Today, I decided to play a little with perspective for our rabbit prompt. Though I’m constantly sketching different things, I’ve drawn a handful of rabbits since I started this art journey as I think they’re really cute. I keep thinking that one day I’ll focus on a single subject matter for a time, but my short attention span reminds me I’m doing exactly what works for me best. I often feel like a rabbit hopping from one thing to the next, but I always have a lot of fun. And, for me anyway, I find I learn more when I’m simply doing things I love rather than conscientiously trying to learn. There’s no pressure that way. I approach online classes in the same way. It’s just super fun to play and try things that other people teach, like all those field trips I enjoyed as a kid. So, when it comes to sketching and painting, I just show up and play each day, enjoying the moment. Yet, it’s still rewarding to see little improvements appear over time. I do hope to improve and discover new and different ways to approach my illustrations. But, I’ve learned that just showing up is the simplest way to do so. And, as it is so often in life, the simplest things bring the most happiness.
Today, it was a bit warmer here, but still a bit of a chill in the air, so I spent much of the day indoors. Philippe and I ended up in a bit of rabbit hole watching one of those makeover shows. This one was from Great Britain where people are nominated by friends or family because their look is a little garish or questionable. Three stylists, one for hair, one for makeup, and one for clothes all jump in to create a new look for the person. What was fascinating is that, many times, Philippe and I found ourselves not liking the final look presented. And each time we disagreed with the stylists, it was because the look didn’t match the personality of the person. They didn’t make an enhanced version of someone, but instead, simply made them into someone else entirely. There were indeed some extreme personalities on the show, but there was always something rather endearing about these people. It was a good reminder that while it’s certainly fun to try new things and mix up styles, there’s always something precious there that makes a person unique. That, to me, is something to always keep, cultivate and celebrate.
As much as I wish I could be more focused, it’s that very quirk of doing whatever comes to mind that created this very site and everything that’s come along with it. So, I’m certainly pleased for that. Maybe it all could have happened in the same way with a plan in place, but it was a heck of a lot more fun because there wasn’t one. And it was the perfect approach for me personally. That’s why, I don’t advocate any single approach to watercolor painting and sketching, but happily celebrate them all. I’ve no idea what might be the best approach for someone reading this. It all depends on the person. But, I DO know some amazing teachers who’ve helped me along my art journey, so I happily recommend them! I’ve jumped in and tried lots of different painting styles on my journey and that’s the method I think works best. So, when people ask me what I suggest when they’re just beginning to paint and sketch, I suggest that they try all of the methods they possibly can and see what clicks best for them. I’ve personally found there’s so many wonderful things I can learn this way, even when it feels like I’m just hopping around.
About the Doodlewash
Da Vinci Paint Co.: Yellow Ochre, Vermillion, Opus (Vivid Pink), Terra Cotta, and Cobalt Blue. Lamy Al-Star Safari Fountain Pen with sepia 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!
Creator of Doodlewash®, founder of World Watercolor Month (July), World Watercolor Group™, and host of the Sketching Stuff Podcast. 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!