. I am glad I “stumbled” into this site and community that you have gathered here. You are an inspiration and thanks for sharing your journey with us.
    Awesome painting as well!

    • Author
      Charlie O'Shields 4 weeks ago

      Aww thanks so much, Priscilla! 😃💕 I appreciate you! I’m so happy you found our community as well!

  6. Gary Middleton 4 weeks ago

    Lovely doodle, Charlie. At this time of year I like to sit in the garden as it’s getting dark. We have a few little solar lights that come on gradually. Not long after they’re alight the bat’s start appearing in the fading light.

    • Author
      Charlie O'Shields 4 weeks ago

      Thanks so much, Gary! 😃💕 That sounds like a perfect way to end the day. We love seeing the bats appear as well… they’re always so interesting to watch!

  7. Mireya 3 weeks ago

    Warm indeed

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