For our prompt of “Tiger” today, I decided to sketch a little tiger cub and pull in some leaves for an extra splash of color. I adore baby animals and particularly the kind that will one day grow very large. They always have these incredibly enormous feet that signal what’s to come. It’s the same with humans in that hands and feet are the first to start and stop growing. On a tiger cub, this gangly look is rather cute. On me, when I was a kid, it was a touch more awkward. But it’s heart-warming to know that one day this little cub will grow into those feet and become a big brave tiger. I was running behind today, and when I realized what the prompt was, I was really daunted. I only had a short amount of time to sketch and tigers seem so complex. So I just jumped in and went for it without thinking too much, which is always my approach when I’m starting to doubt myself. This time, it was both my inner child and my inner tiger that helped me quickly get to a completed sketch.
Today, when Philippe was about to pick me up from work, he realized the car had a flat tire. So, I had to take an Uber home to let the dog out while he dealt with fixing that. I had wanted a glass of wine tonight and contemplated asking my driver if he would mind stopping, but didn’t know if that was proper etiquette. Since we happened to have a bottle of champagne in the fridge, I told Philippe when he finally made it home that we should toast to finding solutions to problems. He looked and me sideways and said, “You just really want a glass of champagne now, don’t you?” to which I said, “Yes!” This was one of those weeks where Thursday felt like it should be Friday all day long. The kind that drags on for one extra day when it seems like the weekend should have already arrived. But, as soon as I started painting I felt recharged. It’s honestly magic. No matter how rushed or stressed I feel when I get home, all of that goes away the moment I put a brush to paper. Sure, the champagne was a nice bonus (yes, Philippe agreed to my plan of questionable logic), but the act of making something is the best thing of all.
This is why I love my sketching habit. I’m not sure how I would have transformed my day without it. I think I would have been a touch grumpy or still feeling overwhelmed. And yet, having one more thing to DO, which is make a sketch of some kind, could easily seem like too much to bear. But, for me, sketching is its own thing. It’s on a completely different level than the other things I feel like I have to do in my life. This is one of those fabulously unique things that I simply always want to do, and doing it makes me feel so happy. But there was an extra layer today that included a bit of fear. The subject matter felt far too complex for my harried brain to handle. Yet, I’m the guy who’s spent four and half years bravely sketching everything imaginable. Some sketches are better than others, to be sure, but I’ve already proven to myself that I can indeed sketch anything. So, why the doubt? Well, I’m simply human, after all. But, in my heart, I always try to approach life with all of the courage of one little tiger.
About the Doodlewash
Da Vinci Paint Co.: Hansa Yellow Medium, Cobalt Turquoise, Indigo, Terra Cotta, Indigo and Ultramarine (Green Shade). Staedtler Pigment Liners in an A5 Hahnemühle Watercolour Book. Want to purchase a print of this doodlewash? Click here!