House Swap

Sarah's House

So for today’s part of the tour, the first stop is Plymouth, Devon, UK, at Guest Doodlewasher Sarah Smalldon’s home. If you’ve been reading this blog for awhile, you might remember that Sarah and I drew each other’s dogs awhile back (Cockapoo Challenge), so we thought we’d try each other’s houses next. And it was much more difficult than either of us expected!

Above is my doodlewash of Sarah’s house, well it’s actually the gray one in the middle with the black door, as we both live in row homes. My version is extra wonky and the actual home is not as tilted in real life. I was hoping to do a better job of it since this is my first house portrait, but the idea of sketching someone’s home kind of freaked me out, so I think it shows in the doodlewash.

Doodlewash HomeI’m much more fond of Sarah’s doodlewash, and she’ll be taking over the KC tour today, by showing you our house in Kansas City! But she too, struggled and after the initial sketch, thought it was too dark so didn’t just doodlewash it, she actually washed it and hung it on an olive tree in the garden to dry! (click here if you’d like to see the stages of this piece as it’s super cool!)

I love it, and it definitely looks exactly like our home (which is a semi-attached row home). I’ve mentioned that I live directly next to a cemetery before and she even managed to pop in a couple of the headstones at the right!

Sarah said, “Ok, I have to stop this one now as I keep fiddling with it to try and make it better… which in turn usually makes it look worse ! It’s not the best house I’ve done but I really do think the minute you have in your head ‘this is for someone else’ .. Or ‘this is a commission’ something kicks in and the pressure starts which inhibits the work!” 

I have to agree! But this was super fun anyway! After trying my first portrait which caused the same angst, I definitely understand what she was saying. I don’t know why our minds do things like that to us, but it’s super irritating! 

But that’s why we DO it! Keep challenging ourselves to try new things, even when those things freak us out. Eventually, those fears will subside and we’ll discover that we can do anything we set our minds too. We go back to the paper and grab the brush again and again, and keep on trying, no matter what. Why? Because there’s always this wonderful feeling that keeps us coming back for the next doodlewash. A warm and comfortable feeling that you might even say, feels a bit like coming home.

Recommended1 recommendationPublished in By Charlie, Featured Artists
  1. Jodi 7 years ago

    They are both awesome!!! Such great artists!

  2. memadtwo 7 years ago

    Both drawings have a lot of personality. And they look architecturally solid, something I have yet to achieve. What a fun exchange you’ve started.
    I’ve run a painting underwater myself…Highly recommended when frustrated. (K.)

  3. Kari 7 years ago

    Both are wonderful! Houses are difficult as I tried to draw my own. I did see Sarah’s IG post about literally washing a piece! I didn’t realize it was your house! Hmm.. I wonder what you two will swap next! 😜

    • Author

      Hehe…thanks Kari! After the house challenge we haven’t discussed anything more. Think we’ll take a bit of a break! But who knows! 😉

  4. Teresa Robeson 7 years ago

    I agree with the others that both are wonderful! I have wanted to try house portraits ever since I saw some cool ones 20+ years ago…I drew a barn once, but never did draw a house yet. :}

    • Author

      Hehe…I’ve drawn lots of commercial buildings and few barns, but house seem different. Super personal. Like portraits. Argh! Lol But I’ll have to try again one day!

  5. kirkistan 7 years ago

    Great drawings. You have both created precise and warm drawings, and yet the are precise and warm in slightly different ways. Both are wonderful.

    • Author

      Thanks Kirk! These were fun even if they felt a little extra stressful. And these little (errr…big!) challenges are fun!

  6. Until you mentioned it, I didn’t even notice your drawing was crooked. Even now I can see it, it doesn’t bother me. It’s got character. To be honest, I find accurate, “architectural” drawings quite boring!

  7. And as for Sarah’s drawing, I think the fact that she *actually* washed it is pretty cool, and the end result is great 🙂

  8. grahammcquade 7 years ago

    It reminds me of a couple of pieces where an artist in LA? and London? each verbally described a scene and the other painted an image of what was described. The results were very interesting.

