For our prompt of “Cycle” today, I opted for a motorcycle, simply because I’ve never sketched one before and wanted to try. I chose a bit of a vintage model and then realized that motorcycles are ridiculously complex. I used just three colors, dotted in details that I saw, and others are a bit invented to hopefully create the illusion of an actual motorcycle, though I’m rather sure this one wouldn’t last long if it were taken out on the open road. I’m truly not sure all of the wires even connect. I’ve never owned a motorcycle, but back when I was in art school one of my best friends did. She used to take me for rides, and once we rode out to the country early in the morning to watch the sun rise. We were only on unpopulated backroads so I found the experience really memorable and magical. Later she would take me on a tour via a highway and the feeling of bugs hitting your skin at over 65 miles per hour was a far less pleasurable experience. I remember squealing and screaming in a most embarrassing fashion most of the trip. This was the first and last time she ever invited me to join her for a ride that was anything over 30 miles per hour. For my own part, being one who prefers vehicles with walls, I still felt rather daring the entire time. And it felt great!
I’ve never been what one would call a thrill-seeker. But, I always find it thrilling to experience something that I wouldn’t normally DO. When it came to motorcycles, I would have never even ridden on one had I not been coaxed by a good friend. That experience really stuck with me. And perhaps, more importantly, I remember the feeling of doing something that I never would have done if left to my own inclinations. There’s quite a difference between keeping yourself safe and just “playing it safe.” I often find myself leaning toward an option that feels the most comfortable. Indeed, when I choose something to create each day, my first choice is something that I’ve practiced and that I know I can sketch quite well. So, even if I choose a beloved subject matter, I opt for a difficult perspective or something that will challenge me a bit. Or, in the case of today, force myself to sketch something for the very first time. It’s an interesting thing, as when I started, everything was a first so I didn’t have to worry at all. Now, there’s a level of skill that I’ve expressed, so trying something that I’ve never once sketched feels just a bit daring.
And it’s so much fun! Join me! If you’ve been waiting to create something that you simply think is beyond you at this point, then by all means DO it! Or, as my inner child would say, I DARE you to DO it! What I’ve learned on this little art journey is that while I adore it if people love what I make, I adore it most when I love making it in the first place. I think that’s the secret to building a daily art habit. As much as I’m certainly sharing a bit of performance art each day with my doodlewashes and words, it’s still a very personal approach. I make what my heart tells me to make and let my heart share whatever words it wants in the accompanying post. One would think after all of this time I would have started editing myself or attempting to craft something more eloquent. But instead, I just make a little something and then ramble on as the words come to mind. For me, this is my art form. I’m not sure what anyone would call it or if there’s even a name for what I do. What I know is that it makes me very happy. I adore seeing an image appear in my little sketchbook and am always surprised by the words it inspires. Perhaps, I’m too squeamish to hop on a motorcycle and hit the highway, but I still always feel the thrill of living life by riding the open road.
About the Doodlewash
Da Vinci Paint Co.: Aureolin, Vermilion, and Indigo (my “Vintage” Trio!).. 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!