Fruit Salad To Go

Day 10 - #WorldWatercolorGroup - Adult Fruit Cup Fruit Salad To Go - #doodlewash

When I was a kid, getting a little fruit cup was one of my favorite things in the world. I particularly liked the strange little cherries inside that were sort of reddish pink in color and looked more like little candies than fruit. The larger version of this was called fruit salad and it was made for gatherings by cutting up a bunch of fruit and tossing it all together into a bowl. If you purchased the mixture in a can, it was often called fruit cocktail, which is actually the name I remember most as a kid. The word cocktail in this instance isn’t the alcholic kind, but the version that applies to any little bits of food simply thrown together and served as a chilled appetizer. The canned version back then was always served in a heavy syrup and the whole concoction was a sweet mushy mess that you barely had to chew. The pears were my favorite, until you got the random one that wasn’t quite ripe and actually required chewing. That sucked. But overall, it was quite delightful.

These days, a fruit cup for adults is actually just a bunch of fruit in a cup, often packaging in a way that you can grab it on the run. We’re always on the run these days. But, it’s real fruit that you can still recognize, cut into slices or entirely whole, in the case of berries. I understand this is a far superior way to eat fruit, but I miss my little cocktail cups sometimes. The little squares of fruit were fun, although it was sometimes impossible to distinguish the difference in flavor between a grape and peach. But finding the little cherries was like finding buried treasure, made special because there were so few of them. These days, I’ve graduated to whole fruit without the syrup, but I miss the sweet days of little fruit cups. That should be a song, “the sweet days of little fruit cups.” Something with a little folk country music in the background. Another thing that you’d find in my house as I was growing up.

I’ve no idea where I’m going with all of this, other than to say that sometimes those little childhood treats are fun to remember. And, as I’ve grown into my version of adulthood, even when I now know there’s a better way it doesn’t stop me from wanting to just have what I had back then. Thinking about all the wreckless abandon I had when approaching my creative projects reminds me that the little kid I used to be was wise in his own special way. And so each day as I look both backward and forward, I have to stop and give him some credit for making me the artist I am today. Some days, I’m not sure if I’m drawing, sketching, painting, or illustrating, as these terms often seem hard to precisely define. It’s a bit more like I’m simply grabbing for supplies, painting or drawing and yet always splashing around with a smile, making my own little fruit salad to go.

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About the Doodlewash

Sennelier L’Aquarelle: Indian Yellow, Red Orange, Sennelier Red, Phthalocyanine Blue, Dioxazine Purple, Phthalo. Green Pale, and Payne’s Grey. Lamy Safari Al-Star Fountain Pen – Extra Fine, with Platinum Carbon black ink in an A6 Hahnemühle Watercolor Book.
 Day 10 - #WorldWatercolorGroup - Adult Fruit Cup Fruit Salad To Go - #doodlewash
Profile photo of Charlie O'Shields
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!
Published in By Charlie
26 Comments
  1. jopamhworo 3 months ago

    That’s beautiful Charlie.

  2. Jodi 3 months ago

    amazing painting!

  3. Jacob 3 months ago

    Oh, how I remember those childhood fruit salads, and cherry-picking (appropriately enough!) the favourites. Fun fun! This cup with all those vibrant and juicy colours so tightly packed in – one wonders where to go first. Awesome. Thanks heavens for Little Charlie, eh! 😉

    • Author

      Thanks so much, Jacob! 😃💕 hehe… glad you remember that experience too! It was soooo fun! I miss those days. You’ll be happy to know that I’ll be throwing all the rules out on my birthday this Thursday and just enjoying what I used to love most! 😉

  4. Carol 3 months ago

    Oh, I remember how the grapes had no skin and were all wrinkly, yet out of our family of 5 kids we’d feel so special to get one in our bowl, but even more special to get a piece of cherry 🙂 Thanks for the memories, Charlie, but nowadays I’d much rather have the fruit cup that you painted 🍓

    • Author

      awww thanks, Carol! 😃💕 Yeah… it was such a treasure hunt wasn’t it? Those grapes were so odd… lol… but it all came together to make something so special!

  5. matraskarate 3 months ago

    Beautiful painting…

  6. jmnowak 3 months ago

    Hey, are you sure you’re not a transmigrated Australian?! Our SPC Ardmona fruit canners here in Victoria still have the fruit cocktail available and is just as you described. It was and still is my fave. Maybe they exported to the U.S.? When I used to cook and make my fabulous pavlova, I used the fruit cocktail, minus most of the juice and any mushy fruit, as the base for the fresh chunky fruit salad I made that went on top of the scrumptious sweet sherry-based whipped cream, that went into the pav casing first. Yummy. Never anything left! 😋 Maybe you could doodle us a pav charlie?

    • Author

      hehe… thanks, Janina! 😃💕 I’ve never been to Australia, but I’m thinking now I would totally fit in! lol I’m sorry though… I got totally lost in lust after hearing “sherry-based whipped cream”!! YUM!!

      • jmnowak 3 months ago

        Yes, definitely fit in, for many reasons which I won’t divulge here!! LOL. And, yes, I think my special cream was the best part. Yummo. Cheeri-pip. 😍

  7. YesterdayAfter 3 months ago

    Oh wow Charlie love the transparency of the plastic container and the beautiful and colorful fruit! Another great one! 🙂 <3

    • Author

      Thanks so much, Carolina! 😃💕 I love the transparency effect you can achieve with watercolors… it’s addictive!! hehe

      • YesterdayAfter 3 months ago

        Yes it is very addictive! Watercolor is such a beautiful and powerful medium! 😉 <3

  8. memadtwo 3 months ago

    And kiwis! I definitely never tasted one as a child. Plus, they are fun to draw. (K)

    • Author

      Yes! hehe… I don’t think I had Kiwi as a kid either… actually… I’m not sure I had much whole fruit. It was mostly from a can! Lol 😊

  9. Ellie 3 months ago

    Fruit cocktail! Thanks for another reminder of those “foods” that were such a treat when I was little. (“Foods” because I’m not sure that there was any nutritional value after all the processing.) I have to see if they still sell fruit cocktail. As always, your Doodlewash is wonderful. You are inspiring me to work on painting glass and shiny surfaces.

    • Author

      Thanks so much, Ellie! 😃💕 Yeah… we definitely had a lot of “food” in quotes back then. But so much fun to remember! I’m sure if I tried it today it would taste weird, so I’m just sticking with the super sweet memories! hehe

  10. snigdhadotcom 3 months ago

    Gorgeous painting😊😊…well done charlie👍

  11. Monique 3 months ago

    I love that you share the colors too! Great fruit cocktail!

    • Author

      Thanks so much, Monique! 😃💕 I will say on this one… I used those colors, but not a lot of water. I do that sometimes when I’m rushing and don’t have time for another layer. 😊hehe

  12. Sharon Bonin-Pratt 3 months ago

    That fruit cocktail we had as kids was awful – bland and mushy and barely reminiscent of fruit. But the one you painted is my favorite airport go to snack – and with the plastic dome lid! Of course it’s always ridiculously expensive in the terminals but I must admit that at least this more modern version of fruit cocktail is very tasty.
    Still, I do love maraschino cherries. Yum yum!

    • Author

      Thanks, Sharon! 😃💕 Yeah… those cherries are yum! The ones in the can were just a bit “off”… lol… but still my fave to find!

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