Today’s prompt of “Rose-Colored Glasses” fits me quite well as in its idiomatic meaning it refers to pure optimism and the ability to always see things in a positive light. This is pretty much how I am all of the time. For the literal expression of that I had to add in a rose-colored drink to reflect in my normally clear blue glasses. As a kid, I remember there was a country song in the late 70’s by John Conlee called Rose-Colored Glasses. I remember this because my dad used to play it quite a lot along with lots of other current country hits. The song isn’t, however, very optimistic and more about heartbreak as that’s usually the theme of any good old country song. The last line says, rose-colored glasses “Show only the beauty, ‘Cause they hide all the truth.” A depressingly pessimistic view in my mind. My own rose-colored glasses are certainly show only beauty, but it’s because they actually show me the truth. Optimism is a wonderful way to see the world clearly. Nearly all of the time, when I feel a bit of stress, whatever is bothering me becomes much less bothersome when I stop and truly consider it for what it is. With just the raw truth and none of the silly worries I’m adding in my head, everything seems just fine each and every time.
Yeah, I would obviously never be able to write a good country song, but I’m fine being an optimist instead. It allows me to get more things done by removing the worry of things that don’t really matter. It’s interesting to me that whenever I truly stop to truly examine something that’s bothering me, it’s never as bad as it seemed at first. When I was younger I think I tended to be a bit more pessimistic, but as I’ve gotten older, I’ve realized just how unimportant things that once bothered me actually are. But, most of all, I finally realized that I have a choice in the matter. Being happy and positive is not a personality trait, it’s a deliberate choice of how I want to live. So, I choose happy! Who wouldn’t really? In my optimistic attitude, I believe in all of us and our power to accomplish whatever it is that we want to do next. That’s why I have a “DO” manifesto that I created when I first started this blog back in 2015. And, it’s no accident that if you re-read it and apply it to life and not art, it works just as well. Well, if you need to, you can substitute “keep doodling” for “keep dabbling” at the end. To me, they’re the same as dabbling means to participate in something in a casual way, and I consider myself a casual artist.
Sure, I want to learn more things and to improve what I create. I just don’t want to add a layer of worry to the journey. When I first started posting, I was so enthusiastic about this new watercolor sketching thing I’d discovered that I completely forgot to worry about whether or not it was good enough to post. I posted every single little thing I made like I was a child handing a masterpiece to my mom. Not many people showed up at first, so it wasn’t until later when I started to wonder if what I made was “good enough” to post. Suddenly, as I was getting better at my art, there was an audience. This was super fun, as it made me feel great to think that people would actually show up to see my art and read my stories. But, it was also terrifying. There were now more people to disappoint. So, what did I DO? Nothing differently at all. I just kept doing what I loved and knew that my loving it was all that was needed for it to be deemed “good enough.” Art isn’t about pleasing others, it’s about pleasing ourselves in a way that attracts others and makes them feel our same joy. Or, yes, angst, passion, fear, regret, sorrow, and an endless array of less optimistic emotions. No matter what, it’s simply the start of a conversation, and I just choose to start mine while looking through my rose-colored glasses.
About the Doodlewash
Da Vinci Paint Co.: Nickel Azo Yellow, Leaf Green, Opus (Vivid Pink), Quinacridone Red, Cobalt Turquoise, and Cobalt Blue. Lamy Al-Star Safari Fountain Pen with black 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!