Inktober In Review; Week Four, The Final Count Down

Hi to everyone who has been following along, and to those just stopping in, check out the last three parts of this series following my (mis+)adventures in completing an ink drawing a day for Inktober. I’ve enjoyed doing this drawing challenge for three years now, and I’d like to say it gets easier, but I still find it is a “challenge”. If only due to fitting it into my busy life, and trying to think of ideas, as well as the execution of them, often with little time. I have noticed that I do seem to get faster, and feel that my drawings improve as the weeks go by, except for a few here and there when I was truly rushed. In essence this does help me to work better, faster. The actual challenge ends Halloween Day, so for the purpose of writing this post, I’ve finished up, and will show you what I’ve come up this last week. Starting off with the prompt word; “ancient” which I really liked. Below you’ll see what I thought would be a good choice, as well as a style I more or less followed for the rest of this week. I threw in some artistic licence as well as a bit of a graphic look.

Day twenty four had me “reeling” silly pun intended. What do you draw for “dizzy”? I mean I could have gone with the obvious, but I thought about what makes me feel dizzy. Looking up at tall buildings can do that to me. A sort of reverse vertigo. I only had about twenty minutes that day so I kept it simple.

I think I had a bit of a sweet tooth for day twenty five, heheh. Uuummm, yum!

On day twenty six, I had a little more time so attempted to do a kind of silhouette of a night sky with the Milky Way.

The prompt for day twenty seven is tricky. It is simply “coat”. What?! I guess this could be considered either really easy, or “wait, what?”. But it does leave the possibilities fairly wide open. Having not felt rushed or pressured, I just played around with it for a while and felt a sort of cross between a Steampunky and a military parade theme for the coat would of course look great on a giraffe.

And what better “ride” as in day twenty eight, is there than a fun carnival one? (Which btw, I never go on.)

For the artists out there, you may have noticed that some of these could be finished somewhat more. This is all part of the whole Inktober challenge, for me anyway. Often, there just isn’t time, so you have to be able to say, ‘yeah, this is as finished as it’s gonna get.” And that’s OK. It’s great to just be able to draw along. This year I managed to do every day, (and I include the one I shredded-see episode one of this series), because although I decided not to use it, I still put a lot of effort into it. For day twenty nine, “injured” I was in a sort of “Hunger Games”, “The 100” kind of mood. Get up, you can do this!

Anyway, day thirty found me in a more gentle mood, so for the word “catch” I felt this kitty would be a cute idea.

Finishing up for the last day, day thirty one, Happy Halloween! The prompt is “ripe”. I figure that by the time we pick and carve a pumpkin, they’re pretty “ripe”. I almost went for the whole over-ripe thing, making them all rotted and such for Halloween, but then decided to go with this. Let me introduce, Moogle, and Arrgh in, “Moogle and Arrgh see a ghost”. (I did make them a wee squishy).

Wrapping up this mini series on Inktober 2019 I want to say that I am grateful to people like Jake Parker who come up with ideas like this and are kind enough to share them. Inktober has grown to include fantastic artists from all over the world! If you can, take a few minutes to scroll through the literally thousands of pieces of artwork for Inktober on Twitter and Instagram. The many artist’s works are varied and amazing! I have no affiliation to these sites, other than having tagged along, but as an artist, or just anyone who appreciates art, it’s something that shouldn’t be missed! I hope you’ve enjoyed following my attempts to produce an ink drawing a day. See you next time! (I’m not sure, but I may be taking a bit of a break for a few weeks, but who knows!?)

Inktober In Review; Week Three, Of Ghosts And Men.

Due to some time constraints, this post is a little late today, so I’ll jump right in to show you the ink drawings I came up with for this week’s prompt words. As I mentioned in the past two posts, if you’re not familiar with Inktober, please see the first post for October. That being said, here are this week’s drawings beginning with day 16, “Wild”. And of course anyone who has been following along, would know that this is a perfect prompt word for me, being that I am a bit fanatical about elephants being free and wild.

Day 17 is “Ornament”, and I thoroughly enjoyed sketching this little drawing for this prompt!

For day 18’s prompt word, “Misfit”, it took me a while to come up with something, but when I did, I just went with it, and I like how it came out. Black cats, pumpkins…and a duck? Sometimes you have to just go with it. I hope you like it! Pretty cute, huh!?

The prompt for day 19, is “Sling”. When trying to come up with something all I could think of was medical devices. Not wanting to go with that, I procrastinated for a while, but then remembered that there is a form of yoga where people hang from long slings. (And I added a bat for the Halloween vibe).

