Until The Cows Come Home

Cow Face Barn Farm Inktober Watercolor 2019

For our Doodlewash prompt of “Barn” today, I opted for a little red barn and a cow heading out to pasture using sepia ink for the base drawing. As for the Inktober prompt of “Build,” this one does show a “Build-ing” so I guess that fits. I wasn’t terribly inspired by that one. But I did have a lot of fun playing with perspective and sketching a funny cow face. When I was a kid and visiting my grandparent’s farm I loved watching the cows. I remember the occasional curious cow who would poke its head over the fence to greet me. When I was small, those heads looked even more gigantic. And I adored the pastoral scene filled with rolling hills, dotted with various wildflowers, and seemingly endless trails and winding pathways. There always seemed to be new things to explore and DO there! At the time, I just found it all really fun. But now, as I look back, I feel extremely lucky to have had that experience in life. These days, I’m always in the busy city and I miss my days of adventure and exploration on the farm. So, it’s been fun this month to push myself to fearlessly try new things, just like when I was a kid.

For this sketch, I used a fountain pen with sepia ink, made “new” simply by swapping out the nib for a broad one rather than my usual extra fine tip. I’m really enjoying the broad nib and still sort of figuring things out as I go. For instance, I want these ink sketches to stand alone so I drew in clouds, something I’d never usually do, preferring to let watercolor do all the work there. But I rather liked the effect.     Day 5 - Cow Face Barn Farm Inktober 2019
This month feels shiny and new to me. I’m realizing now how I hadn’t been taking a lot of chances. If there was something in my head, I would often pass it up to try something that would be much easier to sketch instead. I told myself it was due to a lack of time, but that wasn’t really true. I’ve not spent any extra time this month on these latest sketches. In fact, some, like this one, have gone a bit faster than usual because many of the elements are from my imagination and memory. I’m using multiple references and composing scenes on the fly and it’s a total joy!

Indeed, I’m also rushing a bit today as we have to head to a wedding very soon and I have yet to even figure out what I’m going to wear. I have to sort of create a costume that looks a touch formal out of my wardrobe that consists entirely of casual clothing. I don’t enjoy gatherings of more than eight people, and that’s usually the only kind that ever requires more than jeans and t-shirt. I think I’ll be able to throw something together and make myself presentable, but it will be a last minute dash to the finish, much like my sketches. But I like things casual and leisurely, just like an afternoon spent watching animals on the farm. And, I’m rather sure that Philippe and I will be both among the first to arrive and the first to leave as usual. That’s just the way we are, and our friends are not shocked or surprised by this point. We always have more fun that way and come home less exhausted from all of the interaction. Getting just our little party fix and letting those who actually enjoy these things take over from that point, and party until the cows come home.

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About the Doodlewash

Da Vinci Paint Co.: Gold Ochre, Vermilion, Quinacridone Red, Leaf Green, Terra Cotta, Cobalt Turquoise, and Ultramarine (Green Shade). Lamy Al-Star Safari Fountain Pen (Broad Nib) 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!
Cow Face Barn Farm Inktober Watercolor 2019 Sketchbook Detail
Recommended6 recommendationsPublished in By Charlie
27 Comments
  1. Silvia Elena 1 month ago

    Wow!!! I loved!!!

  2. Lisa Ann Ulibarri 1 month ago

    Beautiful!!! Love your cow!!! I used to live a bit more rural a couple of years ago it was fun to see the cows right across the street 🙂

    • Author
      Charlie O'Shields 1 month ago

      Thanks so much, Lisa! 😃💕Hehe… seeing cows across the street sounds like a wonderful thing indeed!

  3. Sandra Strait 1 month ago

    I’m almost always the first to arrive and leave myself. To the point where my friends often are disgruntled if I’m not because they know I’ll help get things ready and they kind of depend on it.

    • Author
      Charlie O'Shields 1 month ago

      hehe! Yep! Same here! 😃💕 If I’m not a tad early I usually get a text! hehe

  4. Mary Roff 1 month ago

    Love that cow!!! I have similar memories of time spent on my grandparents farm. Why does it seems so difficult, as adults, to recapture that sense of awe and adventure?

    • Author
      Charlie O'Shields 1 month ago

      Thanks, Mary! 😃💕Yeah, I loved those times spent on the farm. And as much I talk about and push trying to recapture that sense of awe and adventure, it always remains a challenge as an adult. We just think we know and have seen too much… so we end up less likely to be amazed. 😉

  5. Karen Fortier 1 month ago

    Love your sketch Charlie. Animals are not something that I sketch often but should. Hope that the wedding goes off fantastically and I hope you find great conversations!

    • Author
      Charlie O'Shields 1 month ago

      Thanks so much, Karen! 😃💕The wedding was wonderful in the end! We had a great time. And you should totally sketch animals… it’s so much fun!

  6. Zertab Quaderi 1 month ago

    Beautiful memories of grandparents’ farm, Charlie 😀. Love that cow!

  7. Lisa 1 month ago

    Since the farmer next door passed away, I no longer get my cow fix. I loved going out to garden and having those curious creatures trot over to the fence to see what I was doing. When I was a kid we raised a few steers on our little farm for meat. Dad didn’t let us kids get attached to them because he knew we would cry and carry on when they were sent to slaughter. One was even named T-Bone as a reminder.

    I hope you had fun at the wedding. It’s been a while since I attended one. In fact the last one was my best friend who did a renewal of her vows which technically was their legal wedding after the laws were finally changed. I didn’t realize how much time had passed until I saw side by side photos of both weddings and noticed how many more lines there were on our faces and silver in our hair.

    • Author
      Charlie O'Shields 1 month ago

      Oh, your cow fix sounded awesome, Lisa! 😃💕 I would miss getting that as well. And yeah, I’m realizing photos have a crazy way of showing just how much time has passed. hehe… In my mind though, I’m still as young as I feel!

  8. Loan Anh Pham 1 month ago

    Sepia ink worked very well in your ink sketch, and to be joy in watercolor sketch , Charlie. Yeah, I love moments watching the cow walking . To me, when the cow has walked along the beach 🌹

    • Author
      Charlie O'Shields 1 month ago

      Thanks so much, Loan! 😃💕 Glad you liked this! And a cow walking along the beach sounds like a lovely thing indeed!

  9. LoriCtoo 1 month ago

    I love the sepia! It isn’t so drastic. Cute cow! Hope you survived the big shingdig. Funny about first to arrive. I always rather be the first and let the crowd come in, rather than making a grand entrance. Must be our personality type….introverts??

    • Author
      Charlie O'Shields 1 month ago

      Thanks, Lori! 😃💕 Yeah, I always use sepia when I want it to blend more and let the watercolor shine. This month, though, it’s mostly black for Inktober! hehe And yay to introverts! It’s way better to have the crowd descend upon you than descend upon it! 😉 lol

  10. dalegreenearts 1 month ago

    I always loved cows and I adore this sketch.

  11. Joe Domeier 1 month ago

    Wonderful depth of field here Charlie!

    • Author
      Charlie O'Shields 1 month ago

      Thanks so much, Joe! 😃💕 I’m trying to branch out a bit and try new things in honor of Inktober! 😉 Glad you enjoyed this!

  12. Linda Calverley 1 month ago

    Love the perspective.

  13. shawnthompsonart 1 month ago

    I really like the foreshortening on your cow!

  14. smzang 1 month ago

    I love those closing lines…the right way to party!

    Your pen and inks are super.

    • Author
      Charlie O'Shields 1 month ago

      Thanks so much! 😃💕 I’m adoring pen and ink this month more than ever. And learning a lot as I go!

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