Half Way!

Hey there!

I've made it past the halfway mark for Inktober! I'm really excited to be able to fully participate in the challenge this year. Along with this blog post I have also created an Inktober gallery page where you can view the drawings I have done so far in order.

While I was creating my drawing for today's prompt, I noticed a lot of the things that I have worked on so far this month.

  • I've been experimenting with materials, techniques and subject matter.
  • I've been improving my ability to draw people (something I totally avoid doing.)
  • I've been better understanding character development and story telling.
  • I've been excercising my creative thinking skills and imagination.
  • I've been way more courageous about sharing my work, even when I'm not 100% pleased with it.

Yesterday I was extremely pleased with the illustration I had created for the prompt "fat." The final piece was a chubby squirrel gathering acorns, and not only was I happy with the subject matter, I was also over the moon about how I had approached it stylistically. I'll be focused on working in this style moving into the future. 

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Having made my favorite illustration so far, I was a little nervous about todays. The prompt was "graceful," and I ended up drawing a witch (who I've noticed has been making quite a few appearances) and her copilot cat riding on a magic carpet. Initially I thought to draw leaves blowing in the wind, so I incorporated that element as well. When I finished I wasn't nearly as confident about it as yesterdays drawing but I shut the inner critic down and decided to share it on Instagram anyway. I really think I'm beginning to understand the spirit of this challenge which is as Jake Parker, illustrator and creator of Inktober, has said, "finished not perfect." If you haven't seen this video before, you should go watch it. 

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One of the most important things I've learned by doing this is that not every drawing is going to be as good as the last, but most future drawings will be better than the previous if I'm dedicated to improving my practice. And that's what this is really all about.

I also knew when I began that I don't want to primarily use ink in my work, which means that the work I'm making right now won't look exactly like the work I'll be making next month. Is that going to stop me from experimenting and sharing it with others? Heck no! 

I also learned that sharing work whether I'm 100% confident in it or not is really important. Most likely the things I think are mistakes won't go noticed by others. Of course there will be other things that will be noticed, good and bad. There is also always room for improvement, but the fact that I started and finished anything means I'm creating room for that improvement to happen. I think a lot of people can relate to this journey, and I'm beginning to think of social media as a way to inspire and create connections with others on the same path. And that means sharing work, goof ups and all.

Thanks for stopping by! In the meantime keep a look out for the remainder of this months drawings!

Halloween & Helping Hands

Yesterday I sold some of my work at the First Friday Artwalk. Being my first time doing this, I wasn't really sure how it would go but and I am above and beyond excited about how it went! 

As you may know from my last blog post, I spent the past week doing preparations for this event, which mainly consisted of the illustrating, printing, and trimming of my very own greeting cards. I'm a huge fan of snail-mail. In fact, I have three close friends who I write to regularly. So with this in mind, and knowing my favorite holiday is coming up, I decided to illustrate some Halloween cards so that others could send some snail-mail love as well! I remember being younger and getting so excited near my birthday because I knew that there would be cards coming addressed specifically to me. The excitement never fades, even now that I'm older. In fact, I think it's gotten even more exciting now that I'm older because communication has become so instantaneous with smartphones and computers. 

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Along with the cards, I sold ceramic work I had made last fall, which really needed loving homes. As I went about my preparations I was also thinking quite a bit about what's been going on in the world and felt that this would be a great opportunity to reach out and lend a helping hand. I decided that for every item that I sold at the artwalk I would donate $1 to the hurricane Maria relief through Americares. I am so pleased to share that this was a great success. I was able to donate even more money than I had originally anticipated! Thank you to all those who made this possible!

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Now I'll start brainstorming what to do for my next big project. I'm also really excited to continue with Inktober, so keep a look out for those daily on Instagram!

Until next time. 

When one door closes, another opens. 

This weekend has been life changing, in the best way possible. It's amazing what can happen when you listen to your inner voice and decide to do what's best for yourself, even though it might be quite scary. For the first time ever I feel as though I have finally taken control of my life, and in doing so I have suddenly found myself where I've longed to be for many years now, starting my journey in becoming an amazing illustrator.

Since the world is my oyster, I've decided to do all of the things that I've always been wanting to, but have been really afraid to do: begin making the illustrations I've always hoped to, sell my work at the First Friday Art Walk, start a blog, participate in Inktober and actually share my work on Instagram. Gosh, who am I?!

On Saturday I wrote a list of all the goals I have and hung it in my studio. The first and most simple was to draw something and share it on Instagram, so I decided to take a trip down to my favorite coffee shop, sat down, and did it. I actually posted it, and for the first time in my life, after multiple not-so-genuine attempts in the past, I finally shared with the world something I was very proud to call mine. I don't even recognize myself. 

Sketchbook 9.29.17

Sketchbook 9.29.17

The timing of things couldn't have been any more perfect. Last year I had participated in Inktober but didn't share anything because, well, I was really insecure. But I had a blast doing it in secret! So this year I told myself I would really participate and share what I made. And that's exactly what I did today. 

Swift as a Fox, 2017

Swift as a Fox, 2017

I love to draw using pencil and when I discovered that Derwent Inktense pencils were water soluble it was the one of the greatest "Eurika!" moments of my life. So I decided that most likely, this will be the media I will be working with most for this challenge. Which is what I used for today's illustration. 

Along with all of that I'm also looking for volunteer opportunities in the area, and preparing to sell work at the First Friday Art Walk coming up. Today I did some rough drafts of four Halloween cards that I'd like to make prints of and sell, and I will also be selling ceramic bowls that I had made last fall. Of course this is all if the weather holds up, fingers crossed!

Until next time! 

P.S. Thank you to everyone who has helped me build such confidence in myself, my mother, sister, and boyfriend especially. Thank you to everyone who encouraged me to find bravery and confidence in starting this new journey. And thank you to all those in advance who I will meet along the way.