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!

My Growing Body Of Work

There is something that has occasionally been on my mind; my increasing “body of work”, or my “oeuvre” to be more professional. I consider myself a working artist. And although I sell my fair share of paintings, I find that sometimes my creativity outpaces my output, so to speak.

When this happens, I will sometimes try to curb my creativity a little. This only works for a short time as apparently I tend to be somewhat compulsive about creating art. I then try to focus more on getting my work “out there”. But as any artist knows, this isn’t always the answer either. I often wonder what to do. What do other creatives do?

The three photos above, are from a series of paintings I had done that I had entitled “Horse Power”. It was a series of large (3′ x 2′) oil paintings I had done of vintage automobiles and horses. I did sell these three. Yay! I think that having made them as a series and having marketed them as such may have helped. I had sold two of the horse paintings from this series as well. I want to mention here that I by no means painted them specifically to market them this way. I love and appreciate both horses and vintage and other cars, so painting them is something I both wanted to do and enjoyed doing.

Above left to right are “Axle”, (who has a bitter sweet back story that you can read on my Etsy add for him), “A Nice Day for a White Dress”, and “Basil” (who is a personal favorite of mine). In the second row, left to right are “Sade” “Fire” and “Sherman” These pieces are all 3′ x 2′ and are ready for their forever home. They can be purchased by clicking on “shop” which will bring you to my sale site. (A little side note; I noticed that when viewed on a cell phone, that the above photos are not in the same order as viewed on a laptop. There are three rows on phones so in that order they are; 1st row; Axle, A Nice Day For a White Dress, 2nd row; Basil and Sade, and 3rd row; Fire and Sherman).

So, selling as a series is one option, Another is getting your inventory together, and having enough prints made to set up a tent at open air festivals and markets. Every aspect of which, is extremely time consuming, and may possibly add to the issue. :/

I want to say, that the other reasons I personally want to sell more of my work. (aside from feeding my family, heheh ), is space, which I only have so much of. And the fact that, (and I don’t want to be morbid), but I won’t be around forever and I don’t want to leave things for my family to have to take care of. But also, and this is a big one for me, and it’s not ego, I want people to not only see, but to personally have and enjoy my work. It’s important to me, I care about it, and I’d like others to do so also.

I have heard of other artists who have “liquidation” sales. I find this term cheapens our work. I’ve also heard of artists who will actually throw away or even destroy some of their work to “make room” or “move on to their next projects”! The thought of this is beyond distressing to me! One thing I have done in the past that helps open up space, is to have my work “on loan” at local venues. I’m sure there are other options that may be of interest to artists. If you have any other ideas, let me know, so we can share!

Thanks for stopping by, see you next time!