A silly little sketch for day 20, I got an ellie in there, heheh, and a nod to Halloween.

For day 21, the prompt word is “Treasure”, and of course the most important treasure I can think of, (outside of family and friends), is elephants, and sharing the importance of them in this world. They are a vital link in the chain of life, are intelligent, warm sentient beings who know joy, sorrow, and love. They deserve our protection, and respect.

It is the 22nd, and the prompt word for Inktober today is “Ghost”. Very appropriate to the season. Should be a breeze. So to anyone who has been following along, (and you have, right?!) you know that I hate to do the expected. The problem with this is that it gets harder and harder to do. And the word ghost is no exception.

I’m a huge Supernatural fan, the TV show… anyway, with only a short time to do some sketching, it may not be the greatest representation, but I think I pulled it off, and I’m good with it. That’s what counts, that you’re good with what you create. I hope you enjoyed this week’s post and stop back next time to see what I manage to come up with for the last week of Inktober. See you then!

Inktober In Review; Week Two, “Sixty’s Style, Giants and Legends”.

For those of you who are following along, I won’t go into the whole description of Inktober again. I will just mention for those who don’t know about it, to please visit my last two blog posts, or head on over to Inktober on Twitter. So I’ll jump right in here about my first ink drawing for week two. The prompt word for the day, was “frail”. As I do, I didn’t want to go with anything cliche’, and unfortunately this led me to procrastinate until I basically had no time, energy or desire to draw anything. But not wanting to skip a day, I did a very quick drawing of earth. Yes, I know it is not accurate in any way, which further on in this post, you’ll see was humorously pointed out to me. However I do feel it gives an OK representation. My idea here was to point out the fragility of our one and only earth. I hoped that people would pick up on that, otherwise, my “frail” image, is mostly a “fail”. Ah well, such is the exciting and dangerous world of art.

For day nine of our little adventure, the prompt word is “Swing”. Thinking out of the box and into the dark of Halloween, I thought an image of a child in a red cape, (wink), who decided to swing her lantern into the dark of night in search of, ahem, her grandmother as a large unfriendly, (though he came out looking more wise then “bad”) wolf followed her would be appropriate. I had a little more time to play with this, and I was happy with the shadowing, and how the composition generally came out.

Day ten, the prompt was “pattern”. I wanted to get an elephant or two into the mix this week, so playing around a bit, while also watching TV and “chill”, this is what I came up with. This whole thing was just an exercise in doodling. But it’s not too bad. My older brother, pointed out that it reminded him of 1960’s art. So there you go. This was a much better reaction than his about my “earth” drawing, where-in he inquired as to if “Australia, (where he mostly resides), was in the mix?”

The prompt word for day eleven, is “snow”. I decided to go with an image I had from a ride “up the road” out of our little college town, to a Christmas tree farm. The day we went it was bitterly cold, but very beautiful. There had been a fresh coat of fallen snow, and the trees and fields through the woods, were pristine, and just wonderfully quiet.

Finding that day twelve was “Dragon”, was fun. For a few years, in between jobs, I took a part time position at what was known as a “head shop”. It was actually two separate stores owned by one person. I worked on the side that sold a lot of hippie style clothing, rings, incense and things along that line. The owner also graciously “allowed” me to sell some of my hand made crochet bags, and other things I made, for the low low price of 40% ! (I have never since, worked with anyone who expected to make more than 10% off of my work. and neither should you.) Anyway, for some reason I got into drawing dragons, (I may have had it in mind to do a kid’s book.) In any case, it brought back some funny and sometimes odd memories (perhaps a story for another day), as I worked on this drawing.

I have to confess that I was actually at work when I did this quick sketch for the day 13 prompt, “Ash”. So I was interrupted a lot, and tried to get it done as fast as I could. This is why it may not be the best for a number of reasons. (I won’t point them out, as I learned a long time ago, with one’s looks, and art, it’s best not to point out what you perceive as problem areas, because most of the time no one notices anyway.) Where was I, oh, yes, I think depicting Ash from “Ash vs Evil Dead” probably fits the prompt and the whole Halloween vibe perfectly.

This last little drawing is for both the day fourteen and fifteen prompts; “Overgrown” and “Legend”. I pictured a story about a young boy, completely overgrown to giant proportions, who was the object of ridicule by his peers, until one day a great tsunami hit their seaside village. He saved them all, and was then a hero. I literally wrote a sort of sing song-y story to draw this picture for, which turns out, was for me anyway, a good way to make the picture evolve. So there you have it, week two of Inktober in review. I hope you enjoyed this post, and have maybe been inspired to try an art challenge. Thank you for reading my blog! see you next time!

