With our prompt of “Gold Opportunity” today, it got me thinking about the phrase’s definition, which is a chance to get something valuable or be really successful. I feel this way each time I sit down with my sketchbook every day. Today, it was a perfect opportunity to sketch a Golden Retriever, simply because I think they’re rather lovely dogs. This one has that wistful look I get most days when I’m dreaming that next big dream or thinking about a particular opportunity. But what strikes me most is that first bit of the definition about getting “something valuable.” This could really mean anything at all as it’s different for each and every person. What we personally consider to have value isn’t always the same as others. For me, I feel like making something new each day is always the act of creating value. Even if, it doesn’t feel “really successful.” Some days, I think to myself, well, I tried at least! And others, like today, I feel like I managed to produce a rather convincing facsimile of whatever it was I attempted to recreate in my very short time to sketch and color. But, each and every day, it’s the very act of creating something that creates real value. That’s why I’m always trying to get people to sketch stuff with me.
By the way, Episode #24 of my Sketching Stuff Podcast is available now, so I DO hope you’ll have a listen and leave me your comments. My little podcast that could is nearing its one year anniversary. It launched at the start of last year’s World Watercolor Month. To be honest, I wasn’t sure at first how long the podcast would continue, as I didn’t know when I started it if anyone would be at all interested in listening to me ramble on in an audio format. And though I thought people might be somewhat intrigued to hear what I sounded like at first, I didn’t think they’d stay interested after that. But, your comments and support have been so kind and encouraging, so I keep showing up to produce more episodes. And will continue to DO so as long as I know folks out there are still listening! (reviews and/or ratings on iTunes are indeed helpful and appreciated as well!). What I’ve discovered on this wonderful and often crazy art journey is that showing up is everything. If you have an urge to create something, then don’t let anything stop you from showing up to DO just that! The value is always in the DOing.
So, as I move forward on my journey, I’m excited to see what happens next! I’m not sure I could have predicted much of what’s happened along the way when I first picked up that pen and paintbrush back in July 2015. And I’m thoroughly thrilled to see what each of YOU create next as well! Our community of artists, art lovers, hobbyists, and generally awesome people has been the most exciting part of this experience for me. Sketching and painting together has made every single moment feel extremely valuable. Each day we get the chance to learn not only from ourselves, but from hundreds and even thousands of other artists out there as well. Okay, not all at once, but over the course of our journey, we get the amazing opportunity to experience art through the eyes of so many other people. Yes, many that seem way more talented than we are, or at least felt that day, but that shining star you enjoy isn’t meant to blind you, but merely there to help you unlock your own potential. I’ve been humbled daily on this journey as I know my own art isn’t as exceptional as many of the artists I feature here. But it’s always exceptionally me, and so I adore what I create and I think you should adore whatever you create as well. Embracing every line, splash of color, and each little flaw you see that appears. It’s an amazing thing when we show up to do nothing more than be ourselves. And, with each step we take, it’s the beauty of never once forgetting that each day is a golden opportunity.
About the Doodlewash
Da Vinci Paint Co.: Yellow Ochre, Terra Cotta, and Cobalt Blue. 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!
Creator of Doodlewash®, founder of World Watercolor Month (July), World Watercolor Group™, and host of the Sketching Stuff Podcast. 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!