Inktober 2018

It’s almost October, and that means it’s almost time for the annual artistic challenge that is Inktober. Every year, artists strive to create a piece of artwork every day for the whole month entirely in ink. To find out more, have a look at the official website.

You may recall I tried Inktober in 2016, with mixed results. I managed about 25 out of the 31 days – not bad considering it was my first time working in that medium, and I only owned one single bottle of violet coloured ink! In 2016 I challenged myself to ignore the official Inktober prompts and instead alternate between two subjects I loathe painting – self portraits and still life.

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This year I’m going to ignore the prompts again, but challenge myself to complete some portraits – hopefully you will be able to recognise who they are! I will be sharing my efforts over on Instagram and Twitter, so please have a look and do give me a ‘like’ if you think it looks good. Once the month is complete, I will share my favourites on the Gallery page.

It’s a tough challenge, but that’s kinda the point – you need to challenge yourself as an artist and occasionally step outside your comfort zone to develop and grow. In preparation, I am cutting the watercolour paper to size in advance, have sourced all of my reference photos and am practicing sketching the people whenever I get some spare time. To further give myself a chance of completing the challenge, I have decided to stick to a small size. Jake Parker, the creator of Inktober, says you don’t necessarily have to complete the 31 days “You can do it daily, or go the half-marathon route and post every other day, or just do the 5K and post once a week. Whatever you decide, just be consistent with it. Inktober is about growing and improving and forming positive habits, so the more you’re consistent the better.”

As a full time parent, I’m sure there will be a few spanners thrown into the works for good measure, I may not complete all the ink sketches I want to and towards the end of the month I am also exhibiting my artwork at BristolCon, so there’s plenty to be getting on with! Are any of you taking part in Inktober this year? If so, let me know in the comments below and feel free to include a link to where we can all follow your progress.

Wish me luck!





March Wet Canvas Challenge

I am being brave this month and have volunteered to host the Different Strokes challenge on Wet Canvas. It’s a great website that I really enjoy using and have learnt a lot from the other artists. The challenge is set out below – why don’t you have a go too?

This month’s challenge is:

“The Forgotten Colour”

We all have one somewhere.

A lonely, unloved and forgotten tube of paint at the bottom of our paintbox. It could be a vibrant purple or pink that came in a set that has never been used, a golden green we bought that just doesn’t look right in any landscape, or a metallic impulse buy that has never really worked the way we wanted.

This month’s challenge is to dust off that tube and use some of it up!

You can also make use of white to tint and black to shade, but please remember this is essentially a single colour challenge.

To get you started, try googling ‘monochromatic paintings’, or imagining how some of your favourite paintings would look if they had been done in just one colour.

There is no set subject matter this month – feel free to paint anything that takes your fancy, but I would encourage you to resist painting something you think fits your forgotten colour – challenge yourself to juxtapose your subject and colour – paint a classic vintage car in hot pink, a portrait in purple or a still life in silver – no landscapes in green! Most of all – have fun! Enjoy rummaging through your paints and giving a forgotten colour the chance to shine!

Here is my response to the challenge – a still life of what some people may regard as typically ‘masculine’ items, painted in a colour stereotypically associated with women.

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