The Perfect Travel Bag

Day 1 #WorldWatercolorGroup Jack Spade Greene St. Small Messenger Olive Green Orange

It’s September and time for a brand new Doodlewash Adventure! This month is going to be all about favorite travel memories, from trips taken in the past to travels taking place right this moment. And when it comes to travel, I’m definitely one who likes to pack light and not deal with a bunch of luggage. Just one modestly sized suitcase for my checked luggage and this little bag with essentials to bring onto the plane. I found this Jack Spade bag years ago and it was the perfect size, so I’ve never found anything to replace it. I’m not sure if it was popular, because it’s diminutive size genuinely qualifies it as a man purse. But I love it! It’s joined me on business trips, visiting beaches and traveling all over Europe, so the bag itself brings back wonderful memories every time I look at it.

Even though this one is small, just around 8.75″ x  10″ (22.2cm x 25.4cm), it holds my sketchbook, iPad mini, phone, and entire watercolor sketching studio, with a pocket in the back to slide in my passport and tickets. It’s wildly colored bright orange interior, primarily there for a fun look, is actually awesome because you can easily see everything inside, or locate a pencil that rolled to the bottom. I nearly had buyer’s remorse when I bought this as these bags don’t come cheap. But, over 10 years later, it still looks gently worn. This makes me happy as I don’t need a large bag to prove I’m manly, I just want my little bag to carry all my essentials around without weighing me down.

When this little bag came with me on my previous journeys, I hadn’t yet picked up a fountain pen or even thought about painting with watercolor. So, I’m excited to give it a new use in Paris later this month as it transports my sketching supplies for the first time ever. I’m equally excited to doodlewash for the first time while I’m there. Truth be told, I actually brought a sketchbook to Paris with me two years ago, but never even opened it. I guess I was just waiting for watercolor to spark my creative urges. That’s what happens when you find something you truly love. Whether it’s finally finding the perfect medium for you, or sporting a tiny man purse that is likely out of fashion, but still the perfect travel bag for making wonderful new memories.

Join us for the September Doodlewash Adventure: Travel Memories,
Click Here to Learn More!

About the Doodlewash

M. Graham Watercolors:  Azo Green, Permanent Green Pale, Azo Orange, Pyrrol Red, Burnt Sienna, and Ultramarine Blue. Lamy Safari Al Star pen with Platinum Carbon black ink in a 5″ x 8″ 140 lb. (300 gsm) Pentalic Aqua Journal.
Day 1 #WorldWatercolorGroup Jack Spade Greene St. Small Messenger Olive Green Orange
Profile photo of Charlie O'Shields (doodlewash)
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!
30 Comments
  1. Teri C 9 months ago

    It looks like a great bag! I know lots of artists that carry a messenger bag similar to yours. Can’t wait to see what you put in it and what kind of sketches are going to come of it.

    • Author

      Thanks Teri! 😃💕 Glad you liked this! It’s a fabulous bag… smaller than most people like, but it forces you to only carry the essentials, so that’s perfect!

  2. Jodi 9 months ago

    What a lovely bag full of possibilities and adventures!!!

  3. Carol 9 months ago

    You must be a dream to travel with! Me, I need a few more bags :). By the way, I consider that a very hip murse. One of our travel buddies invented a burse (a beer purse), but that story is for another day 😉

    • Author

      hehe… yeah I travel super light so it’s easy. I only carry something that looks like a briefcase for an overnight so it doesn’t look like I plan to spend the night at al! Lol But now you’ve definitely perked my interest… must here the burse story!! LOL 😃

  4. Linda Murray 9 months ago

    Just love your work, Charlie!! You can take something so ordinary and turn it into an awesome work of art. Your skill is amazing!!! Love the orange color- it is such a “happy” color 😊

    • Author

      Awww you’re so sweet you’re making me blush!! Thanks, Linda! 😃💕 That oranage color is the most accurate of this sketch (I lightened the bag color a bit for the illustration). It is a happy color… the reason why I was attracted to this bag I think! hehe

  5. Jacob 9 months ago

    Great stuff! My, that really is a man purse, but a powerful one. I wish my satchel was clever enough to have an orange interior – clearly, size isn’t everything!

    Not long until Ratatouille adventures now, see how quickly it’s come round! 😉

    • Author

      Thanks, Jacob! 😃Yeah… the orange interior is just too cool! Every man should have a good purse I say! hehe There’s so many little pockets and clever zippers in this thing it can actually hold a lot. I’m sure it will be taking the Ratatouille ride with me as well!😃 Lol

  6. Jill Kuhn 9 months ago

    Orange is my favorite color!! 🍊 Sounds like the PERFECT place to keep your art journal for your trip, Charlie!! YAY for you to get to paint on your vacation in Paris!! 🎨💕 Sounds like you will make it a Doodlewash adventure!! 😃 Look forward to it my friend! 🌈

    • Author

      Thanks Jill! 😃💕 I’m soooo excited and also a little afraid as I’ll be well out of the comfort of my little kitchen counter corner! Lol But should be super fun to sketch there and give me something to do during the times when I’m wandering on my own. Can’t wait!!

  7. Fab design, in bag and painting

  8. infotrendynet 9 months ago

    Reblogged this on Trendynet WordPress.

  9. Phil Cooper 9 months ago

    A good bag is like a much loved friend, they’re really important! A great ne Doodlewash adventure Charlie 😊

    • Author

      Thanks, Phil! 😃 That’s soooo true… especially when it’s one that travels to faraway places with you. Just makes it even more special!

  10. Sharon Bonin-Pratt 9 months ago

    What looks empty but is filled with memories – your painting is wonderful. You’ve captured the soft feel of something well used and worn, and I like the shadows on the bag and around it. Can’t wait to see your impressions of Paris, and I’ll remember that all the tools traveled in this little bag.

    • Author

      Thanks so much, Sharon! 😃💕 Yeah, I keep thinking I should look for a new bag, but this one is soooo perfect that I just keep going back to it. Can’t believe in all the times I’ve been to Paris now, I’ve never once cracked a sketchbook. This is going to be so fun!! I’m equally curious to know what I’ll choose to sketch! 😊hehe

  11. Arsty Birdy 9 months ago

    That’s a nice bag indeed! Totally get your point about travelling light because I’m the same too. Well, it sounds like you’re well equipped for your trip to Paris and there’s lots of watercolor gems coming our way soon then 😉 Looking forward to the Paris illustrations! Have a lovely time there!

    • Author

      Thanks so much, Alex! 😃💕 I’m soooo looking forward to sketching on this trip. It will be a blast! Haven’t done a lot of true urban sketching so it will be interesting to see what comes out!

      • Arsty Birdy 9 months ago

        Absolutely! Have fun! Lots of first times and that come with lots of excitement and excitement is cool 😉

  12. memadtwo 9 months ago

    The right bag is essential for all occasions. I’m looking forward to seeing what you show us from Paris! (K)

  13. Sharon Mann 9 months ago

    I will enjoy your travels this month Charlie! Cool knapsack.

  14. Margriet Bierens 9 months ago

    Enjoy Charlie!
    Paris is the place for me!
    Your painting is excellent as usual must I say but still so nice.
    So real!
    Take care!

    • Author

      Thanks so much, Margriet! 😃💕 I’ve been to Paris so many times and wasn’t sketching yet! Will be a very different trip this time for sure! hehe

  15. anniedrawsthings 9 months ago

    I’m a little late to the party, but this month’s challenge is very exciting! I’m going to be doing some travelling this September, so I am very excited to share some travel sketches and see other people’s awesome drawings. Hooray! <3

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