Blogging has been hard for me lately, but making art has not been. I got a slow start at the #inktober drawing challenge that is happening online. Mostly on Instagram. I draw in ink daily, but not the polished masterpieces that I see using that hashtag. Intimidated I didn't post much early in the challenge. But as I continue filling up a sketchbook with ink drawings my confidence grows as my need to be "the best" shrinks. Perfectionism and a low opinion of myself and my work has been my excuse to not push myself for too long. No room for perfectionism this month. Getting out a drawing a day for #inktober. Some were good but many more of them were mediocre or worse and that is okay. It was the act of making them every day for an extended period of time and the accountability of putting them out in the world that mattered. Now the month and challenge are nearly finished and I have my big Doodle Book nearly filled. Then it is on to the next challenge to stretch and push myself.
A few weeks ago after getting my bag was stolen I purchased a sketchbook that I ended up not loving. The paper is decent but not great and it doesn't open flat. Plus when not on sale it is fairly expensive. My options were to throw it out, give it to my daughters or find a way to use it myself. It has become my Doodle Book and warmup sketchbook. In the morning and sometimes at night I draw something usually simple just to get my brain and hand linked up and ready to spend the day together. No sense in filling the sketchbook that I use as a visual journal with these usually pretty silly drawings and notes. I won't be replacing this sketchbook once it is full, but I do like the idea of a Doodle Book for warmups and casual drawing.
This cheerful little girl certainly helps whenever I am feeling down or stressed. Her copy next to mine. Another series to work on together? In the meantime I am going back and continuing to work on our last series of fantastical creatures designed by her and refined by me. Some of those are coming out on the blog and on Etsy later this week. Taking a break from them to work on other projects was a good idea as I learned from these other projects. Learning comes from all sorts of areas in life. Schooling, books, experiences and time all influence me equally.
Don't tell anyone but I think the whole Zentangle thing is kind of silly. But I still enjoy making them and they are proving to be a great way to get myself drawing and get ideas started when I don't know what to draw. And I don't know what to draw surprisingly often. My good ideas often come at very bad times when I can't sketch them down or pin down the idea in any way. And with my life and brain being what it is if I don't pin it down somehow the idea is soon gone. But keeping a sketchbook and drawing these Zentangles can sometimes tease the ideas out of my brain. They have enough structure in the form that I can just pick it up at any moment and draw without having a plan. That is why I keep doing them.