A Window To Childhood

Day 26 - Christmas Ornament Reflection Watercolor - Doodlewash

Today’s prompt is vibrant, which could be absolutely anything at all that’s bright and striking. Yesterday, I asked for suggestions of what to paint in my full post, and Sarah suggested a Christmas window with reflections. As I was thinking about this and admiring my tree today, I realized it was completely covered in shiny and whimsical reflections. The kind that not only reflect all of the color and light around, but if you glance at it just right, it can reflect a bit of your heart. A window into a time when nothing but absolute wonder would ever do during this wonderful season. As a kid, I would see my reflection on those ornaments and it felt like I was jumping inside them. Traveling to a magical world where I’d been shrunk to the size the tiniest elf and could explore unknown lands. And every year, even as more gray hair appears on my head, I’m determined to go on that same journey. As each little light glows around me and everything nearby begins to glitter, life shines more beautiful than ever. And I’m totally ready to play and be merry!

Philippe and I have been browsing Amazon in search of things to add to our wish lists. It’s basically the adult version of a list for Santa, only more convenient than writing a letter. This act is combined with subtle suggestions like when we were in Target yesterday and I casually pointed to the lava lamps and screamed loudly, “I want one of those!! Seriously! I totally want one!” Exuberant bursts like this can sometimes have an ill effect, though, as Philippe wants nearly every gift to be a surprise. This is lovely when you’re good at gifting, like he is, but a bit disconcerting when you’re… well… me. I prefer to have a clear indication of desire for nearly all of the gifts and pepper in some surprises around that for decoration. This year, I even starting jotting things down when Philippe mentioned them, but only had to cross them off when he simply bought them for himself. That’s the other side effect of being an adult. You don’t have to ask your parents first. Well, I guess, there’s still that “certain amount” that requires spousal approval. It’s different for everyone, but it exists just the same.

Most of my wish list has remained the same since I was a kid. It’s all toys, books, and electronics. I don’t want socks or anything sensible at all, because I’m an adult and perfectly capable of buying those things for myself. And when I was a kid, I didn’t want those things I needed because my mother would have bought them for me anyway. Though, yeah, since I can’t see my face properly at all times, those nose clippers Philippe snuck into my stocking one year were rather helpful, I guess. Even so, my wish list is full of things I absolutely do not need! It’s an amazing list that feels almost magical as an adult. It’s simply a list of wants. How rare is that?! Those things that I’ve talked myself out of having for months or even years, because, of course, I don’t really need them. But if life were built out of only needs it would be a terribly dull proposition indeed. Beautifully primal, to be sure, but I’m not a squirrel. I want things that do more than keep me alive. I want the things that remind me of being that kid again so I can feel truly alive! And, I wait each year for this chance to experience that amazing opportunity to enjoy a window to childhood.

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About the Doodlewash

Da Vinci Paint Co.: Aureolin, Vermilion, Leaf Green, Cobalt Turquoise, and Indigo. Lamy Al-Star Safari Fountain Pen with sepia 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!
Day 26 - Christmas Ornament Reflection Watercolor Sketchbook - Doodlewash

 

Recommended3 recommendationsPublished in By Charlie

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! If you’d like to be a guest artist on Doodlewash.com, contact me!

18 Comments
  1. Sharon Nolfi 2 weeks ago

    Your ornament and post reminded me that, as a child, I would lie on my back with my head under the Christmas tree. I could see all the lights, tinsel, and ornaments in a magical display! It was as though I was inside the tree, separate from whatever was going on in the room. Thanks for sharing your memory and evoking mine!

    • Author
      Charlie O'Shields 2 weeks ago

      Aww, I adore that memory, Sharon! 😃💕You made me want to try that tonight! hehe… what a beautiful way to view the season!

  2. smzang 2 weeks ago

    Charlie says, “if you glance at it just right, it can reflect a bit of your heart.”

    It does! My eyes are sparkling like those of a 6 year old on Christmas morning.
    I love the way you’ve created the reflection…Super!! The reflection in the cap
    of the bulb is a joy too. It leads the mind on a joyous journey into the reflection.

    • Author
      Charlie O'Shields 2 weeks ago

      Yay! I’m so thrilled you enjoyed this, Sarah! 😃💕 Thanks so much for inspiring it! I love going on these beautiful mental trips to a place that only our hearts can describe properly!

