I have recently joined a doodle-group on Facebook where amateur and professional artists are invited to compete for the fun of it doing doodle shapes and 4-minute doodles.
So let me share a few of the doodles I have shared with them.
I have been enjoying the doodle challenges as it helps to doodle when the world is dropping poopy bombs on your head through misfortunes of many kinds.
Here’s my doodle shape that hasn’t made a video yet.
I joined an art challenge Facebook group that regularly pits doodlers against each other with four minutes to doodle in and a place to post the results. And we do it for absolutely no prizes or titles or even ranking, just for the love of doodling. So here is a recent 4-minute doodle by Mickey posted on that selfsame super-silly group;
If you are having trouble believing that I dragon-doodled this in only 4 minutes, please notice that that the left side of the dragon’s face is clearly the area I was rushing to complete as the time was running out. I doodled this in black ink with a ballpoint pen. I timed it. And I have drawn numerous dragons before. So you could rationalize that I really worked for hours upon hours to be able to do this four minute doodle.
I began this journey in 2013 as author of Catch a Falling Star, using a blog to promote the book at the prompting of my publisher. They basically set the blog up for me and then handed me the steering wheel. And I drove right into the deep pool of creative liquid filled with my own writing, artwork, and goofy thinking.
One thing that was critical was adding pictures, especially my own colored-pencil art, to the blog. And so, I had to start converting my portfolios full of colorful scribbling. I bought a digital camera and started my quest to reproduce in digital form the most important parts of my soul.
Here is an example of one of those first reproductions done in sunlight with my digital camera.
It was acceptable enough to post, but look at the unicorn’s muzzle. Do you not see the glare? And how about the overall graying of the picture even at the most careful aperture settings? Not to mention the camera’s penchant for posting the date in the corner if I don’t ask it not to politely enough.
This one is so much better, having managed the settings better, having bought a 100 watt and a 300 watt light to light it better, and having practiced repeatedly.
This one is even a little better. It is done on my cell phone camera with a carefully selected and tested app that retains and enhances color so much more easily than the digital camera.
It is entirely possible you are looking at these three digital images and not seeing any difference. But the differences are noticeable to me. And I am proud of the progress I have made in four years, even if it is all in my stupid old head.
A simple, black-and-white drawing done in pen and ink. Elegant. Easy to understand. At least, if you can get past the weird little kid inside a birdhouse who has apparently saddled a mutant pigeon-sparrow. The black and white is the essential underpinning. The bones of the idea.
So, adding color makes things a little more complex. I started with the girl’s face. Here is where I establish the basic color-theme. And give more character to the surprised face peering through the portal of the bird house.
Much of the work in coloring this little articus projecticus is a matter of pattern. I like doing wood-grain patterns in colored pencil. It looks good when it’s finished. But it also takes time to do line after line.
The last step is to color the bird-riding fairy-kid. Here I am completing the color-echoes and the pattern-making. More lines. More care with giving the shapes volume by using light and shadow. And now we are at the final destination. The picture is complete.
This is a doodle even though it may look like finished art. I began doodling with a pencil and she wasn’t a starship captain until I began inking it.
Yes, now and again I have to doodle. You pick up the drawing tool and a blank piece of paper, and you let your mind go anywhere and everywhere that it wants to go. Why did I choose to doodle a girl? Sounds kinda creepy and bad, doesn’t it? But I like science fiction and adventure and young people… I’m turning myself into a young adult author, after all. And I like girls… even though I am 60 and my prostate is enlarged and rather dead. I’m still a guy and I ain’t completely dead. So maybe it isn’t really so creepy. I am trying to keep my mind off of you-know-who… he-who-shall-not-be-named. Yeah, this guy.
This is truly a doodle. I drew it in pen in about ten minutes time. And it sucks (in the sense of a vacuum cleaner) because the overlong tie looks like a stream of blood and I think I drew the hands too big to look realistic.
Random and open to the bizarre, allowing for accidents to appear on the page (both the Bob Ross happy kind and the not-so-happy kind), able to follow the wandering mind as fast as the hand can capture the flow of images and ideas in the silly old noodle. That is not only what a doodle is, it is what this essay is. A doodle essay.
I can do that without making a total poo-poo mess because I have practiced so much with pencil and pen and ink and paper that the lines flow naturally from my fingers. And I can rely on my constant habit of writing stupid thoughts down to create a semi-coherent essay out of random jumbled thoughts. Instinct born of practice guides my mind and hand.
Here’s a random picture of the wall by my bed where I am writing this. Perhaps it could be called a camera doodle?
Doodling helps me avoid the things needing to be avoided. The world is ending. Betsy DeVos is likely to be the Secretary of Education. A trade war with Mexico will bring an end to much of the fruits and vegetables we can afford to eat. I am big on avoiding. You can tell that in my camera doodle. Christmas lights Mickey hasn’t taken down yet? Yeah, I’m thinking about leaving them up permanently. You know, just until the world finishes ending. My family, as Jehovah’s Witnesses, don’t celebrate Christmas anyway. So what can it hurt if I keep my one dollar string of colored lights up for another few weeks. Just until the Russian nukes start raining down on Dallas Fort Worth thanks to the red tie guy.
So there is nothing important at all in today’s blog. Just doodles everywhere. But why, then, does it make me feel so much better? Well, I would say, “Because doodling makes it better.”
Dippy Doodle Dave says, “Howdy!”
Still not feeling well, and still constantly being sabotaged by my fritzy computer, I decided to post a double doodle today. I can post quick and drippy doodles and fulfill my obligation to posting every day while binge-watching TV. A doodle, as I’m sure you know, is absent-minded drawing that starts without a plan and is sometimes done without even looking at the paper. I did them in ink with no under-drawing in pencil… kinda like walking around in blue jeans with no underwear on. Certain kinds of chafing and shifting can lead to unintended things putting a hitch in your stride.
Doodleburg Castle on the banks of the Doodlestein River
Each of the doodles presented today was completed in about 15 minutes of constant pen-pushing. So, there you have it. Have a happy-daffy doodle day!