Lost In The Woods

Woodland Animals Rabbit Deer Raccon Finding Rusted Car In Forest Watercolor Painting Illustration

For our prompt of “Rusted” today, I thought of an old rusted car. And then I thought about a group of woodland creatures discovering this abandoned car in the forest, because yeah, that’s just how my mind works. I’m not sure if this trio is simply curious or if they are actually a group of master sleuths ready to uncover the mystery that’s before them. I rather enjoy imagining the latter option. Indeed, this car has apparently been there for some years, so this isn’t the first group of animals to discover it. If there is a mystery there, it’s decades old and might have been solved previously, but there’s always a new set of creatures finding it for the first time. I’ll let you imagine whatever story you like most as it could be anything at all really. I’m been enjoying making these little visual story starters and it’s fun to think about what happens next or what happened just before this scene. Anytime one finds something out of place, it’s always a good opportunity to uncover a lovely bit of mystery.

While it’s indeed my hope to write and illustrate a picture book of some kind, this bit of practice suits my attention span. It’s the world’s shortest story indeed, but these are fun to create. I adore thinking of possibilities more than focusing on just one, so it’s a bit of problem when it comes to writing an actual story. But sketching a little story is super fun! Today, I snuck in a little extra time to practice painting a full scene. I learned a few things along the way, but mostly just discovered that I still have much to practice and learn. I did enjoy how this one turned out though, and it gave me ideas for other backgrounds in the future. I think that’s the fun part about sketching for practice. I can just play and enjoy whatever happens in the moment. And every time, I’m guaranteed to solve at least a tiny bit of a mystery that eluded me before today.

This evening, Philippe and I were trying to find something to watch on television, but the options seemed equally endless. Each thing we started was deemed boring a few minutes in, so we started something else instead. We’re on to option three now, but I’m not sure if it will stick or not. It’s animated so the chances are better, but it’s already a little dull so only time will tell. In truth, it’s really tough to write a story that’s compelling. And when you’re like Philippe and I with a preciously short attention span, it’s even tougher still. But we’ll soon find something that holds our interest for a bit before heading to bed. I feel like lately my mind is spinning with various ideas and nothing seems to land in place. Yet, that’s a really fun place to be! I adore it when ideas are just bouncing around and leaving more mysteries than solutions in their wake. Something awesome is most definitely heading my way. Even if, in this moment, I’m just a bit lost in the woods.

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Woodland Animals Rabbit Deer Raccon Finding Rusted Car In Forest Watercolor Painting Illustration Sketchbook Detail
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32 Comments
  1. Lisa 1 month ago

    You know, I bet you could do a tell your own story book, with two page spreads of paintings like this one and then the text which is just a few questions to get the kid started telling her own story.

    • Author
      Charlie O'Shields 1 month ago

      Thanks, Lisa! 😃💕 Yeah, I wanted to make a storybook for people of all ages, not just kids, but I think the same idea could work! 😉

  2. Mary Roff 1 month ago

    This is wonderful, Charlie and open to so many stir lines. I think the deer and the rabbit are new to that neck of the woods and Mr. Raccoon is telling them the legend of the mystery car.

    • Author
      Charlie O'Shields 1 month ago

      Thanks so much, Mary! 😃💕 hehe! I love your interpretation… yeah, I think the raccoon is definitely in charge somehow in this one!

  3. Fascinante, Charlie, buen trabajo

  4. Karen Fortier 1 month ago

    Fabulous Charlie and so many storyline possibilities! I know that this will all come together and be marvelous!

    • Author
      Charlie O'Shields 1 month ago

      Thanks so much, Karen! 😃💕 I hope so… I’m getting closer and closer to an idea at least! hehe

  5. Sandra Strait 1 month ago

    I’m still trying to figure out how to format my first Diggory story for a print book and it’s been a trial. I have a really hard time keeping my focus when checking image sizes and remembering page breaks and remembering what I need to do to make everything match. I’m glad I decided to go back to my first book before starting the next though, because I’m learning a lot, and I know it will help me avoid mistakes on the next. Worthwhile, even if I end up not publishing the first one.