  3. Sandra Strait 2 weeks ago

    Oh, that ornament is fantastic. You need to actually paint an actual ornament to look like that! I’m with you on gifts – it needs to be something you want but don’t need. That can be a problem though, with families so spread out. It’s hard to know what they either need or want.

    • Author
      Charlie O'Shields 2 weeks ago

      Thanks, Sandra! 😃💕 I’ve never attempted to make an actual ornament, but it sounds like fun! And yeah, my own family switched to drawing names, so you could at least do a bit of research first. hehe

  4. Lisa 2 weeks ago

    My long weekend company has come and gone. This evening we are alone again and I can get back to reading and binge watching Escape to the Country. I’ve two books to go to reach 100 for the year. Anything beyond that is gravy.

    Ornaments! When I was young, I would sneak downstairs in the middle of the night and turn on the tree lights. Then I’d lie on the floor with my feet over the heat register and cover up with a bunch of afgans, tenting them over the blowing heat. It was like being inside a hot air balloon I imagined. And then I’d stare at the glorious tree while each bauble stared back at me.

    • Author
      Charlie O'Shields 2 weeks ago

      I love that you’re going to hit 100 books, Lisa! 😃💕 Congrats! That’s an insanely awesome accomplishment! I actually have published my own book, but don’t plan to start promoting it until next week. It’s already on Amazon, but since it’s a compilation of my best posts, you may have already read it (but, hey, one more book to add to the list! hehe). And that memory of wandering down in the middle of the night is precious! I adore it! That’s the kind of magic I hope I never lose in life to be sure! ❤️

    • Susie M 2 weeks ago

      That is such a fun (and warm) image!! As a child I also loved turning the tree on at night, especially when I was by myself in a quiet house…. but never thought to create a dry sauna :-)!

  5. LoriCtoo 2 weeks ago

    What a cool sketch. I like how the images wrap around the ornament. Not an easy task. I am having troubles coming up with stuff to put on my list, that aren’t hundreds of dollars. Lol Yep, that part of getting old isn’t fun. I love to look forward to surprises Christmas morning. Now that my son is older, I don’t have the excitement of shopping for him either. I can’t remember if this the year we buy socks and underwear for my husband either…..oh boy!

    • Author
      Charlie O'Shields 2 weeks ago

      Thanks so much! 😃💕 Yeah, I’m totally struggling with my list this year. hehe… most of the little things I’ve already purchased for myself and so has Philippe! It’s going to be a race to see who can come up with the best surprise!

  6. Sharon Bonin-Pratt 2 weeks ago

    Charlie, is this an actual ornament on your tree? It’s absolutely beautiful. I imagine that it might be something you saved from when you were a kid. We don’t have a Christmas tree – I’m not Christian, it isn’t part of my tradition – but I love the whole holiday season. I enjoy watching everyone celebrate whatever their tradition encompasses. And I enjoy walking around stores looking at ornaments as they get more whimsical and luxurious every year. The glass globes with a tiny scene enclosed really capture my affection for all things miniature, a leftover craving from my childhood. Since it’s only a few days past Thanksgiving and it’s a long way to Christmas morning, I can see your wish list getting longer and longer. Bet you didn’t include nose clippers. My list is always the same, no matter the season – time to be with family and friends.

    • Author
      Charlie O'Shields 2 weeks ago

      This is actually from a reference and then a bit reinterpreted. Though I’d love to have an ornament that actually looked like this! 😃💕 And I agree… this time of year just sparkles. No matter what you celebrate, it’s hard to not join in the celebration of friends, love and family! And yet, yeah, my Christmas list still manages to grow as well! 😊hehe

  7. Susie M 2 weeks ago

    I also love the ornament… and think you probably could paint that scene on a clear glass ornament with glass paint. I’ve really appreciated the focus of all your sketches– they’re not big paintings, but they convey so much emotion and whimsy. What would you say helped you improve the most when it comes to sketching? Or sketching + watercolor?

    • Author
      Charlie O'Shields 2 weeks ago

      Thanks so much, Susie! 😃💕 Thrilled you enjoyed this! I’m more of a sketcher at heart… I love drawing, yet when I added watercolor, a whole new way of seeing the world opened up for me. So it’s definitely the combo that I think holds the most magic. The doodlewash! 😉

  8. henatayeb 1 week ago

    Such a lovely illustration.
    The list of things we do not need is precisely what makes it a wish list.. thankfully we have been blessed to be able to buy the things we truly need..

    http://www.henatayeb.blogspot.com

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