Marylore Seecharan Illustrations
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Taking up Inktober 2016


I did it! Before anything, I must thank yall so much for the daily support, your awesomeness is inspiring and always encouraging me to keep it up!
So, Inktober is done for this year. And just to give you a bit of context, it's a daily drawing challenge (with ink) for the 31 days of October. It was a first for me. I'm still fairly new on Instagram and I discovered this ink challenge only this year. 

Yes, I encountered some difficulties. I’ve missed out on a few drawings, but it is such a great and rewarding experience anyways that I’m super happy with what I’ve accomplished! And I definitely recommend it if you were thinking about doing it.
Once the last drawing was done, looking at all of them felt really good, I felt proud of my evolution, I could see it! (Note to inner-self: I usually struggle seeing my improvements, but this time I beat you at it) 

I am no expert in the matter, and yet all these positive thoughts afterwards inspired me to share my own experience with you, thinking who knows if any of this can help out someone to give it a try.

If you were thinking about taking up this sort of daily creative challenge, may it be next Inktober or #100dayproject in April, or even set one up yourself, here are a few of my own take aways:

1 | Setting up a personal goal

My goals were to work on my drawing skills, push my thinking process and if possible create a habit by the end of it, and cuz 'yeah after 31 days something would improve on some level for sure', I thought! 

But keep in mind that although you have personal goals set for this challenge, massive part of the pressure might simply be coming from crossing the finish line. That in itself could also be your own personal goal alone. Anything that can get you going!

2 | What to draw?

If you have no ideas, that's totally fine! You can find the official prompts from Jake Parker's website, who actually created the Inktober challenge back in 2009 and who kindly shares a list for each 31 days that you can follow.

And if you're thinking of a theme in particular, make sure that it will still interest you half way in! You can also get inspired by artists who've done it in the past years, see what theme they've picked out, and do it your way. Or, you can find loads of theme lists online like this one here.

    I had no idea what to draw, I was like 'let's pick quotes! There are so many I won't run out of ideas!' Yeah hmmm about that... Some quotes were brilliant but too abstract and I just couldn't figure how to represent them in a drawing. At least in a limited amount of time. 

    So definitely, choosing a theme can be tricky, if it's too abstract, too ambitious or crazy complicate, it can add up difficulties to the task. 

    3| Making a list

    Choosing my own theme, there's one other thing I wish I had prepare for before starting: a list for each of the 31 days ahead. Everyday I would struggle most of my time allocated to do Inktober just to find a quote that would trigger an idea of illustration for it. The fun part, which is drawing and inking, didn't take that long in the whole process. 

    That being said, I personally wouldn’t share my list, just to keep the freedom of swapping days if I wanted to. But that's my opinion, however this kind of commitment could also be another motivation for you.

    4| Have fun with it!

    Besides the fact that you're challenging yourself, also have fun doing it :)

    Don't be too hard on yourself. I've missed a few drawings yet I didn't give up and I'm still enjoying the results.
    You can also decide beforehand not to draw every day because you just don't have the time, and that's fine, just don't give up and maybe set yourself a smaller number of drawings to reach by the deadline. Keep in mind that the challenge is more in the consistency part of daily drawing/painting with ink.

    Finally don’t be scared to experiment. This sort of challenge is excellent to practice/master a technique, a medium, and go beyond your comfort zone. Pushing yourself will reward you with improvements and lots of other ways, for sure!

    5| Super resources

    These kind of challenges can be adapted to anything you can think of! It can be creative but it can also apply to other parts of your life too, like creating a good habit, quitting a bad one, trying something new... No limits. 

    You can check out The Great Discontent website with Ella Luna for the #100dayproject creative annual challenge, which will be next April, or you can also do this anytime of the year really! 

    I really enjoy listening to Elise Joy's podcasts in Elise Gets Crafty show. In this episode #101 she actually talks about her experience with the #100dayproject challenge mentioned above, as she chose to do '100 days of pep talk', which resulted in publishing a book to gather them all. It's super good stuff you can listen to online or in iTunes.

    And if you're not yet familiar with Fran Meneses aka Frannerd, get ready cuz she's amazing! On her blog and Youtube channel she generously shares precious advice, super tips on illustration, time-lapses gems... And it so happens that she released this video about her Inktober experience. #goodies

    And that's a wrap! I hope these blabla will actually be of some use in some way. Of course feel free to share more tips in the comments, these can't be all ahah! Share your experience, ask questions, spread the love <3

    Check all my Inktober 2016 drawings on Instagram