  9. Nice work, Charlie and Sarah! Enjoyed them both! I think you’re great at buildings, Charlie. I didn’t notice a funny feeling in this other than reading your text. Rock on, my friend. 💛

  10. Snehal Kank 7 years ago

    Both are awesome! I like the little colorful bush and off-course sky ! 🙂 Sarah has done a great job! I like her sketching strokes, I have started following her on Instagram!

    • Author

      Yay!!! 😃😃I linked artists again! That’s my mission! Hehe… so happy you like her work and followed her. She’s pretty awesome! 😉

  11. ann christina 7 years ago

    Great post, love both of the paintings!!! Both such beautiful houses, you´re a lucky bunch of people!!! 😉

    • Author

      Thanks Ann!! Had no idea we both lived in terrace houses! Hehe…challenges like this are fun as you always leave new things about each other! 😃

  12. Sand Salt Moon 7 years ago

    Complete with headstones, nice house portraits – yours and Sarah’s. Very cool “exchange” between you two artists. You have an olive tree in the backyard, I am jealous!

    • Author

      Thanks Cynthia!! This was really fun. And I know! Sarah has an olive tree! I want one! My aunt had a “picture-hanging tree” once but she was an Irish traveler and into voodoo so I guess that’s not the same.

  13. artandmoondreams 7 years ago

    Such lovely homes, and beautiful paintings. They both have such character and charm ;D

  14. thegirlonthego08 7 years ago

    Brilliant 🙂

  15. Daniel Jeddman 7 years ago

    Nice place to be.. could plant vineyard 🙂 around there

  16. sakshamchopra 7 years ago

    Reblogged this on sakshamchopra3blog.

  17. Wren 7 years ago

    This is so encouraging to me! I’ve just taken up brush and pen again after *blushes* 30 years of doing everything but my art. I’m overjoyed that the talent (if not all the skills) is still there, ready to tap, but I do struggle with my confidence. It helps to know that even experienced, super-talented artists also face this self-dout–and overcome it. Thanks for this post. I’m about to become a loyal follower. 🙂

    • Author

      Oh self-doubt is just part of the fun of doing art! Lol … If it ever went away entirely we’d just get cocky and nobody would like us much! 😉 Cool to hear you’re taking up brush and pen again! So you know the obvious next step right? Be a Guest Doodlewash on this blog!! Yay! Just send me a note via the Let’s Connect link! 😉👍🏻

  18. passion8writer 7 years ago

    They are beautiful paintings..and yeah such an inspiration.. u CAN really do what u wish to..:)

  19. Stuart M. Perkins 7 years ago

    Both are so great!

  20. kim881 7 years ago

    These paintings are so fresh!

  21. piilarferrer8 7 years ago

    Sígueme y te sigo 😊

  22. writegill 7 years ago

    Light and refreshing!

  23. jmpod 7 years ago

    I love the idea of connecting with someone for inspiration and creative motivation. I once did that with a dear friend – we traded photos every day and it was really empowering and energizing. I loved the experience. Glad you are doing the same. Have fun! Great results!

  24. serendipitydoit 7 years ago

    I love this idea and think both of you produced pretty amazing paintings. At first I thought this post was going to be about house swapping. I might even try a doodlewash myself today.

    • Author

      Thanks friend! Glad you liked them! And yes please! You should try a doodlewash! It’s fun and really, everyone can make something cool! 😉

  25. tunedin1997 7 years ago

    Wow you’re crazy talented! 😀

  26. Houses have an energy and a spirit of their own. I think you captured some of that in your painting and writing. Thanks for the post.

  27. wendolieb 7 years ago

    Many nice photos here, Charlie! You’re welcome to check out my blog and my instagram on @wendolieb 👍

  28. empilred13 7 years ago

    This is great! I love both of your creations! I love this idea, I would love to someday do something like this.

    • Author

      Thanks so much!! 😃 You should do something like this… it’s super fun! Could be photos! Or…make a doodlewash too! 😉

  29. Matthew J Daniels 7 years ago

    Great work, both of you are very talented! Had a watercolour done of our house and it’s great!