Inktober In Review; Week One, “Enchanted”.

As a quick recap, for those of you who aren’t familiar with it, Inktober is a fun art challenge that lasts through the month of October. It was started in 2009 by Mr. Jake Parker. An artist who said that he started it as a “way of challenging himself to improve his inking skills, and improve drawing habits.” It has become a fun, (sometimes stressful) way for many other artists to do this as well. Mr. Parker posts a list of words to be used as prompts to get you thinking about something to draw. He does mention however, that people can draw whatever they like, and many people do. I usually try to stick to the prompts. I did post the first two drawings of the challenge last week, so I thought I would stick some older Inktober or Drawlloween (another great challenge), sketches here as well to keep it interesting. (You can see these, and more from a past Inktober challenge on my blog post from July 9th, 2019, “Challenge Me”)

Some, maybe most of the one’s I did last year, had a decidedly more sinister aspect to them. I did this in keeping with the whole, Halloween month theme. I may do some in this vein this year, who knows? The following are the images I’ve done for the first seven days of this year’s Inktober, beginning with Day 1 “Ring”.

As mentioned in my last post, I decided to start out with a simple, easy picture for the first prompt, “ring”. (above), no pressure. You might ask yourself, ‘pressure? Why is there pressure’? Is there a prize involved, (no). Fame, fortune? (Nope). So why do literally thousands of people join in this challenge? Of course I can’t speak for anyone but myself, so I will give you my reasoning. I have no reasoning. No just kidding. I do like a challenge. It makes me think, often way outside the box, and gives me a chance to stretch my artistic chops so to speak. For me there is some stress involved though. And from different comments I’ve read on the Inktober twitter page, I’m not the only one. When I commit to doing something, I like, nay, I am compelled to follow through. Even though I do it basically for myself, I sometimes put pressure on myself. But then I remember the spirit of it, and find it is fun to do, and to interact with other artists and to see what they come up with. Day 2 is “Mindless” I decided not to go into the whole reason of why I ended up re-using an older sketch, as I explained it last week. So if you’re interested and (gasp) didn’t read last week’s post, you can find out why there. 🙂

For day three the prompt is “bait”. Trying to avoid the obvious, I went way out on a limb and did something that is maybe a little too sweet. But I was happy with it, so that’s all that matters, heheh.

Day 4 is “Freeze”. You may notice a little running theme. I had had it in mind to try to do all of my pieces with elephants as central figures. I’ve already missed a few on that. But again, no big deal. I did receive a very thoughtful compliment on this one, and that is always really appreciated. Like I mentioned folks doing this are extremely nice, and encouraging.

Day 5 is “Build”. Again, maybe I’m being a little corny, but this is a subject close to my heart, and if I can influence even one person to be kinder, and to want to help animals, then that’s OK.

When I’m doing any of these challenges, I don’t look at what others have done for prompts until after I’ve done my own so as not to be influenced. Drawings run the gammit from very simple, to extreme crazy-amazing work. I won’t lie, I do feel sometimes that I have to “up my game.” But that’s only for my own benefit. As an artist, I am always striving to stretch. These challenges aren’t a competition, and people are kind and honestly enjoy each other’s work. I highly recommend it for anyone. We are a week in, but you can jump in at any time.

Day 6 “Husky” This was a total “gimme” for me. I have a husky, and she loves to pose. (Really she just lays around a lot.) This is Kota.

Other than when I am painting abstracts, I’m mostly a realist painter. I have always admired fantasy paintings, and the artists who have the ability to bring that to new heights. So this last prompt for the week, “Enchanted” was a little trickier for me. I didn’t want to do anything trite, but again, it isn’t my usual style. After thinking about it a bit, I think I came up with a good mix of realism, and fantasy. Many times when I’m drawing or painting, time slips by me. I have often looked back at a piece and thought how it didn’t seem as if I’d done it, as if my paint brush, or my pencil is… “enchanted”.

Thank you for taking the time to read my blog. I hope you enjoyed it, and maybe learned a few things. See you next time!

It’s “Inktober”, Ya’all !

Today marks the first day of “Inktober 2019” . For those of you who don’t know, it’s a drawing challenge started by a man named Jake Parker. Basically during the month of October, anyone who wants to join in the fun can! Everyday there is a new “prompt”. You just draw a picture of whatever comes to mind, and ink it, (but I guess it’s not imperative that you ink your drawing.) I like to, as it brings me back to my earlier roots, when I did a lot of ink work. I also like the look. Then go to Twitter, hash tag it like this; #Inktober and #Inktober2019. Let me know if you do, I’d love to see your work!

