Inktober 2020

Getting drawn back to art.

Inktober has always been an exciting concept for me. Created in 2009 by Jake Parker, Inktober challenges artists to create an ink drawing every day for the entire month of October. Each day has a predetermined subject to draw and most years have a theme with their subject matter. It has since grow to the point where many artist will make their own Inktober schedule and share it online to encourage others to participate in their theme as well. After many years of following, this year was the first year I decided to try my hand at it.

Drawing/doodling is something that I always greatly enjoyed when I was younger. My class notes always contained drawings in the empty spaces and I had several sketch books filled with larger drawings at home. Having had no formal training in the subject, my style always took a more cartoony look as it was more a way to relax during the day.

My main motivation for trying my hand at Inktober this year came from the sudden realization that I had let my hobby slip away from me. My focus over the past 3 years had been largely in career growth (specifically with online skills) and with it I had left paper, and the empty space that always welcomed a doodle, behind. So pen in hand, and sketchbook in the other, I set out to try hand at it.

For my drawings I decided to use the Folktober theme as posted by user @Ashton.Alexandra on instagram. I found her list through a bigger list of themes posted by another artist I follow. I was drawn to the fall feel that each day offered and it felt like a good place to start.

A collection of drawings from Inktober 2020.

Images lifted from my moleskin and arranged with Photoshop. Not too bad for a ~3 year hiatus.

In the end I only ended up making it 19 out of the 31 days. Not practicing had thrown me off more than I had expected. It took me longer to go from pencil to ink than it use to take. That said, it was super fun getting back into drawing!

The first day I was definitely hesitant on where to start. I drew up several version of the cicada (mid left side pictured above) before remembering my goal was getting back into drawing instead of focusing on making something “perfect.” From there it became something to look forward to. Each day I found myself getting excited at the challenge of coming up with a drawing idea. Some days I had a real clear thought from the start and other days I had to really think about it. The whole experience was definitely a challenge, but a welcome one.

I 100% plan to try again next year. This reminder of taking the time to do something I love, for my own sake, was a nice change of pace and I hope to make all 31 days next year.