All posts by Mary

About Mary

Welcome to Brooklyn Doodle! I have a habit of doodling on paper napkins with my sharpie at cafes, restaurants, diners, and stoops around Brooklyn. I drink tea, draw, and reflect on art, life, and living in New York City. Stop by and see the random illustrations that I leave on tables around Brooklyn. If you found one of these napkins, please share!

The Sea Creature (A Work in Progress)

Had a nightmare a few weeks ago about a terrifying sea creature that looked very angry and seemed a bit aggressive. I was told that I could walk away and live a long life or I could have a short life and live with the sea creature. There was a pill that was offered if I chose the latter of the two, which I did. Even though I was terrified, I felt that someone needed to care for it. I thought I would be the only one to do it.

A friend of mine claimed I probably give way too much of myself after I told her about the dream. It’s a fair interpretation. Lately, I’m starting to think she might be right. I’m overwhelmed and exhausted. I’m starting to think I need to nurture myself a bit more since I think it’s starting to affect my health. It’s a weird time of the year to really focus on the self when it’s really the time of year for giving. I guess the key is balance.

So, I indulged in my favorite hobby tonight: Doodling. I got lost in a drawing that resembled the sea creature from my dream. I’m still working on it but here’s what I have so far.

Sea Monster Drawing

Not an exact replication of my nightmare but I feel that I got a nice abstract essence of the creature from the deep that demands attention. I gave it my artistic attention, I guess.

Anyway, I hope this winter allows you all to wind down and enjoy the company of your loved ones. If you’re unable to meet up with your loved ones, may a cup of tea and a napkin doodle nurture you through the winter evening. Take care of yourselves and hope you have a wonderful New Year!

Happy Holidays!

Xmas tree drawing

 

Back to Napkin Doodles

Doodle on napkin at Mega Bites
Doodle on napkin at Mega Bites

“A person’s a person, no matter how small.”

-Dr. Seuss

Not really sure why I stopped drawing for so long. I think I started again because of a door decorating contest at the school where I’ve been working recently. It was a last minute decision to participate in it and it wasn’t even my classroom door. I’m covering for a teacher who’s on leave so it was my second day in the building too. I just heard that it needed to be done and that it was a Dr. Seuss theme. I approached it like I do with most of my doodles. I show up at the page and start with one element and other elements get added on as the artwork progresses. Not a tremendous amount of planning involved, esp. when you’re told you have just a couple of hours to complete it. So, yeah, the door competition reminded me of my old doodling habits at diners. It reminds me to be present, trust the process, and make my mistakes look pretty.

So even though the contest is over, you can check out my door if you CLICK HERE!

Enjoy!

Wanderlust Wednesday: Brooklyn Love

My wedding day, written by my sister, Danielle.

Blu Owl Gypsy

I have to admit, Brooklyn was not an area I visited often when I lived in NY. Though, in theory, it was a short trip from where I lived, the truth is the traffic was normally a nightmare, and mass transit wasn’t appealing to a person who likes to get in the car and go. So when my sister announced she was getting married in her neighborhood in Brooklyn I decided to take my vacation time to be with family and we booked a night at the Marriott at the Brooklyn Bridge the night before the wedding.

Marriot at the Brooklyn Bridge Brooklyn, much like NYC,  is an area in that is growing and evolving. Truth is, when we drove in, I was stunned by the amount of development that had happened since I was last there.  The Barclay Center, which debut was in 2012 , has created an epicenter for new construction, businesses…

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Doodling on Snow

Snow provokes responses that reach right back to childhood.

-Andy Goldsworthy

Snow Face

If you don’t know who Andy Goldsworthy is, you should check out his documentary, Rivers and Tides. He’s an Environmental Artist who goes out into nature and creates beautiful sculptural pieces using only the material that nature provides him. Since some of his pieces are dependent on temperature (like ice and snow) or are so delicate as to be worn away by wind or water, he works against time. He videotapes or takes photos of his work and sells that. Occasionally, his work will survive the elements and can be viewed in person. There is one place in New York where anyone can view his environmental sculpture and that’s at Storm King Art Center, which is actually a Sculpture Park. It’s presently closed for the season but it’s set to reopen on April 1st so I may have to plan a small road trip over there in a month and a half.