I’m starting out with a simple one, no pressure. Today’s prompt is “ring”, so I’ve done a ring of ellies! I’m not always able to do one everyday, though I do try. It’s good practice as well as fun. I don’t look at other’s work, until after I’ve done my version of the prompt. I feel this makes it less likely that I would be influenced by anyone else’s work. It is fun to see what other people come up with afterward though!

I’ve already had a stumbling block of sorts. In order to get some momentum, I did a few pictures ahead. For day two, the prompt is “mindless”. Rather than do something expected, (as it is Halloween season) and do say, a zombie, I decided to do something a little different. I had also decided that I would somehow incorporate elephants into each picture, sort of a running theme. So I drew a person mindlessly killing a beautiful animal. (I can’t even write it, uugghh). Technically, it came out pretty well. I wrote on the pant leg of the person, evil, and death, and on the poor animal, good and life. However. after looking at it, I realized, no matter how strongly I feel about this subject, (and I do), I couldn’t bring myself to post this. It is more my style to draw the beauty of what we can, and are losing, rather than go for the shock value. So I shredded it. I instantly felt better. I’m sure some would say that I should have posted it, but again, not me. I’ll leave that to others, and fight my battle, my way.

Johnny Depp, Helena Bonham Carter; “Sweeney Todd”

I have posted a lot of my past ink sketches before, so if you’ve seen them, here are some of them for you to enjoy again! heheh. And if you haven’t… enjoy!

“Mindlessly Waiting”

I’ve decided to use the drawing of me waiting for a movie to start as my 2nd day Inktober post; “Mindless” . #Inktober #Inktober2019 (Although it was also pretty mindless, in this case it was pleasant to sit and chat while we waited.)

Happy Inktober everyone! See you next time!

Cats, Work, and Changing Seasons

So I’m not sure if anyone’s noticed, but I haven’t been around as much of late. Truth be told, I just haven’t had the energy. Due to the changing seasons, some problems at the “other” job, i.e. people being out ill, and a general lack of employees, I’ve been filling in quite a bit. Thankfully, some awesome people have been hired, and things are easing up a bit. Time to stretch, aaahh.

With everything that has been going on, I haven’t really had time to even think about what to write. But as it’s always fun to see pictures of cats, (I know I can never get enough of them), I decided to share some kitty pics I’ve done.

When our cat gets this look on his face, well… heheh

I did this portrait some time ago, of a beloved cat named Bic. That was the name he came with when we adopted him from a shelter at the age of two. We actually thought about changing his name, but it seemed to suit him so we kept it. Bic was a very special cat, and was a legend amongst family and friends. Even people who didn’t particularly like cats, (I know, what?!) loved Bic. There was just something about him. He was smart, sweet, and playful. Years after he was gone, people would talk about him, and reminisce. So here’s to you Bicy-bear, we’ll always remember you.

Just a sketch I did of a pretty fluffers.

“Murray In Repose”

I think these ladies are going home to take care of their cats, heheh. Bye for now, hope you enjoyed this post. See you next time!

Autumn In O Town And There Abouts

As I reluctantly say goodbye to summer, I do enjoy welcoming Autumn and all the colors that come along with it. We start preparing for Fall with red and yellow mums, bunches of golden tipped wheat, and a few last fun things before the cold sweeps down from the north. Recently, we did something I’d wanted to do for some time, go on an interactive Train Robbery! Just like in the old West, Yay!

Despite the fact that I happen to live in an area that is either cold, wet, windy, snowing, or blisteringly hot, we do have some interesting things to do nearby. Heading north of us, in the little town of Milford, is a treasure called the Cooperstown and Charlotte Valley Railroad. This little gem offers rides including the Train Robbery, and Blues Express, which serves up drinks and food while you listen to some of the best Blues players around. Or so I’ve heard, I’ve yet to take this one.

What, you might ask, has this got to do with art? Well I’ll tell ‘ya ‘all. As I’ve mentioned in other posts, doing something different gets the wheels turning. And throwing in some really cool bad guys, doesn’t hurt, heheh. Also, it’s just fun. And fun should be a part of creating, in my humble opinion, at least some of the time.

Autumn bursts with bright colors, almost like nature is giving us something to burn into our retinas and store away for the graying of winter.

I’ll be heading out to ‘store some more colors’ today. I hope you get a chance to do the same. Thanks for reading my blog, see you next time!

Just a little note, I have no connection to the CCVR, or any other places I might mention on my blog, just sharing the fun. Bye-ee