In Just One Year

Ladybug Ladybird Beetle Watercolor Painting

For our prompt of “Ladybug” today, I only had time for a sketch of just the little beetle itself. Of course, since it nearly filled my sketchbook page it wasn’t quite as little anymore. I would never want to meet a ladybug this huge and far prefer them in their original super tiny form. Ladybugs, or ladybirds, only live for up to one year. In that time they can still scarf down about 5,000 aphids making them a gardener’s dream. Yet, that’s a really short life by human standards. Sometimes, I find myself wishing I could accomplish something, yet pushing it off to some arbitrary date in the future. “I’ve got time,” I’ll say to myself as I try to convince me that I’m not just being a touch lazy. Sometimes, it might also be a touch of fear that’s holding me back. So, I wondered what it might be like if I changed my thinking. What could DO in a year to push all of those dreams forward, rather than just hope they’ll happen someday?

This is something I’ve been considering quite a lot as last year wasn’t as productive as I’d hoped it would be. I thought I would publish multiple books and maybe even make some more videos. Well, that didn’t quite happen. Okay, it didn’t happen at all. Instead, life happened, and I sort of got lost in all of my grand plans and told myself I’d start again next year. So, this year, I’m going to live it like I’m a ladybug and try to make more of those things happen. I’m still not sure on making lots of videos as I don’t really have the time and would rather write more books instead. But, I am returning to awesome free online Sketchbook Revival Workshop this year, so I’ll hope you’ll sign up and catch my second-ever video appearance when it goes live later this month! Also, my next Sketching Stuff Activity book, this one is all about sketching food, will be available later this month as well. I don’t know what it is about spring, but I get sort of crazy motivated and suddenly everything happens at once!

Spring still hasn’t officially started, so I feel like I have a bit of a head start this year. Hopefully, I’ll be able to make more things happen before the year ends. But, one thing I’m certain about is that no matter what happens, or fails to happen, I’m always going to be kind to myself. It’s always enough to just try something. Maybe something amazing will come of it or maybe I’ll just learn more along the way. Either way, I’ll chalk it all up to a success. If I’ve learned one important thing on this journey, it’s that DOing is everything. Even if it’s just a little bit each and every day. That time all adds up and exciting things can come from those little advances I make while playing around in my sketchbook. Which is where you’ll still always find me today, no matter what else I’ve got going on in my life. Page by page, I just keep right on dreaming of about all of the things I might be able to DO, in just one year.

Want To Sketch Stuff With Me? Check Out My Activity Book!

About the Doodlewash

Da Vinci Paint Co.: Hansa Yellow Medium, Quinacridone Red, Vermilion, Leaf Green, and Indigo. Lamy Al-Star Safari Fountain Pen (Broad Nib) 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!
Ladybug Ladybird Beetle Watercolor Painting Sketchbook Detail


Recommended5 recommendationsPublished in By Charlie
  1. Karen Fortier 2 years ago

    Fantastic ladybug Charlie! I am glad the ones on my bathroom window aren’t that big.😉 Good luck with Sketchbook Revival this year. I enjoyed your video last year. I have taken the past two years but no time this year. I have a full plate of art going on which makes me very happy but I have to say no to some things, but not Doodlewash!

    • Author
      Charlie O'Shields 2 years ago

      Thanks so much, Karen! 😃💕Appreciate it! And yay! Glad you’ll still have time for Doodlewash!

  2. Mary Roff 2 years ago

    Love that giant ladybug!! If ladybugs are supposed to be lucky I’m pretty sure this one will bring giant sized luck 🥰. Enjoyed sketchbook revival last year and look forward to participating in at least some of the workshop this year..

    • Author
      Charlie O'Shields 2 years ago

      Thanks so much, Mary! 😃💕 Yay! Hope you’ll catch my video… they’re so rare! hehe 😉

      • Mary Roff 2 years ago

        I plan on catching your video and I’m sure it will be fun!! 😊

  3. Sandra Strait 2 years ago

    Thank you, Charlie for giving me more reason to get going with all my projects. Like you, I’ve been a bit slothful. I think my reasons have been valid enough, but it’s time to get moving again!

    • Author
      Charlie O'Shields 2 years ago

      Hehe! Slothful is fun though in winter I have to admit!! Yay to moving again! 😃💕

  4. Lisa Ann Ulibarri 2 years ago

    Love your lady bug!!! Sweet glad your doing sketchbook revival again!! Happy dancing lol. Here is too all the awesome things that will come in this year!!! 🙂

    • Author
      Charlie O'Shields 2 years ago

      Thanks so much, Lisa! 😃💕 It’s going to be a fun year ahead!

  5. LoriCtoo 2 years ago

    Nice little ladybug. I don’t know why, but when I picture them, they always have a purse, a hat, an umbrella and shoes. Strutting down the street with a big smile. Must be the right side of the brain kicking in.

    • Author
      Charlie O'Shields 2 years ago

      Thanks so much, Lori! 😃💕 hehe! I think that’s exactly how ladybugs should be! Love it!

  6. Danai Mongkolrat 2 years ago

    Very nice

  7. Jacob 2 years ago

    That’s beautiful, and I love that green too! I’m totally going to sign up for this Sketchbook dealie just for you 😛 Do the workshops stay up for long? I fear I’m going to be ridiculously busy this month.

    • Author
      Charlie O'Shields 2 years ago

      Thanks so much, Jacob! 😃💕 And yay! You get a couple to watch in email each day for a couple of weeks. They’re about 30-40 minutes each… my is sometimes a touch longer since I ramble. 😉

  8. Lisa 2 years ago

    I just saw that the time is changing this weekend. Is that true? Things go so much faster as I grow older. It seems like we just turned the clocks back.

    I was going through a bunch of old photos that I got when my grandma Mabel died. They were mainly pictures of dead people. Even the picture of my family with mom, dad, and my sister and brother and me only had two of us left since my brother died last year. It was odd thinking of that, but in some ways, quite the incentive to get stuff done if there are things I want to do. And maybe, eat more cake!

    • Author
      Charlie O'Shields 2 years ago

      Yep! We lose an hour this weekend, but gain a longer day, so it’s worth it! And yes, I have photos like that. Always a good reminder to get stuff done… and of course, eat more cake! 😉

  9. Susan Masters 2 years ago

    Lovely ladybird . Just one year?? I’ve done and learned so much in this past one year amazing! This group is mostly responsible for that, see many great things can come in just one year.

    • Author
      Charlie O'Shields 2 years ago

      Thanks so much, Susan! 😃💕 That’s awesome to hear! Yeah, a lot of great things can happen in just one year!

  10. Gary Middleton 2 years ago

    Great painting Charlie. I love to see the ladybirds and their larvae in my garden, because it means they’re munching on the aphids on my roses.

    • Author
      Charlie O'Shields 2 years ago

      Thanks so much, Gary! 😃💕 Yeah, ladybirds are so wonderful for that!

  11. Fatima Chamkha 2 years ago

    Fantastic ladybug Charlie!

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