In the meantime, I’ll take advantage of this snowy season and create doodles on park tables in the snow. Maybe the chilly weather will freeze them into place until Spring!

Snow Fish

These were created on Valentine’s Evening along Dekalb Ave. in Fort Greene. The snow was just right for playing with it.

Snow Lady

I had a lovely day with lovely surprises; played some pool, air hockey, and ping pong. Walked through the snow and had some milky hot chocolate from The Hungry Ghost cafe. Ended the night at Hoja Santa, a lovely Mexican Restaurant that fed us well. I hope you enjoyed your Valentine’s Day weekend as well. If not, go buy yourself some flowers and chocolate now that it’s all on sale.

Snow Candle

Go play in the snow!

Handing Out Wings

Things are always better in the morning.

-Harper Lee, To Kill a Mockingbird

Blue butterfly wings

Good morning and Happy Valentine’s Day! There’s a small part of me that wants to bash the holiday as being so commercial but I really enjoy seeing people do nice things for each other. A nearby church gave out free roses to people who crossed their path. This included some really tough Brooklyn types who walked away holding their blue roses delicately and each person who received a rose seemed to be a bit in awe. It’s as though this was the first time anyone had ever considered giving them flowers and so they were extra careful with it. It might have been the sweetest thing I’ve seen this week. Today, I dedicate these wings to those who gave out free roses to strangers yesterday.

Double long wings

Bird Wings

Another lovely Valentine’s Day surprise involved something on www.kiva.org. It’s a global lending site to help individuals who need a loan for specific projects but due to things ranging from high poverty rates and political reasons, most banks wouldn’t normally lend to them. I learned about it from Amy Poehler’s Smart Girls Site because they have a team who raise money for some of these situations. I managed to get eight other fabulous women on the team to help a group of Vietnamese Women raise money to build a latrine and washing station for one of their members in a Women’s Union. Maybe that’s technically not a Valentine’s Day gift but meeting our goal felt like one. So, I’ll dedicate a few more wings to those ladies who helped.

Two birds

Bat WingsBug Wings

My last set of wings goes to my husband-to-be. He’s surviving yet another Valentine’s Day with me, which is pretty impressive. The best gift he gave to me was when my allergies acted up this week and, after taking some allergy meds, he let me sleep for 11 hours straight. He didn’t complain that I didn’t get up to eat his beautiful dinner that he prepared, he did the dishes, and slept on the couch. That’s better than any bouquet of flowers or night out on the town. That was just sheer thoughtfulness when it was clearly needed. These wings are for him. Much love!

Pencil wings

Enjoy the day and look for kindness around you!

Wearing Wings on Grey Days

The man who has no imagination has no wings.

-Muhammad Ali

Abstract Butterfly

Here’s another drawing from my wings project. I am not sure what has me stuck on drawing wings. At times, I feel like a teenage girl doodling wings all over her notebook. Not a terrible thing. It’s a great way to clear my head of stuff I hear during Jury Duty. It’s gotten to a point where I like to imagine different types of wings for strangers passing by me on a crowded city street. Who would get dragonfly wings, raven’s wings, bee’s wings, polka dotted wings? Would we treat each other differently if we imagined each person with wings? It might soften their demeanor or make them look more terrifying depending on the type of wings one wore. It’s just a bit of nonsense. A daydream to make these grey winter days a bit more intriguing.

Long Feathered Wings

What sort of wings will you wear today? Friday the 13th wings? Pre-Valentine’s Day Wings?

Well, time to head to the courts and deal with some grey realities. Thank God for our imaginations and hot chocolate!

Finding Your Starting Point

The starting point of discovering who you are, your gifts, your talents, your dreams, is being comfortable with yourself. Spend time alone. Write in a journal. Take long walks in the woods.
-Robin S. Sharma
Pointilism Butterfly Wings
Find your starting point today. Who knows where it will lead you!