Today is World Heart Day, which is a day where everyone in the world is invited and encouraged to make a promise to live a healthier lifestyle to prevent heart disease. This, of course, includes eating better and getting more exercise, but it’s also about living a happier more positive life. I definitely think art counts as something very good for the heart on so many levels. It’s been proven that making and even simply viewing art has a profound and wondrous effect on our immune system and overall mental health. So, yes, taking the time to make art is a truly wonderful thing that you can do for yourself and taking a moment to share it is a wonderful thing you can do for others. It’s a perfect circle of positivity that is the very reason I continue to show up and create each and every day. Each time I feel rushed or busy and think that I might not have time to create a little something, I ask myself what on earth would make me feel as good? And why on earth would I skip doing something I love? I can’t think of a good reason to miss my chance to create, so you’ll still find me showing up daily, with a very happy heart.
Shown in this little doodlewash is my actual current paint box and palette. A tiny and messy little studio that I perch on the edge of my kitchen counter, where I quickly make a little something each night before dinner, often moving my paints out of the way just as Philippe is setting down a plate of food. After dinner, I scan whatever I made and write a little something to go with it here while often finishing my glass of wine. Whatever stress I might have felt in the moments before this little ritual completely disappears by the time I’m done. The effect is so profound and effective that on a truly stressful day it feels a bit like I’m a computer that just got freshly rebooted. All of the extra little bits that didn’t matter at all are purged and I’m left with a clean slate, filled with just the good and necessary bits of life. While I do hope that what I share is something enjoyable, the primary goal is to always be sure I myself am enjoying the process. If that happens, it will inevitably show in whatever I make.
I’ve never really thought about where this journey is leading me, or placed any pressure on myself to achieve a particular outcome. The sheer act of DOing is still the thing I love most and the reason I show up. Though I know if one’s goal is to become a full-time artist, that road comes with a bit of stress along the way. That’s why you’ll find me sharing this space with artists all over the world. I hope to help promote them and be part of making those dreams come true. And I personally just hope to inspire as many people as possible to pick up that pen and draw or that brush to paint something. While there are lots of “how to” articles on art and many wonderful examples on this very site from other artists, I prefer to write “why to” stories when it comes to creating. So, my little rambling blog posts are a bit different than what you’ll find on most art sites. But I hope that each little story that each little doodlewash brings to my mind has something in it that makes you consider your own journey in art and life. A simple reminder that no matter what we hope to accomplish, we’re always better when we work together and approach everything from the heart.
About the Doodlewash
Da Vinci Paint Co.: Aureolin, Azo Yellow, Vermilion, Benzimida Orange, Quinacridone Red, Opus (Vivid Pink), Cobalt Turquoise, Ultramarine Blue, Yellow Ochre, Leaf Green, Terra Cotta, and Indigo. 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!
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!