    • Author

      Appreciate it Matthew!! 👍🏻😃 And bummer we didn’t get to you first, Sarah does house portrait commissions! Hehe 😉

  30. I enjoy them both very much! Love the “wonky-ness” of your portrait!!

  31. EnviroSolutions 7 years ago

    Beautiful paintings and great post. can’t wait for the next.

  32. The Bazan 7 years ago

    hi im a new blogger id LOVE it if ud check out my first blog ❤️❤️

  33. agusdeados 7 years ago

    Im an arte teacher and JUST love your paintings!! keep uploading more!

  34. Danielle Hubner 7 years ago

    I love these and the whole idea of it! Drawings of homes are always more fun as they tend to be more whimsical than they are in real life. Well done!

  35. iam.rvdy 7 years ago

    The houses look great. I mostly do sketches and stuff but hey after seeing this I will try to paint more.

  36. josephinegeorges 7 years ago


  37. anwyn84 7 years ago

    Wow lovely drawings and a great idea.

  38. pretty painting 🙂

  39. Poetess Dee 7 years ago

    Beautiful 😏 take a sho’t left to …

    stay blessed !!

  40. caroljforrester 7 years ago

    These pieces are beautiful, they both have such a cosy style. I also love the idea of hanging a painting out to dry on an olive tree.

  41. wtcbank 7 years ago

    Reblogged this on wtcbank.

  42. toreik 7 years ago

    I’m really loving the artwork. Cool concept, cool ideas, and cool post.

  43. looking4heanna 7 years ago

    A piece of art!! 😉

  44. A Painter's Hand 7 years ago

    Your work is amazing & very creative..liked it…..keep posting.. 🙂

    I am new to wordpress..inviting you to see my work as well.. 🙂

  45. VE 7 years ago

    This is great!! I loved both 🙂

  46. BunKaryudo 7 years ago

    I can’t believe how amazingly good you both are at art! If I tried to render an artistic version of my own home, I’m sure people would still have no idea whether I lived in a house, an apartment or a shoebox. Most likely they would say, “You live in a squiggle?”

  47. sahmlifee 7 years ago

    I’m a new reader, and loved your artwork. Though I’m not sure what doodlewash is I was able to appreciate it all the same cheers!

    • Author

      Awww thanks new friend! 😃😃A doodlewash is just sketching or painting with any ol’ cool water soluble medium (usually watercolors but can be watercolor pencils, washable ink, etc)! Anyone can do it…you should try one! 😉

      • sahmlifee 7 years ago

        Only thing I’ve done are adult coloring books you should do a tutorial!!

        • Author

          I know! I’ve had it on the list for ages. 😊😊If I can ever get around to it I’ll try one, I will most definitely find a guest artist to do so! I actually have one in mind who does lovely simple videos! 😉

  48. Kania-info 7 years ago

    Reblogged this on Kania-Info .

  49. ramzan66 7 years ago

    Reblogged this on ramzan66's Blog .

  50. annilz 7 years ago

    Hi, I just started a blog, it would be great if you checked it out. Thanks.

  51. Patricia 7 years ago

    This is very interesting to see the progression of the drawing. If only I had that talent and eye!! Lovely.

  52. Your houses tell a story too, love your drawings thanks for sharing

  53. FrancisKarl 7 years ago

    Great artwork! Keep posting! (y)

  54. Lemon 7 years ago

    This is such a great idea, and I love the results. Nice work, Charlie and Sarah!

    • Author

      Thanks Nancy! This was super fun! It was part two of the challenge, the first being each other’s dogs. It’s tough to draw something you know is so important to someone else. Always get scared you’ll screw if up! 😳hehe

  55. […] Source: House Swap […]

  56. tinyandtoad 7 years ago

    I love your Plymouth pic. We have lived in two houses just like that in Plymouth and I’m having fun imagining where in Plymouth I might have seen Sarah’s house. In my mind’s eye it is just around the corner from where we used to live 😉

    • Author

      Awww that’s cool!! So glad you liked it! I guess it could have been a house you passed many times. Hehe 😉Glad it brought good memories!

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