    • Author
      Charlie O'Shields 1 month ago

      That’s an awesome idea! 😃💕 Yeah, there’s so much to figure out that’s not really the fun part… hehe… I feel the same. I just wish it would all spin itself into the correct format and magically publish!! lol

  6. Marisela Delgado 1 month ago

    Gorgeous giraffe, Charlie! I love giraffes! 😊 Your painting is so beautiful! It’s perfect! The colors are lovely and I love the license plate! Very clever, Charlie. 😎 Sometimes I get bored like that. Before I got injured, I used to go run every evening. It was wonderful and so beautiful seeing the night sky cross over like a blanket. It was a beautiful sight especially if I timed it just right and I was at the top of the hill, which overlooked the city skyline. Twilight is so gorgeous. 🌌🌃 There is a quote that I need to look for in order to do it justice, but basically says “night time exposes the most beautiful colors.” Or something to that effect. When I got injured and my doctor sidelined me, I thought I would lose my mind, Charlie! TV could not compare! Nothing could. I cried and cried. Don’t get me wrong. I watch plenty of tv, but what could possibly compare to nature? I have yet to run again. It ‘s painful to think that I may never run again, but standing beneath the night sky to talk to the Lord is still a highlight. Your painting is so beautiful, Charlie. I love the beauty of nature. 🌼🌻 Today is International Day of the Dog 🐕 so give Phineas a sweet kiss and hug for me. Hola, sweet Phineas!

    • Author
      Charlie O'Shields 1 month ago

      Thanks so much, Marisela! 😃💕 hehe… it’s actually meant to be a fawn, baby deer in the background! lol But I love giraffes too! I think the night and being under the stars is the best therapy of all! Always so beautiful! Yes! I almost did a dog for this one in honor of that, but I just gave Phineas a kiss instead!

      • Marisela Delgado 1 month ago

        Hi, Charlie! I meant the giraffe from your “related articles” section. It was showing your giraffe. I should’ve explained. haha Sorry. 💜

        • Author
          Charlie O'Shields 1 month ago

          Ohhh! LOL… yeah… the related articles are always different that pop up, so I had no idea! Funny! 😂 Glad you liked whichever giraffe appeared! hehe

  7. Gary Middleton 1 month ago

    Great doodle Charlie. I love the TV programmes where they find old classic cars and restore them.

    • Author
      Charlie O'Shields 1 month ago

      Thanks so much, Gary! 😃💕 We’ve been watching several restoration shows… usually antiques of various kinds.

  8. Manoj Kumar Chowdhury 1 month ago

    Fantastic work and theme Charlie

  9. Cathy France 1 month ago

    Bonjour, c’est tellement différent ce que vous faites en ce moment, c’est bien pour des livres pour les enfants, mais tellement moins abouti que quand vous faisiez un seul objet, ou un seul animal, les détails sont estompés, regardez vos anciens lièvres ou lapins, je préférais vos oeuvres d’avant, mais, il est normal que vous évoluez … donc, à vous suivre…

    • Author
      Charlie O'Shields 1 month ago

      Bonjour, Cathy! 🙂 Yeah, I’m practicing different things now and trying scenes… single objects are great for clipart and practice, but there’s not as much story there and gets a bit boring after awhile for me! 😉 That intense detail is something I’ll work back in, but can’t do in a complex scene with the time I have. It’s all just practice!

  10. LoriCtoo 1 month ago

    Who wants to drive? Haha! This is beautiful. Continue on with the story. 😉 I think it would make an interesting story.

  11. Mugdha 1 month ago

    Hello Charlie,

    That’s such an intriguing scene you’ve painted! To me it looks like the abandoned car is like a port key from Harry Potter. Only here, the animals riding this car are in control and can visit any place or time in history. They could each probably revisit their grandparents’ childhoods and see how the world has changed. I totally understand the idea hurricane whirling in your mind and can relate to it completely. “… ideas leaving more mysteries than solutions” is aptly summing it up but yes, Im sure something fantastic is just round the corner for you. I hope it comes and hugs you soon. 🙂

    Love,
    Mugdha

    • Author
      Charlie O'Shields 1 month ago

      Thanks so much, Mugdha! 😃💕 Aww I love the portal and time travel idea. That’s so fun! Yeah… ideas keep swirling… one will jump out and grab me one day!

  12. Priscilla DeConti 1 month ago

    Great painting and I tell you that book is coming LOL

  13. shawnthompsonart 1 month ago

    Nice painting of the woodlands creatures and the rusted truck. I really like the expressions you put on the truck.

  14. Sharon Bonin-Pratt 1 month ago

    Another adorable illustration with so much left to our imagination. A rusted car abandoned in the woods, and three critters discovering the fun of a rusty playground. Well done, Charlie.

  15. Iisa Ebenstein 4 weeks ago

    I had to laugh happily when I saw the painting because the animals are so innocent and curious and it is adorable. Putting the tree trunks on an angle was a great idea.

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