Had I been paying closer attention to our art challenge prompts this month, I would have realized that the prompt today was actually “drinks.” Yesterday’s post qualified as well, but I figured I’d follow up with one of my favorite drinks as a kid, which came in the form of a strawberry milkshake. It was basically a bit of pink heaven in a tall glass, topped with whipped cream, and only one little straw that stood between me and nirvana. Well, that’s how I remember it at least. It’s been too many years to count since I’ve actually had one. They’re a bit of a calorie bomb at my age that explodes in the most inconvenient of places so I’ve been avoiding them. As many of you know, I often paint these fantasy desserts as a way of consuming them calorie-free. But back then, it was such a wonderful treat, right down to the last little futile slurps, attempting to get every last drop. I would position the straw in various places around the glass to ensure nothing went to waste. And if I were with friends at the time, that unmistakable chorus of slurping sounds meant that the joyous event was about to come to a close.
The best part about these milkshakes when I was young was that they took a bit of effort to make. There was lots of scooping of ice cream followed by the blender moment. This bit was agonizing and thrilling at the same time. I remember watching it, willing it to be done while simultaneously hoping it didn’t go too quickly as I was rather enjoying the process. This is probably why I love watercolor so much, because our relationship is roughly the same. It’s a constant battle of wills and a test of my patience that is always surprisingly fun and fulfilling. But there’s always magic to be found in things made by hand. We now live in a world where there’s a machine to help you do just about everything. And then there’s those endless single purpose machines that can clutter a kitchen and make it look more like a auto repair shop. Add to this our virtual assistants helping us find information and even decide what to do next. While I’m a huge fan of technology, as it’s what makes this site and my connection with you, dear reader, even possible, it’s not surprising I created a site that is about anything but technology.
No matter how advanced computers get, they simply can’t seem to catch up with creative folk like us. Yes, that’s anyone reading this, as we’re all creative creatures capable of doing amazing things. There’s yet to be an algorithm invented that can replicate actual personality and creative thought. I find a lot of comfort in this. I’d hate to think we humans were quite so easily replaceable. I’ve no idea why this post has taken me on this particular tangent other than to say that there’s a reason why I love looking back on my childhood. Amazing things happened and new inventions were created each and every day, but they were never considered necessary. They were fascinating additions to life that worked in tandem with the life we were already living. Today, they’re the center of it all and have begun to alter our behaviors in the process. Perhaps that’s why for all the technology I surround myself with, I still engage in activities that seem a little bit retro. I still just like to write stories and paint with my hands, perhaps show up for a radio broadcast. All the while, enjoying moments as they reveal themselves, like when I’m thinking back to memories of a strawberry milkshake.
About the Doodlewash
Da Vinci Paint Co.: Nickel Azo Yellow, Opus (Vivid Pink), Quinacridone Red, Leaf Green, 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!