Today’s prompt of “bones” was another one that seemed naturally beautiful and wonderful in theory, but rather difficult to decide what to sketch for it. Bare bones, though perfectly natural, can be rather macabre in a painting, so I added a bit more orange to brighten things up a bit. Adding to this, I had the least amount of time yet today to make a post, and so you have some random bones I found, sketched furiously fast in nearly a single contour line drawing and then lots of splashing around of four colors. Yet, I did manage to fill the page once more, so that’s definitely something. As I continue to experiment, this doodlewash was sort of freeing in that I literally just attacked the page and didn’t hold up until my time ran out, much like the subject matter. On the other hand, I do find bones rather fascinating as they represent the foundation of so many living creatures. They’re the building blocks that make us who we are, and hold that something together. But yeah, when laid bare like this, they’re also the signal of things to come. Best not to dwell on that bit too much though.
I initially considered sketching a dinosaur skeleton, but given my time constraints, opted out. But seeing a giant T-Rex reassembled at a natural history museum has always thrilled me. It’s incredible to think that something so gigantic once roamed this planet we call home. It’s equally comforting to think that birds are the only living dinosaurs we need to worry about these days and that they’ve shrunk to a less terrifying size. That said, when served a chicken for dinner, I truly prefer it to be decoupled from its carcass first. I’ve never much enjoyed the idea of eating meat directly off the bone, which is probably why, as an adult, most of my meals are largely vegetarian. But looking at bones, sans meat, is a rather interesting lesson in life. Though solid and strong, there’s a certain fragility to them that makes it incredible that we’re able to exist at all. So, I don’t know if I’ve done them justice in this blazingly fast rendition, but I do have an admiration for everything they represent.
I’m enjoying the freedom of these recent paintings. I’ve no idea whatsoever what I’m doing and approaching each one with no plan at all. Grab for an idea, and then jump in and see what happens next. Just a bunch of shapes and things in front of me that I attempt to put down on paper. In the middle of making these recent doodlewashes, I’ve gotten sort of lost in a good way. Each one is wonderfully random and not at all what I anticipated when I started. After to spending a year and half studiously sketching daily, I hope that I’ve laid some sort of foundation. Something I can use to help me jump forward and attempt things I haven’t tried before. Each scratch of the fountain pen and each flick of the brush takes me to something new. Though it’s been rather daunting, I just take a deep breath and remember it’s all just a little joyful exercise. All I have to do is have fun in the process, and always focus on getting a good start for each sketch by simply laying down the bones.
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!