Philippe and I were shopping recently and saw a red lantern that we almost purchased, but decided we didn’t have anywhere to put it. We don’t decorate for all of the seasons, but we go a little nuts each Christmas, always adding a little something more to the décor each year. I really wanted the lantern and told myself it was only one little light, after all. But, it’s true, we don’t have enough room for the decorations we’ve already acquired and have to make tough choices each year as to what gets displayed. Even so, my inner child was once again screaming with delight and it was still on my mind. Though the lights on the tree are certainly dazzling, the warm light of candles always makes my heart happy. I have to marvel at the effect that one little spec of light can create. Just a single lit candle can fill a room with so much love and possibility. Though we have some real tapered candles and votives, many of our candles are now controlled by a remote. Even still, a flickering speck of light always creates a perfectly wonderful mood.
Actually, we really adore our remote controlled candles, which are Luminara. They flicker like the real thing and create a beautiful glow. We bought a set for my mother a couple of years ago and when we visited her recently, we saw she had purchased several more. In fact, she now has far more than we do, which I was just a touch jealous about, but thrilled she enjoyed them so much. And I was once more struck by just how something so small can make life more wonderful. This is how I feel each and every day when I sit down to sketch and paint a little something for these posts. My doodlewashes are not grand paintings and they are always done very quickly. I enjoy that speck of a moment each day. I realized early on that I don’t have the patience to spend days on a single painting. This initially bothered me, and I was distraught thinking that I would never be a true artist. But, instead of worrying too much about it, I just used my flaw to define my style. My mad dash doodlewashes created a look that was definitely me, in 45 minutes or less.
I fully realize that I don’t follow the expected patterns as an artist blogger as well. From the beginning, I’ve talked about life instead of technique, and chose to inspire rather than teach, by simply showing up each day. Thankfully, I’m joined by fabulous friends who write wonderful reviews and tutorials and I can passionately promote all of the art teachers who have inspired me along the way! One of the things I’ve learned on this art journey is that you have to trust your own flame. No matter what you see others doing, if you yourself don’t feel a passion for that, you should follow your heart instead. Sure, once again, this is my inner child talking, but it’s something I truly believe. I’ve never been one of the cool kids, but I’m always honest and true to myself. And, as it turns out, this is a quality we all admire in each other. Each of us provide a unique and beautiful glow in this world. My holiday wish is that each of us will take just a moment, by that glow of a candle, and celebrate those unique traits that make us who we truly are. In this busy and overcrowded world, it can seem daunting to ever be noticed as an artist. But, I’ve learned that if you just keep showing up, you can be that candle to provide a bit of happiness and joy. We don’t have to be the most famous artist in the world. Sometimes, a world of hope can come from just one little light.
About the Doodlewash
Da Vinci Paint Co.: Quinacridone Red, Vermilion, Aureolin, Terra Cotta, 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!