The Wisdom Of Alpacas

Alpaca Watercolor Portrait - Day 13 - #doodlewashAugust2018 Doodlewash

There’s just something adorable and sweet about alpacas. Although alpacas may or may not seem exotic depending on where you’re located, but I only get to see them on farms and zoos so they’re quite exotic to me. They have an adorable face and I’m told they are quite curious and sweet animals. You won’t find any alpacas in the wild as this breed has been domesticated for over 6,000 years now. They’re shorn once a year for their prized soft and wondrous fleece, that’s naturally water-repellent, flame resistant, and available in 22 different colors of over 300 varying shades. So, alpacas are just really cool! Yeah, they do spit a bit like their camelid kin, but it’s much more rare and only when in true distress. Basically the same truly bad situations where spitting would seem entirely appropriate to any creature really. Their docile and social nature makes alpacas rather intriguing role models. They stay true to their friends and remember them even after years of being apart. So, I’ve always had a soft spot in my heart for alpacas.

What I constantly see in animals are traits that are not only sweet, but rather admirable. Sure, I don’t want to be exactly like an alpaca as they also poop in the exact same spot as a group, but I do have to admire their sense of community. Perhaps the most intriguing fact about alpacas is that they don’t ever want to be truly alone. In fact, if separated from their tribe and left in isolation, they will often grow ill and even die of loneliness. As an introvert who tends to avoid crowds, I can still appreciate that feeling of needing to be loved. Not by just anyone who happens to be around me, but by my own tribe and family. That group of people who know everything about me and love me both because of it, and in spite of it all. No wonder an alpaca would grow ill without that feeling. It’s the very force that keeps us all alive each and every day. While I do often like to be alone, I can’t imagine a world where I might ever feel lonely. Just having a husband and a dog in my life is more than enough to make life wonderful. But having friends and family is what makes life truly amazing.

As I journey through wildly different topics while sketching stuff each and every day, I’m always learning new things. Not simply about the subject matter I’ve chosen, but about myself and what makes me tick. And though I’ll continue to poop in private, thank you very much, I love being reminded by an alpaca that I should reach out to those old friends that I’ve lost touch with over the years. Following these prompts each and every day for me is much more than continuing a daily art habit. It’s a chance to stop and reflect on something I might not have stopped to contemplate. That’s why I adore painting with prompts each day. Each one inspires a new bit of thinking and new story. I never feel limited as I can happily interpret them in any way that I like. Or, like most days, simply let the idea wash over me and wait to see what appears on paper. Little bits of life that taken singular are nothing more than an exercise in sketching, but when folded together, create a patchwork of wonderful memories. Whether it’s a trip back to childhood while painting a favorite toy or simply pausing a moment to appreciate the wisdom of alpacas.

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About the Doodlewash

Da Vinci Paint Co.: Aureolin, Vermilion, 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!
Alpaca Watercolor Portrait - Day 13 - #doodlewashAugust2018 Doodlewash
Recommended6 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!

26 Comments
  1. Sandra Strait 1 month ago

    Oh, you had me with the title of this one! I love alpacas. And I have to admit that I love the internet too – I can be surrounded by friends and family when I need them … and then I can have my complete privacy whenever I want by simply closing my laptop. The best of both worlds!

    • Author
      Charlie O'Shields 1 month ago

      Thanks, Sandra! 😃💕 hehe… I totally agree! It internet works perfectly for that. You can be completely surrounded and then shut everything off in a beat. Rather brilliant actually! 😉

  2. Jodi 1 month ago

    You are such an inspiration!!!!

