During my life, I’ve often found myself being a bit of a “shrinking violet,” our prompt for today. I’ve never been a fan of large crowds and prefer spending time with just a handful of people or, even better, one very good friend. This shyness is why I only appeared via a podcast last year for the first time, and on video just a couple of weeks ago for the first time. The latter was a huge step for me, and took almost four years of blogging daily before I finally made the leap. But, I’ve never been shy about posting my art and ideas. I don’t think any of us should ever be shy about that. Those are things made far more valuable when shared with others. When it comes to posting art, the biggest hurdle is getting that inner critic to stop babbling on about what’s wrong with everything. Everything we make could be better, but what’s really better in the end? I choose to think in terms of what’s best. And the best thing we can ever DO is show up and share what we create. It’s that simple. As simple as this little flower sketched in the 15 minutes that I had available to make something today. A flower that didn’t exist 15 minutes before that. I find to be the best thing in the world!
As a kid, I battled shyness when it came to talking to people that I didn’t know very well. It’s why you’d find me writing and doodling much of the time. I had ideas I wanted to get out, but I didn’t always know how to express them. When I was in high school and college, I did the seemingly unthinkable thing of becoming a stage actor. Something one wouldn’t expect for a shy person. But, that wasn’t me on stage. It was a character that I created, and not really me at all. So, I could be anyone I wanted and had no shyness about appearing in front of thousands of people. But today, I’m just me. The real, happily flawed and sometimes ridiculous me. I’m not a character at all anymore. So, this journey has been an enlightening one indeed. It’s why I was so slow to show up on video. I mean, it’s the real Charlie, without a persona to hide behind so I was admittedly a bit nervous. But that’s the wonderful thing about a “DO” mentality. It pushes us out of our comfort zone and onto the next phase of our journey.
I’ve got lots of things planned for the next phase of my own journey. More books, and yes, more videos are all on the list. Though I have no firm idea of when each will happen, I know that like all the things on this adventure, they’ll happen at just the right time. And like everything done with pure passion, it’s going to be a lot of fun in the process. Thanks so much for your kind words and encouragement along the way! It’s helped me come out of my shell and show up with more confidence that I actually do have something of value to share. The truth is, I sincerely think that we all do. Whether we’re just at the start of our creative journey, in the middle of figuring it all out, or a master in our field. Our stories matter. They are the bits of us that connect with the remarkably similar bits of others. The world is always somehow a bit clearer when viewed through someone else’s eyes. In the stories of others, we’re reminded of what we already know, but it makes life more comforting to discover we’re not alone. So, I thank you, from the bottom of my heart for taking a moment out of your day each day to read these stories from the shy guy.
About the Doodlewash
Da Vinci Paint Co.: Opus (Vivid Pink), Aureolin, Leaf Green, and Cobalt Blue. 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!
Creator of Doodlewash®, founder of World Watercolor Month (July), World Watercolor Group™, and host of the Sketching Stuff Podcast. 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!