I do doodle. Do you?

I doodled today. I do like to doodle. (I also like to say the word doodle. Also noodle. I may well have to doodle a noodle just so I can talk about it.) Anyhow, here is what I did doodle.

My doodle, as photographed by John.

Today we went into Boston (John, Phoebe and me) to go to a computational linguistics meeting. We (that is John and I, not Phoebe) were part of the group’s foundation almost 6 years ago, and were very active in the group for several years. But for that past few months, the group has been largely hibernating. (Not the people so much. They’ve been largely awake. But busy.) We’ve decided to reanimate the group, though. Which is great. I did, however, volunteer to do actual work for said group, before my mind had a chance to catch up with my mouth. And as such, I have given myself even more metaphorical bagel over which to spread my figurative cream cheese.

After the meeting, John wanted to go to a camera shop in Cambridge. This seemed fair, especially since all during the meeting, John had been pretty tied up with Phoebe. (Don’t worry, not literally tied up. We used duct tape, not rope. No, no, no, I mean John was busy keeping Phoebe occupied.) We’d brought a few toys, but they didn’t hold interest her for long. John and Phoebe went wandering for a bit, and came back with, among other items, a new box of crayons and a pad of drawing paper.

By the time the meeting finished, over an hour past Phoebe’s usual naptime, Phoebe was both wired and tired. Within a few minutes of being back in the car, though, she was out. (As in asleep. But still in the car.) So when we stopped at the camera store, I decided to just hang out in the car with Phoebe so she could nap. I figured I had my laptop to keep me busy, anyhow, and I could even do some work. However, my laptop ran out of battery within a few minutes. And I found myself with no reading material other than a sort of sad little board book we’d gotten from the pediatrician’s office.

So I decided to take advantage of the crayons.

Here’s what I doodled while waiting in the car. (I did a bit of the coloring after we were moving, but discovered that I get carsick when drawing in the car. Not something I’d known. I can’t read in the car, but I didn’t realize doodling would be a problem.)


I added a bit more to it while John was giving Phoebe a bath.

Then I finished it up once Phoebe was in bed.

I also fiddled a bit with the levels in iPhoto, since I had trouble getting the color right in the picture. (These 4 photos are ones I took, by the way.) And I stumbled across this weird effect: when I boosted the saturation and the contrast, there was a point in the levels adjustment where the white paper appeared black, and the opaque crayon bits came out white. Nifty, huh?

20 thoughts on “I do doodle. Do you?

  1. I love crayons!!

    Yes, I’m 29 years old. And I love crayons.

    Your doodling is much better than mine, but I sure do love to color. :)

    Oh, and the cool black photo is way fun.

  2. I second azahar. I wish my doodles were that impressive! And what’s more, I wish I made more time to doodle in general. Grad school makes one too serious for one’s own good. I advocate even more doodling!

  3. in high school my friend and I had “doodle books” – just spiral notebooks that we doodled and wrote notes to each other that we passed back in forth. I have a box of them in my attic. I assume she does, as well.

  4. randomyriad-
    I do tend to be thinking of micro-organisms. At least one of the bits is very much inspired by a paramecium.

    I heartily recommened it. I hadn’t doodle in a while, either.

    The magic of the car is variable for Phoebe. The timing must be just right. Sometimes she’ll stay awake for a whole hour-long car ride when I’d hope she’d nap. Sometimes she falls asleep when we are 5 minutes from home…
    Photoshop is indeed fun, but it threatens to eat up more of my time than I can afford to feed it.

    Crayons are wonderful. It won’t be too long before your little guy is ready to start using them. And then you can “help” him with the coloring.

    Ah, yes. The early 90s were indeed my doodle heyday. I have a couple of my envelopes that my sister saved for me and gave back. Mebbe I’ll scan them some time.

    Why thank you. Maybe I’ll have an exhibition with Phoebe some time.

    I also advocate doodling. And you’re right that grad school is an obstacle to doodling. In fact, had my laptop not run out of battery, I would have been doing reading for school. Which is usually a lot less colorful.

    I’d love to see some of your doodles! I have one small journal-type book with a few doodles, but most of doodlage was in the margins of my class notebooks. (With some on the envelopes that jenny mentioned.)

    Why, thank you! Though I think doodle best describes the sort of aimless silliness of it. Also, as I mentioned, I do like the word doodle.

    Doody doodles, huh? I bet you could whip out a mean amoeba.

    Why, thank you!

  5. Neat drawings.

    We saw a thing on Nova about Intelligent Design, and the ID proponents used the flagellum as proof that we were created by an intelligent designer. Great, just keep it out of the schools.

    The flagellum is actually a nano scale rotary motor. Wow. I had no idea nature could create actual fully rotating parts.

    So your drawings reminded me of the micro organisms in the show (I suppose they exist in real life too, but since not in the Bible, its questionable…. just kidding.).

    Regarding the laptop battery… I’m surprised you folks don’t own an inverter. I got one last year, and can’t live without it when traveling. Plug it in your cig lighter (sorry… power port!) and instant 110AC to run your laptop, blender or favorite band saw. ‘Cause you never know.


  6. Sorry, that was supposed to be….

    ‘ keep it out of the public schools.’

    Until the gub’mint starts funding my ‘Erich’s School of Satan’.

  7. That’s a great doodle, though I’d probably have to call that more of a drawing. I doodle and it’s mostly just lines, squiggles and the like. I also like to color and paint with my kids.

  8. erich-
    I guess John does have an inverter, but we didn’t have it with us. We hadn’t thought to use it with our band saw, though. Just think of the possibilities! (I think there are likely to be micro-organisms in the Bible. I mean, if you leave one soaking in pond water.)

    Yes, it’s a tough call where to, um… draw the line between a drawing and a doodle. I call it a doodle because it was aimless. Though I have “drawings” that are not terribly more planned.

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