GUEST DOODLEWASH: Drawing Gave Me A Reason To Be Myself Again

#WorldWatercolorGroup - watercolor sketch by Keiko Weafer Japan of chocolate cake - #doodlewash

#WorldWatercolorGroup - watercolor sketch by Keiko Weafer Japan of kaki - #doodlewashHi everyone! I’m Keiko from Japan (follow me on InstagramFacebook and visit my website!). I actually started drawing last summer, so it’s only been a couple months now. I never imagined that I could be a guest artist on Doodlewash so quickly! Thanks again, Charlie!

I was working as a writer and editor for 5-6 years before, but I quit about 2 years ago. After quitting, I was totally lost in life. I didn’t know what to do, or what I wanted to do. I couldn’t focus on anything and nothing got me excited. Until, I a started picture diary.

It was supposed to be a simple diary when I started, but then, I found a lot of people uploading their pictures daily on Instagram and I was like “Hmmm, ok, I guess I will try that too.”

#WorldWatercolorGroup - watercolor sketch by Keiko Weafer Japan of red bell peppers - #doodlewash

I didn’t think I’d get addicted to drawing at that time! I can’t even believe that it was just 5 months ago.

#WorldWatercolorGroup - watercolor sketch by Keiko Weafer Japan of green beans - #doodlewashI got my first SAI Brand watercolor pens just a few weeks after I started my picture diary. I was so disappointed with my drawing skills, but that made me practice really hard! I got some watercolor books for beginners and watched so many YouTube videos to imitate other people’s drawings, and I even practiced drawing straight lines and boxes over and over. I didn’t stop uploading my drawings on Instagram though. I just kept putting new artwork up everyday, even if I didn’t like them that much. It’s because I could see my drawing skills grow everyday.

#WorldWatercolorGroup - watercolor sketch by Keiko Weafer Japan of watercolor supplies - #doodlewashRecently, I’ve used HOLBEIN brand water colors and no-brand brushes. I recently bought some brushes for Japanese painting and I love them too! My workspace is set up for painting and photo-shooting. I usually sit at my desk for a couple hours every day and try to draw at least 1 or 2 pictures. Putting pictures on Instagram every single day is one of my challenges too. I sometimes only spend about half hour from sketching to painting to photo-shooting. Yes, I am a really fast drawer. Although I know I should spend more time looking at objects closely and carefully sketch more details.

One day, I noticed that when I was drawing, I wasn’t thinking about anything else and it has definitely become very therapeutic for me now. Of course, getting more followers on Instagram is fun, but seeing my own growth is the best part of drawing.

#WorldWatercolorGroup - watercolor sketch by Keiko Weafer Japan of leaves - #doodlewash

I try to draw the same object, a croissant, once a month. (I just love eating croissants! haha) Comparing my old and new artwork makes me happy and it makes me want to try even harder.

I’ve drawn many things, but I’ve been crazy about drawing food recently. I love drawing bread, sweets, and vegetables. When I found the World Watercolor Group™ in the end of October 2016, I immediately decided to participate in the November Adventure to challenge myself. And here I am! How exciting!

#WorldWatercolorGroup - watercolor sketch by Keiko Weafer Japan of pretzel- #doodlewash

Another good reason to start the November adventure was because the croissant was the theme for the first day. Looking at a new theme everyday and drawing it became a part of my daily routine!

#WorldWatercolorGroup - watercolor sketch by Keiko Weafer Japan of danish - #doodlewash

I also have my own policy about taking pictures of my artwork. I usually take pictures with a background, because I believe my artwork looks much better in daily life than just in a frame. That’s why I always put something around my artwork when I take a picture of it.

#WorldWatercolorGroup - watercolor sketch by Keiko Weafer Japan of ice cream sundae - #doodlewash

Now, I have tons of stuff that I want to try! All because I started drawing! I have all the basic tools to start anything as an artist, so there are no more excuses for me! Right now, I am trying to make painting videos, create my own website, and open an internet shop. Drawing gave me a reason to be myself again.

Keiko Weafer
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New Website (Coming Soon!)

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!
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28 Comments
  1. karen colson 11 months ago

    HI Keiko – lovely work! the progress shown with your croissant series is amazing. Question for you: I really appreciate your white highlights – are you creating those by leaving white on the paper, or by adding white with something? If adding, what are you using? Thanks!

    • Keiko 11 months ago

      Thanks for your comment! I’m glad you like my artwork!

      I use white watercolor paint, acrylic paint, and gel pens. For the Chocolate cake painting, I painted the dark brown Chocolate base first, then I painted the highlights with white acrylic for large areas, such as the large gloss on the dripping Chocolate, and used a gel pen for smaller areas, such as the small gloss details on top.

