Fork In The Road

Fork In The Road Cat Kitten Ginger Tabby Watercolor Painting Illustration

For our prompt of “Pathway” today, I thought about those moments where a path leads to a choice. Life seems full of choices at times and it can even be a bit overwhelming. Once heading down a path, there’s a fork in the road and it’s time to choose that next direction. This happens daily in my sketching, to be sure, as each time I start to make something that sketch will always morph a bit. I could continue to follow the idea that I had in my mind or I could take the new path. Next, it’s time to color and watercolor begins to do its unruly thing and often chooses something else for me as well. So many times, I’ve started with one idea and ended up with one that is very different. While keeping an open mind, I don’t have be frustrated that something didn’t turn out like the image in my head. And with an open heart, I’ll always know that whatever happens next, I’m always choosing the best path for me.

There have been so many times like this in my daily life as well. I’ve looked back and wondered what would have happened if I had made a different decision at one of those turning points. And looking back, there were actually quite a few of these. As a kid, of course, a path in the woods that forked was just something super awesome. I didn’t mind that I didn’t quite know where it would lead me. Indeed, that was the coolest part of the adventure! It wasn’t about choosing the safest path, but instead, finding the most interesting one. When I think back to those adult decisions I’ve made in my life that changed my path, this explains much about them. The ones that ended up being the most fun were never the ones that were the tried and true path. I diverted and in doing so, found something even more fun to DO next!

Today, in my art journey, I still keep following the fun and letting things take me on whatever path looks the most interesting. Indeed, this is all a hobby for me, so it’s easy to diverge whenever I like. If you’ve followed along with me on this trail, you’ll know just what I mean. But, each time I move in a new direction, it’s not super strange and mysterious. It’s just the next logical step from a totally illogical mind. It’s that little impulse that my child inside gave me to run and see what’s just over that next hill over there. And letting him guide me at every turn has made this little journey of art a total blast! What appears each day can sometimes be a bit surprising. Not just to those who are reading these posts, but to myself as well. I think I never want to get so grown up that I ever lose the ability to utterly surprise myself. And, I know that if my heart stays true to what I love most that I’ll never feel lost, but always on the perfect path whenever I take that next fork in the road.

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Fork In The Road Cat Kitten Ginger Tabby Watercolor Painting Illustration Sketchbook Detail

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  1. Mary Roff 2 years ago

    Sweet cat, Charlie! So many roads over a lifetime. Like to think that I chose the best road for any particular moment.

    • Author
      Charlie O'Shields 2 years ago

      Thanks so much, Mary! 😃💕 Indeed! I think looking back we’ll find we always chose best!

  2. Lisa 2 years ago

    I sold a print of one of my watercolors today. More paint is in my future. The only fork in that road is paint or paper. Since I used the money I made selling some of my July pear paintings to buy paper, we’re back to paint. I have too many brushes to count these days. The person who first said that a different brush will not make you a better painted knew what she was talking about!😂😂

    • Author
      Charlie O'Shields 2 years ago

      That’s so awesome you’re selling paintings! Yay! 😃💕 I’m giving you a virtual high five now, but you can’t see it so it just looks perfectly ridiculous. So true on art supplies… they’re just enablers… we are totally in charge of the painter we become. And it sounds like you’re rocking it! YAY!

  3. Karen Fortier 2 years ago

    I love the expression on your kitty Charlie! Those forks make for interesting choices. I tend to not look back much as I love where I am now and have learned much from the bumpy paths that were painful at the time.

    • Author
      Charlie O'Shields 2 years ago

      Thanks so much, Karen! 😃💕 Yeah, I look back all of the time, but have to admit I jump the middle. hehe… I think we’re defined by childhood and our mature stage teaches us to adore the us we became! Because, yeah… totally awesome here! 😉

  4. Sandra Strait 2 years ago

    One of the things I really hated, working for a large corporation, was that they always insisted you come up with a goal plan for your review. My plan was always to learn as much as I could about all aspects of the business, and then take any opportunities that came up. That was never enough for them – they wanted specifics. I’m pretty good at spinning a line, so I’d make something up. It was such a terrific waste of time.

