GUEST ARTIST: “Carrying On The Family Tradition” by Sophia Czarkowski

Zebra Watercolor by Sophia Czarkowski - Doodlewash

My name is Sophia and I’m from Yeppoon in Central Queensland, Australia. I grew up in Brisbane where my creativity and love of all things art was fostered and encouraged by my family including my late grandmothers, Lavinia, an abstract artist and Nina, a creator. Both Nanna and Gran shared my passion and encouraged me to explore it by sharing their knowledge and skills in art, sewing, crotchet, cooking and mosaics to name a few.

Watercolor by Sophia Czarkowski - Doodlewash

I have always had a love of creating and experimenting and over the years my creative endeavours have included sewing, scrapbooking, card making, painting, jewelery making, mosaics and the list goes on.

I recall of the years, some of my proudest moments were when my creations were upgraded from the fridge to everyday use or display. My Gran and Nanna fondly used coasters, bags and quilts I had made for them for many many years. My parents proudly displayed a triptych painting of mine above their bed for years even when the colours of the painting didn’t match their décor and my sister displays some of my artwork in her son’s room.

After many years of paper crafts I turned back to my love of acrylic painting and began painting at every opportunity. The love grew and spread and became a passion. Not so long ago, I was gifted a watercolour set, and with this, endless opportunities to create opened up.

I work full time but use nights and weekends to practice, perfect and create. I draw inspiration from the world around me, my family and friends – the friend that cooks eggplant parmigiana, my sister sharing a precious moment with her son, my friend’s love of owls, my own love of cactus and animals. I love to create artwork that brings joy to me as well as others and I generally opt for bright colours.

I use reference photos to sketch out work and often this is the longest part of the creative process as drawing and sketching are not my fortes. Once I have sketched out a design, the painting process commences. For watercolours, I typically use Arches 300gsm paper and I prefer smooth or hot pressed, however, I have been known to paint on whatever I can find.

I find the most economical way to source paper is to buy large sheets then cut them to size – generally to 12x12inches, A4 or A5 depending on the project. I use Winsor & Newton Masking Fluid as well as Micron pens and the gelly roll white pens to help with both outlines and highlighting/shading.

Horse Watercolor by Sophia Czarkowski - Doodlewash

In terms of watercolours, I use QOR Watercolours and Prima Watercolour Confections and I make as many colour charts as I possibly can to ensure I best utilise the colours I have. My most surprising colour mix and my current favourite is Dioxazine Purple and Yellow Ochre. I love the soft muted colours that are created with this mix. I recently also discovered metallic watercolours and I instantly fell in love and I have been adding metallic accents to nearly everything I do lately. If you haven’t tried metallic watercolours I highly recommend them!

Hummingbird Watercolor by Sophia Czarkowski - Doodlewash

I am always on the lookout for new ways to be creative, experiment and to integrate art into every day and I have recently been experimenting with Prismacolor Pencils and Scratchboard Art thanks to my family who always seems to know what arty presents to buy me. I recently completed a scratchboard piece with two zebras, that I finished off with watercolour for shading, which shows the versatility of watercolours across many media.

Sophia Czarkowski
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Recommended5 recommendationsPublished in Featured Artists

Creator of Doodlewash® and founder of World Watercolor Month™ (July) and World Watercolor Group™. 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!

25 Comments
  1. Rod Fletcher 4 months ago

    Thank you for sharing your intriguing and colourful work.

  2. bahelberg1 4 months ago

    This is truly inspirational creative art work, doodlewash!! Love the Zebra! The “pieces” (no pun intended; well, maybe) “horse” and “bird” are wonderfully pleasing in their creative use of pieces. Love, love, love them!! What great heritage you’ve been able to “draw” from; wow, the puns abound, after all. 🙂 Really, though, your work is so enjoyable and oozes tons of talent on your part! I relate to your life style, also. Work by day, do your ‘real’ best work by night. I did that for years with my writing before I retired…

    • bahelberg1 4 months ago

      Sorry, my comment was a bit confusing, Charlie! I was referring to your featured artist’s life style and works after my first four sentences. Your blog is commendable in its motivation to share the work of others!!

      • Author
        Charlie O'Shields 4 months ago

        Aww thanks so much! So happy you’re enjoying Doodlewash! 🙂 Yeah, it’s really just OUR blog! Happy to share the space with my fellow artists!

        • bahelberg1 4 months ago

          You’re welcome, Charlie! Sharing our talents and the arts is the best on WordPress!. I love it !

          • Sophia Czarkowski 4 months ago

            Thank you so much for your kind words and I love the puns 😊 I appreciate your support.

          • bahelberg1 4 months ago

            My pleasure, Sophia!

  3. Sharon Bonin-Pratt 4 months ago

    Sophia, your art story is a delight to read, and your work is beautiful. I especially love the creative watercolor drips that enhance your paintings.

    • Sophia Czarkowski 4 months ago

      Thank you Sharon. I love creating drips or splatter in my work. It’s so much fun!

  4. Les Grindey 4 months ago

    your work is beautiful . I loved the bird It reminds me of stain glass amazing

    • Sophia Czarkowski 4 months ago

      Thank you Les. I do love geometric animals.

  5. Sharon Nolfi 4 months ago

    Thank you for sharing your creative journey and lovely art.

    • Sophia Czarkowski 4 months ago

      Thank you Sharon 😊

  6. Sandra Strait 4 months ago

    Sophia, your work is so colorful and lively! There is always something unexpected about each work that draws you back to look at it again and again.

    • Sophia Czarkowski 4 months ago

      Oh wow Sandra, I really appreciate your comment. Thank you 😊

  7. Barbara 4 months ago

    May I please have permission to use the horse picture to paint it? Thank you.

    • Sophia Czarkowski 4 months ago

      Barbara, I’m okay with you using the concept and applying your own twist to it but I’d rather you didn’t copy it unless of course it is only for personal use.

      • Barb Munday 4 months ago

        Thanks, I would be attempting to do it in acrylics and yes I would attempt to put my own twist on it. Thank you.

  8. June Hadaway 4 months ago

    Very colorful. Beautiful work. Thank you for sharing.

    • Sophia Czarkowski 4 months ago

      Thank you June!

  9. LoriCtoo 4 months ago

    So inspiring, so beautiful!

    • Sophia Czarkowski 4 months ago

      Thank you 😊

  10. Janneke Booister 4 months ago

    Your work is so great! I bet you have lots and lots of fun creating these paintings – I would! 🙂

    • Sophia Czarkowski 4 months ago

      Thanks Janneke, I certainly do!

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