  2. Bob 11 months ago

    Congratulations! You have progressed very rapidly. Much faster than I. I’m going to have to run to catch up. Great work.

    • eigogeek 11 months ago

      Thank you Bob! I’ve been trying to paint every day so that I can get better.

      • keikoirodorigeek 11 months ago

        ↑This is from Keiko! Thanks again!

  3. theartofadyalmanza 11 months ago

    Great artwork!

    • keikoirodorigeek 11 months ago

      Thank you so much! I’m glad you like mine! 🙂

  4. memadtwo 11 months ago

    Delicious! (K)

    • keikoirodorigeek 11 months ago

      Thank you so much! “Delicious!” is the best comment for my artwork!

  5. Kristen 11 months ago

    Very good story! 😀 love the progress also! Good job 😀 they are amazing!

    • keikoirodorigeek 11 months ago

      Thank you Kristen! I will be challenging every day for all of my life! 🙂

      • Kristen 11 months ago

        It’s definitely exciting! 😀

  6. Sharon Bonin-Pratt 11 months ago

    Keiko, you have a great sense of humor and fun that comes out in your art. I love your idea of backgrounds – they provide a platform to your art.

    • keikoirodorigeek 11 months ago

      Thank you Sharon Bonin-Pratt! I’m happy about the sense of humor comment! It’s kinda hard to set up backgrounds for the pictures, but I’m having fun!

  7. Lois Westerfield 11 months ago

    Keiko,
    Love your style and your sense of humor!
    I’m going to follow your lead – post regardless of whether I believe it is a successful painting – its a good way to see progress (hopefully) but also a way to identify an area to focus on for future improvement.

    Thanks for sharing!

    Lois

    • keikoirodorigeek 11 months ago

      Thank you Lois!

      Yes! Sometimes I really don’t like my artwork….haha 😀 But for the future improvement, I should keep doing it! Thanks for your comment again!

      Keiko

  8. Azzu 11 months ago

    Hi Keiko, I love your story and your paintings are great! I’m a beginner as well (started in June 2016) and your enthusiasm is very involving. I should practice more because when I paint following a video, I fell that my paintings (I do watercolor) are not bad but I get frustrated when I decide to paint something on my own and this puts me off. I’m following the December challenge and it’s fun.
    Thank you for sharing your work 🙂

    • keikoirodorigeek 11 months ago

      Hi Azzu, Thank you for your comment! It’s good to know that I’m not the only one beginner! haha

      But yes, I got really crazy about watercolor art now! I do understand how you feel about painting your own artwork. I was so frustrated with my inability but then, I tried to look at a picture that I want to refer to. Really carefully and I just try to pick up and use all the colors I see in the picture. I still can’t do it well, but I feel better when I finish sketching and painting!

      It’s hard to enjoy painting all the time, but both you and I can do it! 😀

      • Azzu 10 months ago

        Thank you for the encouragement Keiko. You are right, I should practice everyday in order to get better 🙂 I will overcome the frustration feeling and try, try, try! Thank you!!
        P.S. I would love to visit Japan 🙂

  9. Miriam Figueras 11 months ago

    Hello Keiko! I totally relate to your story as it sort of happened to me as well. I really love your work and hope I can get to see more of it. I already follow you in Instagram ;P Keep up the good work and long live art!

    • keikoirodorigeek 11 months ago

      Hi Miriam Figueras! Thanks for your comment and following on instagram!

      I’m glad you have the same experience! I didn’t believe that “Art helps you out” idea before, but It does!!
      My goal for now is uploading my artwork on instagram everyday, so hopefully you’d enjoy them 😀

      Thanks again!!!!

  10. agoda 11 months ago

    Hi ,Keiko
    Congrats for getting this kinda opportunitie so soon.
    I can see your progress .
    I think you should introduce that amazing although shop in Ginza to everyone who loves painting.
    “GO TO ITOYA WHEN YOU COME TO JAPAN ”
    Hope you know who I am ….lmao

    • keikoirodorigeek 11 months ago

      Thanks a lot sis 😀 I didn’t expect it either!

      I should go to Tokyo and ITOYA soon… haha

  11. Sarang Khanna 11 months ago

    Wow! Intriguing as well as beautiful artworks 🙂

    • keikoirodorigeek 11 months ago

      Thank you Sarang Khanna!

      I’m glad you like them😀

  12. keikoirodorigeek 11 months ago

    Thank you Sarang Khanna!

    I’m glad you like them 😀

  13. Curious to the Max 10 months ago

    Deeeeeeeelicious drawings. I’m blaming you for the 5 pounds I gained just looking at them.

    P.S. You’ve inspired me to draw more.

  14. Agnès McLaughlin 10 months ago

    Very inspiring story!

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