  3. LoriCtoo 1 month ago

    One of these months I hope to participate in “your” daily prompts. I am thinking of incorporating it into my Disney group challenges. I may even use this month’s for my next turn. 🙂

    • Author
      Charlie O'Shields 1 month ago

      Awesome! Incorporate away! I just like the prompts so I keep myself sketching each day and hope it does the same for others. They’re fun to interpret though… I would imagine there are a million possibilities or more per prompt! 😉

  4. SnehLata Maheshwari 1 month ago

    This is a beautiful 🥀 Animal.
    Excellent work done by u.
    Thanks lie

  5. June Hadaway 1 month ago

    Just too cute and those earrings are adorable on your alpaca. So much character with those eyes.

    • Author
      Charlie O'Shields 1 month ago

      Thanks, June! 😃💕 The earrings were my own addition… hehe… thought he needed a bit of color!

  6. Sharon Nolfi 1 month ago

    Handsome portrait of an admirable animal! I’ve always loved them but did not know all the facts you presented. That’s one of the benefits of reading your blog – always something new to learn.

    • Author
      Charlie O'Shields 1 month ago

      Thanks, Sharon! 😃💕 hehe… you know you can always count on me for bits of trivia you never knew you needed to know! The world just fascinates me!

  7. Lisa 1 month ago

    He sure is cute. I got into weaving a number of years ago, and one fun thing some friends and I did was go to a llama farm and learn how to shear them. I also went to an alpaca farm and fell in love with the little guys. Since hubs objects to my having chickens, you can guess what he thought about an alpaca ranch. Lol He’s no fun when it comes to exotic pets.

    • Author
      Charlie O'Shields 1 month ago

      Thanks, Lisa! 😃💕 Awww… you should totally get an alpaca! Well… apparently you have to get at least two, if not three, so a farm is the only option really.

  8. Sharon Bonin-Pratt 1 month ago

    Ah, I love your sweet alpaca, especially as he’s decorated his ears with tassels. It’s kinda interesting that you relate to alpacas for your social shyness as I find them skittish in person. Well, around people, anyway.

    • Author
      Charlie O'Shields 1 month ago

      Thanks, Sharon! 😃💕 Yeah… I think I relate because they are a bit shy and awkward around people. I can put on a good show for a bit, but get a little antsy and want to be put back in my stable soon enough. hehe

  9. cjwaterfieldart 1 month ago

    An amazing animal. I had the pleasure of hugging a llama, what an honour! A beautiful little sketch too!

    • Author
      Charlie O'Shields 1 month ago

      Thanks so much! 😃💕 Aww that’s so awesome that you got to hug a llama! Fun!

  10. Mary Roff 1 month ago

    Sweet alpaca. And your observations about painting each day are so true. Each little daily painting seems to be a connection to a memory. The journey is fun.

    • Author
      Charlie O'Shields 1 month ago

      Thanks, Mary! 😃💕 Yeah, it’s such an enjoyable journey… if you just take it in stride and enjoy the process unfolding. Pure fun!

  11. smzang 1 month ago

    I love that painting! (and of course the article)
    You give such soul to the eyes you paint and you make lovable animals
    even more loveable. This one is extra-special!

    • Author
      Charlie O'Shields 1 month ago

      Thanks, Sarah! 😃💕That’s such a sweet compliment. I always think you have to get the eyes just right, or the rest doesn’t matter. I usually make them first and so the animal is just staring at me, willing me to not mess up the rest! hehe

  12. lisas 1 month ago

    Ahhhh so cute!! I’d love to see them in the wild someday too! (And sketch them on location — how cool would that be?)

    • Author
      Charlie O'Shields 1 month ago

      Thanks, Lisa! 😃💕 Aww yes! It would be so cool to see them on location! I hear alpacas don’t like being petted, but I would totally want to pet one.

  13. Shar Kennett 1 month ago

    Adorable painting Charlie! Alpacas always make me smile and make me feel happy. Sometimes I threaten my family that I am going to move to Colorado and have a couple alpacas in my back yard.

    • Author
      Charlie O'Shields 1 month ago

      Thanks, Shar!! 😃💕Ohhhhh you should do that!! And when you do have me over so I can see them. Colorado is close to me! hehe

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