    • Author
      Charlie O'Shields 2 years ago

      Indeed! 😃💕 I only worked for a large corporation once in my life, but have since learned that the smaller ones are not always immune to such things either. Yeah, creative types have always sort of endured the rest of the world demanding those “specifics.” They can’t see what we see. And sometimes, they still can’t “see” in general, even if we are given the chance to show them. We’re left feeling like the odd creature out…. and yet… for just a moment it feels totally satisfying. Why be normal like that anyway? hehe

  5. Marisela Delgado 2 years ago

    Cute kitty, Charlie! 💜 You know, I have been thinking about that a lot these past couple of days: what could ‘ve been had I done this or that. Of course, I worry that I wouldn’t have turned out to be who I am today. Would I have found my way to the Lord? Would I have found rubber stamping? Who would’ve been in my life? Would I be married and maybe a grandmother by now? Where would I be living? It nice to daydream about a totally different life. Sadly, you have to come back to reality and that hurts. Especially if your reality is, shall we say, crappy. Let me just say that I have been daydreaming about another life since I was a child. I am happy with WHO I am. Even as a little girl I knew that I am a special person with a great heart and a killer personality. I just wish the people around me had gone a different road. That’s the crappy part. 💜 Again, hopeful for a better future with no crappy people. Hopefully soon, Charlie. Hopefully soon.
    Your kitty 🐱 reminds me of a kitty that I had as a teen. I named him “mocos”, which means boogers because he always had boogers. 💜

    • Nellie Nellie 2 years ago

      OMGOSH Marisela! I never thought I’d meet another person (outside of Greece) say, “Mocos”😄😁😆 my Mom grew up up with a Greek best friend! What a fun joy to experience today!😆

      • Marisela Delgado 2 years ago

        Hola, Nellie! Thanks for your reply. 😀 What does “mocos” mean in Greek? “Mocos” in Spanish means boogers. 💜 So glad that my comment made you laugh and smile! Have a great weekend! your friend in San Antonio, Texas….💜

    • Author
      Charlie O'Shields 2 years ago

      Thanks so much, Marisela! 😃💕 hehe… Love that name for a kitty! And YES! That right there is the secret of life. Little Marisela always told your story… it’s simply your chance to explore it and live it. Things might get crazy, but that little girl with a killer personality will always let you know exactly what your heart wants to do next.

      • Marisela Delgado 2 years ago

        Aww, Charlie. You’re always so sweet. Your words brought tears to my eyes. I didn’t grow up hearing any positive affirmations. I think the Lord helped that little girl look through the lies to who I really am. Your words touched my heart. 💜 Thank you!

  6. Gary Middleton 2 years ago

    Great doodle, Charlie.

  7. LoriCtoo 2 years ago

    He looks just like the kitty that has been unwantingly visiting our patio in the wee hours. Unfortunately he follows the same path every night. The expressions you do on your animals are so fun. They come to life!

    • Author
      Charlie O'Shields 2 years ago

      Thanks so much, Lori! 😃💕 What an awesome compliment! hehe… your nightly visitor sounds intriguing!

  8. Mugdha 2 years ago

    Hello Charlie,

    Lovely Doodlewash as usual! I love the cat’s eyes. And thank you for writing the post the way you have. I’m not a person who lives tense – in fact I love to laugh at any given opportunity – but since the pst couple of days I’ve been feeling unusually heavy and anxious. I know the feeling will pass in a couple of days but till it’s there, it really bogs me down. So reading your post made me feel a bit better. Thanks so much for that. I hope I haven’t made you feel all low.


    • Author
      Charlie O'Shields 2 years ago

      Thanks so much, Mugdha! 😃💕 Aww I’m so happy to know I made you feel better! There’s a secret here that some never talk about. When you’re super creative like you and I, things stop making sense at some point. It’s like drowning in a reality that still feels perfectly unreal. When you feel that, it’s actually a badge of honor and something to be proud to feel. You’re exceptional! What on earth is better than that? And you’ll DO amazing things!!

  9. Priscilla DeConti 2 years ago

    Wonderful painting to go along with wonderful thoughts!!
    I agree that whatever path I take today its the one I am supposed to be on…😊

    • Author
      Charlie O'Shields 2 years ago

      Thanks so much, Priscilla! 😃💕 Yes! I agree! There’s always a reason for the path we’re on… it’s just a matter of determining what that is. Then we can choose the next awesome fork in the road!

  10. writerleenda 2 years ago

    Right on Charlie! Perfect now all you have to do is turn up the music full blast and dance backwards around the living room. Why not. I have!

    • Author
      Charlie O'Shields 2 years ago

      Thanks so much! 😃💕 LOL …. yeah, as fun as that sounds, I think I lack the coordination and it could be dangerous! hehe

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