Certainly one of the best combos in the world consists of french fries paired with ketchup. At least, that’s I would have said as a kid, since that was my favorite combo at the time. There were other dipping options, of course, which included mayonnaise, mustard, aioli, and even milkshakes. But I always preferred the standard fair best back then and would just try the other options occasionally. In truth, fries are pretty awesome and go well with a host of pairings. Really anything fried is pretty delicious and turns into a questionably healthy, but certainly satisfying dish. I was at a bar once that served fried Twinkies as their signature dessert. These are those little oddly yellow pound cakes filled with unidentifiable fluff and inexplicably promoted via an anthropomorphized cartoon cowboy version known as Twinkie The Kid. I, of course, had to order and try this fried version, if nothing else, for the sake of pop research. When it arrived at my table, however, I was a little aghast. In its fried form, it’s not quite the sunny dessert that it once was, and looked a bit more like a turd. It was lightly dusted with powdered sugar, but that didn’t help the presentation one bit. It only managed to transform it into a turd with unfortunate case of dandruff.
Though I’m certainly a huge proponent of innovation and trying new things in general, not everything new turns out to be a winning idea. Sometimes, there’s not only comfort to be found in the usual everyday things, but a very good reason why they were paired together in the first place. Some things just work well together and when you find that wonderful pairing, it’s fine to simply stick with it. Whether it’s a dish you enjoy or a dish of person you managed to find and marry. When things work, they just work. There’s no need to question or wonder why, it’s best to simply lean into that joy and experience each wonderful moment it brings. While painting each and every day, there are days when I feel like branching out and trying new colors, for example, and others when I simply must have the comfort of my core little palette of only four colors. Like, today, which seemed a good fit for this popular comfort food.
As we head into the weekend, I hope you’re enjoying all the pairings that make you smile the most. Life’s far to short to try to force a fit. When something works for you, I say, cheer and enjoy it! For the record, I’m about the enjoy a little spätzle and a glass of wine. A pairing I actually enjoyed last night and asked Philippe if we could repeat this evening. Though there are so many new things to be discovered, when you find something you truly enjoy, it’s fun to try indulge in it again and again. When you’re painting and sketching and find that perfect match, it’s what will ultimately become the very ingredients of your personal style. Embrace it and share it! It’s such joy to view all the wonderful artwork of our big little community here on Doodlewash. Though lots of people showed up with paintings of fries today, not one of them is the same. We’ve each made our own personal choices, picked colors that excite us, and delivered our own view of the world. And the results are always just the right combination. A blend of personal choices that are sometimes complex, yet always a simply satisfying combination, like ketchup and fries.
About the Doodlewash
Da Vinci Paint Co.: Nickel Azo Yellow, Quinacridone Red, 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!