The Best View Of All

Day 9 - The Best View Of All - Bird In A Tree - #doodlewashJune2018 Doodlewash

When I was young, I could sometimes be found climbing trees, our art challenge prompt today. This was long before I developed my current fear of heights, of course. It was back during that wonderful time before we learn to fear things. The house I grew up in had a large tree outside with a space between the bottom branches where you could also simply sit. But this space equally could provide a head start to venturing out upon one of those branches and climb higher. I didn’t get very high, not because I was afraid, but because I was horrible at climbing trees. I lacked much of the athleticism of my friends and my arms just didn’t work that way. But, anything above the ground was still an improvement. The view was very different there and I imagined myself to be like a bird, spying on everyone that passed by. I was only a little ways above those who passed and far bigger than a bird, so I was the worst spy ever, but I felt like I was invisible. Like I’d managed to see something incredible that nobody else had seen before.

I could sit or lay on that branch for quite some time, simply looking at this incredible new world that I’d discovered. It was, indeed, simply my own yard and house. Mundane things I’d seen every single day to the point of memory. But a slight shift in perspective made everything look vastly different. Nothing had changed at all, but suddenly I could see things I’d missed before. Like that crack in the cement patio that I could now see clearly resembled a monkey eating a banana, or maybe a man playing the trumpet. I wasn’t sure which, but it didn’t really matter. It was just wonderful to see my own world transformed into something new. This is the same feeling that most of us report when we start creating art for the first time, or return to it after many years. Each little glint of light and shadow is amplified and we become hyperaware and see things we’d managed to overlook before. This is indeed why you can always find me sketching stuff each day.

There’s little chance you’d find me climbing a tree like I did back then. Heights make me squeamish and I’m far happier on the ground. But, thankfully, I don’t have to climb trees anymore to see what that little boy saw. An ordinary world turned extraordinary simply through careful observation. I guess this is why I’ve tried to get everyone on the planet painting daily with me. I think the world is a far more interesting place when filled with different points of view. No matter how many people look at the same thing, each person will see it a bit differently. Like those days when I had time to lay in the grass and simply stare up at the clouds. My friends and I would point out shapes and then playfully argue over what they actually were. And no matter what we chose, the best part was, we were never wrong. It was our belief that made it true. So, whether we’re high in a tree or standing safely on the ground, it’s indeed the way we optimistically choose to look at the world, that can provide us with the best view of all.

About the Doodlewash

Da Vinci Paint Co.: Yellow Ochre, Benzimida Orange, and Cobalt Blue. Lamy Al-Star Safari Fountain Pen with sepia 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!
 Day 9 - The Best View Of All - Bird In A Tree - #doodlewashJune2018 Doodlewash
Recommended4 recommendationsPublished in By Charlie

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!

22 Comments
  1. Sandra Strait 4 months ago

    Love your perspective on perspective – and your bird painting fits into that perfectly. So perfect perspective persuavely done.

    • Author
      Charlie O'Shields 4 months ago

      Thanks so much, Sandra! 😃💕hehe… for the compliment and the lovely alliteration!

  2. Sharon Nolfi 4 months ago

    Another wonderful childhood memory, lovingly told. Yes, even a low perch in a tree changes everything. And yes, we can choose joy.

  3. Mary Roff 4 months ago

    Nothing quite like the lure of or the view from a branch up in a tree.

  4. June Hadaway 4 months ago

    Looks like a cedar wax wing maybe? Lovely colors and drawing. You are right, people do see things differently and that is a good thing. Some see detail, others don’t. Kind of reminds me of those that paint caricatures. They only see the thing that stands out most like big teeth or large ears. Lol

    • Author
      Charlie O'Shields 4 months ago

      Thanks, June! 😃💕hehe… I only wish I could paint caricatures! It looks SO fun! I can’t even paint people properly. I’m not sure what bird this is actually, as the reference didn’t say.

  5. SnehLata Maheshwari 4 months ago

    Story of a kid lie ,liked very much
    And beautiful 🥀 bird. thanks

  6. Lisa 4 months ago

    That is so true! I’ve taken to doing a November Thankfulness project wherein in I write and post something that I am thankful for every day of the month. And even though I’m already a happy optimist, my mood still gets a boost when I write these happy thoughts down.

    • Author
      Charlie O'Shields 4 months ago

      I agree! Even optimists can do with a little extra boost every now and again! 😃💕

  7. Sharon Bonin-Pratt 4 months ago

    Another very thoughtful post about a little boy who pays attention to the world his way, and a lovely painting of a bird – a yellow vireo? They look like such gentle birds.

    • Author
      Charlie O'Shields 4 months ago

      Thanks, Sharon! 😃💕 I’m totally not sure what bird this is. I grabbed a free reference quickly on this one. Now I’m curious! hehe Could be that!

  8. Jacob 4 months ago

    Pretty, delicate bird. You know, I don’t think I, nor my friends, ever climbed trees. Possibly we were discouraged from trying. Perhaps we should make a pact to try that too, if we’re fortunate enough to meet 😉 though given my performance on climbing walls, it could be interesting!

    • Author
      Charlie O'Shields 4 months ago

      Thanks, Jacob! 😃💕 LOL… I think we should definitely make it a pact to climb a tree as well! I’ve never tried the climbing wall thing… it’s like all the climbing without the good view. 😉

      • Jacob 4 months ago

        Haha, I quite agree! We had one at high school and they made us climb it again and again in PE. I would rather have been playing football, and that’s saying something!

        • Author
          Charlie O'Shields 4 months ago

          Wow… see that makes you already far more sporty than me. Though I did play what we call “soccer” and enjoyed it in the moment. I never developed an interest. 😊

          • Jacob 4 months ago

            If I were to tell you my high school was a ‘specialist sports college’, I’d sound overbearingly sporty. I’ll omit the facts that I hated PE, was in the lowest ability set and left proud of my E grade, bringing the snooty sports rep down 😉

          • Author
            Charlie O'Shields 4 months ago

            Brilliant! Well… shall we shall. played? LOL 😉

  9. smzang 4 months ago

    You always soar, Charlie.

    the nicest thing is that you share the view.

    Thank you!

    • Author
      Charlie O'Shields 4 months ago

      Aww thanks, Sarah! 😃💕 And the most wonderful thing is that you share yours. Thank you my friend!

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