Everyday Natural Wonders

Day 1 - Bee Flower Watercolor - Doodlewash

We’ve started a brand new month, and as always, that marks the start of a new Doodlewash art challenge! This month, we’re exploring flora and fauna which is a broad theme that covers almost every living thing on the planet. Though there are often large and impossible things on our planet given the name “natural wonders,” I think just about anything nature offers is worthy of the title. I find nature incredible and wonderful and even some of the most commonplace things like honey bees are still fascinating to me. Like how a bee will return to the hive and then perform a ‘waggle dance’ or shake their booty to alert the others as to the direction of a food source. Yep, bees are apparently masters of interpretative dance. There are often quirky little aspects of nature that seem nearly illogical until the exquisite logic reveals itself. That, to me, makes it so captivating and interesting. And it’s rather comforting since I often do things in an illogical way and yet I hope, in the end, it will all somehow make sense. It does much of the time. And though it’s still winter and cold here, I’m excited to sketch things that I know will be returning soon or wonderful animals who always produce warm smiles. I DO hope you’ll join me!

I’m rather excited for the coming weekend because it’s the first full weekend that Philippe and I are spending at home. After spending a lovely two full weeks in Paris, and then going right back to work it will be a nice return to normal. Our dog Phineas is thrilled to be back into a normal routine and is currently sitting at my feet as I type this. He’s not a fan of the cold temperatures at all. A couple of days ago, Philippe took him out and he suddenly started whining as he feet began to hurt. He was airlifted to safety via Philippe’s arms and was carried back home. Phineas is a basenji, a breed that originated in Africa, and so somewhere in his genes he’s quite aware that this weather is perfectly ridiculous and needs to cease immediately. Though it will be a few more weeks before that happens, depending on what the groundhog tells us tomorrow, it will thankfully be above freezing this weekend. With no bees or flowers around, I had to use references, of course, but it was a joy to usher in an early spring via my sketchbook. That’s what I adore about sketching stuff. I can make it any season I like at any moment.

And just in case you missed it, the latest episode of my Sketching Stuff Podcast launched this week titled A Naturally Fun World that captures some of my stories inspired by nature. Take a listen when you can and leave me a comment to let me know your thoughts! As you’ve likely noticed if you follow my posts, I’ll move in a whiplash motion from manmade objects to the things that only nature could create. The little boy inside just adores all sorts of things in this crazy world. And though Little Charlie had lots of toys and books as a child, I’ll never forget the wonder I felt just walking around outdoors. I was very small at the time to be sure, but I remember walking through the fields on my grandmother’s farm and feeling like I was lost in the infinite. Suddenly, I was no larger than a grasshopper, and instead of feeling small, I felt like anything was possible. In those moments of quiet reflection in an endless landscape of grass and trees, I imagined all sorts of possibilities my life would take next. Some of those dreams have come true, and some are still patiently waiting to happen. What I know to be true is that sometimes life just has to take its course. There’s no need to rush or worry, when we take that precious moment to simply stop and enjoy those everyday natural wonders.

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About the Doodlewash

Da Vinci Paint Co.: Aureolin, Leaf Green, Quinacridone Red, Cobalt Turquoise, Terra Cotta, and Cobalt Blue. 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!
Day 1 - Bee Flower Watercolor - Sketchbook Detail - Doodlewash
Recommended5 recommendationsPublished in By Charlie
15 Comments
  1. Laura Hale 10 months ago

    Welcome back and awesome doodlewash.

    • Author
      Charlie O'Shields 10 months ago

      Thanks so much, Laura! 😃💕Great to be home again! And thrilled you enjoyed this doodlewash!

  2. Sandra Strait 10 months ago

    You paint the best bees, and despite the fact you paint them seldom, the most fabulous flowers! I’m sure Phineas doesn’t like this weather at all. Basenjis don’t like to get their feet wet so even rain is evil as far they’re concerned.

    • Author
      Charlie O'Shields 10 months ago

      You’re so sweet! Thank you, Sandra! 😃💕 I need to bottle up those compliments so I attempt more flowers. hehe And yes, rain, snow… it’s all evil for basenjis! lol

  3. Sharon Nolfi 10 months ago

    I love the way you used color on the bee. All of nature is truly amazing. I’m never bored when I’m outside – even in the city there are flowers, trees, birds, and, of course, insects.

    • Author
      Charlie O'Shields 10 months ago

      Thanks, Sharon! 😃💕 I agree! It’s wonderful to be outdoors wherever you are. So many wonderful things to experience!

  4. B. 10 months ago

    I love the way you write.. it just pours out naturally… thumbs up!

    • Author
      Charlie O'Shields 10 months ago

      That’s such a wonderful compliment! Thanks so much! 😃💕

      • B. 10 months ago

        My pleasure!

  5. LoriCtoo 10 months ago

    I love this sketch, as I said on instagram. 😉 So many details, so pretty. You are like a honeybee, buzzing around all the time! 😉

    • Author
      Charlie O'Shields 10 months ago

      Thanks so much! 😃💕 hehe… I AM like a honeybee… constantly buzzing… though I’m not sure if I have a tail wagging dance like they do. I maybe don’t go quite that far…at least much of the time 😊lol

  6. smzang 10 months ago

    Everything about your article is spellbinding. Excellent writing.
    and the painting supersedes anything the groundhog might say.
    Your painting brings spring into this room. What a mood lifter!

    • Author
      Charlie O'Shields 10 months ago

      Thanks so much, Sarah! 😃💕 Actually, the groundhog said that there will be an early spring. But I’m not convinced yet! hehe

  7. Lisa 10 months ago

    Every time I visited my parents where I grew up, I had to take a walk around the property. What was new, what was growing, what was dying. It was my thing. Nature girl from way back!

    This should make you happy. From Wikipedia:

    Imbolc or Imbolg (/ɪˈmɒlɡ/ i-MOLG), also called (Saint) Brigid’s Day (Irish: Lá Fhéile Bríde, Scottish Gaelic: Là Fhèill Brìghde, Manx: Laa’l Breeshey), is a Gaelic traditional festival marking the beginning of spring. It is held on 1 February, or about halfway between the winter solstice and the spring equinox.[1][2] Historically, it was widely observed throughout Ireland, Scotland and the Isle of Man. It is one of the four Gaelic seasonal festivals—along with Beltane, Lughnasadh and Samhain[3]—and corresponds to the Welsh Gŵyl Fair y Canhwyllau. For Christians, especially in Ireland, it is the feast day of Saint Brigid.

    • Author
      Charlie O'Shields 10 months ago

      Thanks, Lisa! 😃💕Love a nature girl! hehe And yay the Wikipedia entry… that’s awesome! Perfect for this Irish boy!

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