For our prompt of “Weeds” today, I wasn’t sure what to sketch and found this one rather challenging to come up with something. To add to that, I only had a few minutes to quickly scribble and color. I looked up the definition of a “weed” and it’s apparently just something that applies to undesirable plants in human-controlled settings. That last bit was striking in that all sorts of leaves, grasses, and lovely wild flowers might be thought of as weeds to humans, but to animals, they’re just the beautiful tapestry of home. And we can say that people are sometimes “in the weeds” to describe that feeling of being caught up in details and complexities. Weeds are things that can’t be easily controlled, and well, humans rather like to control things. But, I for one, sometimes love being in the weeds, and playing with watercolor where the results always vary. There’s no way to control it if you’re moving quickly, and I’m always moving rather quickly, so it’s a surprise each and every time. And while human nature seeks to control things, the other nature always knows exactly how things should happen in the end.
While many nights lately, I’ve been able to carve some time and make my sketch and post for the day rather early in the evening, today was quite different. It was definitely a Monday, in that everything seemed busy and crazy again after a blissfully relaxing weekend. I actually asked Philippe what day it was as I wasn’t convinced this week could be this incredibly busy without some sort of running start. But, he informed me that indeed it was only Monday and I was left wondering how on earth I’ll get through the rest of the week. Some days just feel like a concentrated juice drink. When a little water is added, suddenly everything bursts forward with flavor and intensity. I thought I was ready to start the week, but I think part of me was still clinging to the weekend like a security blanket. I guess I wasn’t totally ready to lurch back into all of the daily responsibilities that I have and so I’ve been sort of struggling to keep up today. My work day included all of those tiny little details that sort of roll off the brain unless one has adopted a laser focus.
While I adore a bit of detail in my sketches, it’s never purely accurate detail. I don’t really have a laser focus. I just like to get across the general idea of something. I love concepts and the big picture of things most. What I include as detail is really just a bit of an illusion. It’s the idea of detail, but not really the actual details themselves. So, today, with only minutes to sketch, I ended up with just the purest version of how my mind works, since I had to stop at the level of detail that happens almost immediately when I make something. I rather liked the illustrative look, but it lacks some of the subtle shadows and other things I include when I fuss over things a touch more. It strikes me, though, that little nuances in both painting and writing are often a wonderful thing. I know that personally, I enjoy the sketches that I stole a bit more time for so I could add more of those illusions of detail. Sometimes just a little burst of blue or a shadow that goes darker can transform a sketch into something rather incredible. There’s actually something really wonderful about having the time to get lost in the weeds.
About the Doodlewash
Da Vinci Paint Co.: Hansa Yellow Medium, Yellow Ochre, Quinacridone Red, Cobalt Turquoise, Ultramarine (Green Shade), Terra Cotta, and Indigo. Lamy Al-Star Safari Fountain Pen with black ink in an A5 Hahnemühle Watercolour Book. Want to purchase a print of this doodlewash? Click here!