When I was kid, insects were endlessly fascinating to me, but as an adult, I prefer the flying insect that comes in the form of a butterfly most. And, I do remember chasing after butterflies as a child, thinking they were magical and wanting to see where they would go next. Like they might lead me to some special hidden place or something. That, sadly, never happened, but it did nothing to dim my view of them. Though I don’t really like the pesky flying insects that make picnic a little less relaxing, I’m still always in awe when it comes to nature. There’s so much to explore there! And thanks, by the way, to everyone who purchased my new nature-themed Sketching Stuff Activity Book! I really appreciate it and I hope you’ll enjoy the fun activities inside! I tend to sketch just about anything, but as it turns out, nature, animals and food top the list when I’m not sketching random memories from childhood. But, no matter what, sketching stuff always takes me back to when I was a kid because I don’t often look that closely at things as an adult. Stopping to study a butterfly today so I could doodle and color it, took using the eyes of a child to properly see what’s really there. The eyes of my inner child, full  of wonder and wisdom.

So, it’s definitely been a crazy week, as I launched my new book on Monday, and then a new podcast episode yesterday (check it out if you haven’t already and leave me your comments!), and then today, appeared for my first-ever video appearance in the Sketchbook Revival free online workshop. So, as you can see, I don’t just tell people to “DO” all of the time, I actually take myself up on the challenge. That said, this was a lot all at once, even from me, so thanks if you’ve managed to keep up with it all. I’m always thankful when you play along with me as I tend to get a bit overzealous at times and end up talking about several things at once. But, if you read my posts regularly, you’re probably well used to that. What I’ve realized lately in my art journey is that I’ve felt like I’ve been creeping along like a caterpillar, waiting for my big transformation. In many ways, this was due to not quite knowing what I wanted to be when I grew up. Then I remembered that I haven’t really grown up at all, so I was lost and confused at first. But, this week has reminded me of who I really am. Hi, my name is Charlie, and I’m a coloring book artist who loves to play with ink and watercolor! It’s called a doodlewash, for those of you in the know, and it’s been that way from the very beginning.

One of the most important things I’ve learned on this journey of art is that we can’t escape our own personal style. We can’t escape our own heart and yearning to make something new in a way that makes us feel fulfilled. This feeling is unique to each of us and the output is just as beautifully uncommon. I happily encourage you to take as many art classes as you possibly can,  because in them, you’ll find new ways to implement your own wonderful style. Every artist on this planet has something rare and wonderful to teach us. Just like every human being we might meet during the day, who unwittingly teaches us something new about life. This is the joy and wonder that I happily embrace to begin each new sunrise. Like you, I’m still learning and figuring it all out. I don’t have a date set when I intend to be a master because I love the journey itself too much. And, I can’t be sure if this is a good approach to art, but what I DO know is that I get a great deal of joy from thinking that one day, I might just find myself, becoming a butterfly.

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About the Doodlewash

Da Vinci Paint Co.: Nickel Azo Yellow, Quinacridone Red, Opus (Vivid Pink), Cobalt Blue, and Terra Cotta. Sharpie Pen 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 24 - Butterfly Watercolor Illustration - Doodlewash

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28 thoughts on “Becoming A Butterfly

  1. I watched a LBS Nature show this evening on butterflies! Coincidence! This past late summer I was outside checking my milkweed plants for monarch caterpillars. The plants were all dying and I hoped if I found a caterpillar I could move it to a better place. Lo and behold, I found seven. So it became a project. I got my cleaning girl to help and we moved all of them to a much better, still green clump of milkweed. Plus, she took one home and raised it to become a butterfly before sending it off on its migratory journey.

  2. I just watched your sketchbook revival video. Nice job. Calm, cool, collected, even through the storm. Your explain things well and in order so it was easy to follow along, and your flowers turned out great.

    1. Oh wow! Thanks, Lisa! 😃💕 Yeah, I was in truth a total wreck leading up to that video. I don’t know why, but appearing on camera for the first time terrified me! People seemed to like my words when written and spoken, so I wasn’t sure what it would be like when they saw me moving around live! hehe In truth, the crazy thunderstorm sort of helped ease my nerves. Obviously the weather was far more nervous than I was in the end! Glad you enjoyed it!

  3. Congrats on all your accomplishments this week! You have been busy! So many details in this little beautiful butterfuly. I am behind on watching the Sketchbook Rev videos. I better hurry up so I can watch yours!!

    1. Thanks so much, Lori! 😃💕hehe.. yeah…. I packed in a full week of “firsts” this week! lol And let me know what you think of my video when you get a chance to view it. It’s totally live and my very first so I was nervous and there was a bad thunderstorm outside. It has some exciting and unintended special effects! lol

  4. Beautiful doodlewash, Charlie O! I am so excited to more thoroughly look through my book, which arrived yesterday and I thumbed through, as well as finish watch your video on Sketchbook Revival! You are awesome, but I ran out of time and awakeness! Love it ALL!!!! (and you! <3) 🙂

    1. Thanks SO much, Jodi! 😃💕 hehe… I adore you! Big hugs! Love you back my friend! Hope you enjoy the book… it’s total Charlie, so it’s not quite like the art instruction books others have created. A bit of an experiment, but I loved how it turned out. If nothing else, it’s 100% ME! lol

        1. Thank you! 😃💕I did a sketch at work that took about 15 minutes and then spent another 50 minutes on the coloring at home. I realize that only takes me 5 minutes past my normal hour, but you watched my video so you know I don’t like watching paint dry. hehe… I use a lot fo hacks to get there quicker!

  5. I am so excited about the butterfly ( more about that in a sec…)

    Charlie says, “One of the most important things I’ve learned on this journey of art is that we can’t escape our own personal style. We can’t escape our own heart and yearning to make something new in a way that makes us feel fulfilled.”

    I love it!!!

    and I love the butterfly, not only because he as deliciously delicate wings, so real I can feel their texture but because, too, his antenna reflect excitement. The fairly quivering with zest for life or nectar or whatever makes
    them quiver. Alive and vibrant and so very lovely.

    1. Aww that’s such an awesomely sweet compliment! Thanks, Sarah! 😃💕I’m so glad you like my butterfly… yeah, I liked the way the his little antennae turned out… just a few strokes of ink, but it had a cool effect! And yes to embracing our wonderful built-in style… it’s the coolest way to create!

  6. Butterflies are so pretty and you have painted yours the same. I love! I could never quite understand why they were named butterflies. They flutterby, so to me, that should be their name. 😁😂🤣 I really enjoyed your video. You made everything sound fun and so DOable. 😊 I know everyone who watches it will love it too.

    1. Thanks so much, June! 😃💕I agree! Flutterby is a much better name! Glad you like this! And so happy you enjoyed my video. That was a big leap of faith for me. It so encouraging to know you enjoyed it! 😊

  7. I love this post! Also really enjoyed your video on Sketchbook Revival. It was very informative and interesting to see and hear your art process. It is fitting that this post and your first ever video are in the same article since the butterfly signifies leaving the safety of your cocoon where everything feels safe and familiar, to becoming a butterfly, boldly showing your colours and trusting that these new wings will fly and bring you new perspective. Congrats.

    1. Aww that’s such a lovely comment, Lin! 😃💕 So happy you enjoyed my first video! Thanks so much! I do feel a bit like a butterfly these days… just finding my wings and figuring out where I should fly next! 😊

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