My first Inktober

Inktober, if you’re not familiar with it (which I wasn’t until about 6 weeks ago), is one of those online group challenges where you get a prompt each day for a month – in this case to produce an ink drawing. I don’t tend to lack inspiration, but I like the idea of responding to themes set by someone else, so decided to have a go – it’s good commission practice, and the discipline of an art every day is useful too, especially when busy with other things. Seeing other participants’ contributions was interesting too. Some undoubtedly sketched out responses in advance (all the prompts are posted before the month begins) and produced highly technical professional pieces, to some extent as advertising as links to their own pages (illustrators and comic-book artists) were included. And why not. Others are hobbyists, and a few (like myself) are artists more broadly i.e. not specialising in ink drawing.

On some days, I only had a few minutes to do a quick conceptual sketch – on others, I could spend some proper time creating a finished piece. For some reason, those that featured fish seemed to work best – maybe the influence of David Attenborough’s new Blue Planet 2! Some, such as the melting diamond, gave me the seed of an idea that I hope to work on to produce a fully developed piece. Others forced me to become creative to avoid cliches – ‘juicy’ in particular if I wanted to avoid fruit, tongues, sex… I also found ‘trail’ tricky if I wanted to avoid paw/footprints, and so I went for a unicornfish pooping a trail of glitter (naturally). Anyhow, the outcome was 31 drawings in 31 days (all straight-to-ink, no preliminary sketch/pencils), and a thoroughly enjoyable challenge. Here’s a gallery of just a few of them (full set here).

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