Inking it

I missed last week’s post due to a very adverse reaction to a double dose of flu and COVID vaccinations. I had a very bizarre night’s sleep and documented it in my doodles, but I digress. But back here is actual evidence of physical progress.

Inktober 2023

I started this year’s challenge a day late and this set the marker for progress so far. I wasn’t completely sold on the prompt words. But I wanted a challenge! ???? As I had dropped other things to do it, I wasn’t going to drop it. As stated before I need a theme to guide me through the month. It just makes it more interesting to me to have to think of that narrative. This year I think subconsciously mimics life in my fevered imagination. I am not going to reveal that theme as I think that spoils the progression of the pictures.

One of the things that I have come across on Mastodon is that people are using their own prompts and even ideas for the Inktober challenge. Some of them I highlight here (face and boats). That led me to think “Actually I really don’t need to follow the crowd” and I could completely do my own thing. The point is that you just do something, in ink.

The biggest revelation to starting to use the ink pens I got is the complete lack of graduation of colour. I had just become so used to being able to select a grade and fill an object. Whereas on my drawing it is a case of black and white. I’m not sure why this didn’t register with me. Years of corruption of the iPad probably didn’t help. But I now need to think around the initial sketch and how that will transfer to the page. I start with a digital sketch on my iPad and then move to ink out the drawing in the sketchbook. I don’t feel comfortable enough to do the image directly in ink. This is probably due to the brain not realising there is no double tap. I have also been told that adding water to the ink would create a gradient. The only problem is that these pens are non-soluble. So that won’t work. However, in the stash of art materials left over from my Dad’s studio, I think I can find some “normal” black ink. Amongst the many things that he did was calligraphy. So there has to be. But that will not be for this project. Also mentioned was a water wash pen. Something else to explore at my local art shop.

The actual process of drawing is a surprise too. It might be that the page size is too small, but I find that although I am doing both drawings in the same ratio(ish) that the page always seems to compress the drawn one. Let’s face it, I have been doing this for less than a week. It feels like a toddler picking up their very first crayon.

It is a very informative experiment. It is solidifying in my mind certain things I would like to try after completing the thirty-one days. I just have to be careful of the shiny syndrome. Do not get distracted by all sorts of other mediums. There is so much to explore out there, but not enough time.

The first attempt at inking my ideas


I have been putting the pictures from #Inktober23 up on my Ko-Fi page as I wanted another space for them to exist. I can’t remember if I said previously, but I had my first real-life internet dollar gifted to me by a talented sketcher Alisa. I like the simplicity of KoFi, but they all seem to be diverging into the same spaces. But at the moment the benefits of all these platforms are hypothetical as one needs an audience to show one’s things to. I hope over the course of the next year that I can grow as an artist and be able to show others that it is possible to go from nothing to something. Ultimately, it really just boils down to what you get enjoyment out of. But if you do read my blog I would appreciate some eyes on my Ko-fi page as there will be things there in the future that will not be elsewhere.

What I am watching, listening to, or reading

I have been watching all sorts of stuff on YouTube and I came across this the other day. Although I have no interest now in learning an instrument or music theory. I find Rick Beato’s interviews fascinating. This particular one stuck with me. For its charm, behind the scenes I guess, and the genuineness of Dominic Miller. Controversially, I preferred Sting after The Police. But I hadn’t realised Miller’s background.

Finally on a somewhat jokey and tongue-in-cheek aside, from a video I watched via Rich Roll where he interviewed Arnold Schwarzenegger primarily about the new book he mentions a podcast called Arnold’s Pump Club. No in no way am I going to become a bodybuilder. But I did want to explore what he had to say about health and fitness. Again an interesting rabbit hole to go down and something that has reignited my desire to improve my health regime. What has this got to do with Art? On the face of it nothing, but health and well-being feeds into one’s ability to be creative. Well, it does in my limited knowledge of the mind and body.

One picture

Until next time…

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