Inktober, au revoir!

Awwwww,  it came, it went. T’was fun while it lasted. A sweet romance, a hot night of passion, a–okay enough of the similies,  metaphors, whatevzez. 

So a few bits of newsy bites for those who are dumb enough kind enough to read my blog vomit. 

This post will be about my Inktober experience, for the most part. But I also wanted to announce that I plan very much so to annoy you all with an increase in blog vomit. I have much to talk about and many topics I have accumulated in my odd, old noggin, during my last few months of mostly radio silence. So don’t think I’ve forgotten about this blog or have left it to waste away and die like that bloke in my basement. 

Did I say that out loud?

Moving on! 

On another unexpected note, I have rekindled my desire for writing. Yes! Books that is. Of the fictional variety. You may not be aware of this but before I had this blog and rekindled (this has become my new favourite word)  my artsy ways, I had been writing quite seriously for two or three years. 

Then I went on a break around the time I was pregnant with my baby son (now eleven months old). I guess I gave up for a while because I was fed up. The problem with a passion is reality can poison your enjoyment of it. Whether that reality be people, arguments, disappointment, unmet expectations or just emotional, mental, physical tiredness. 

So for many reasons,  I gave it a holiday and without meaning to, I filled that creative hole with art. And now I’m hoping to do both simultaneously. Kinda exciting but I’m not setting myself deadlines and doing both several hours a day. I have kids and responsibilities. Sigh. 

So, expect some more writing related bloggings.

Back to Inktober! 

Did you do it? Did you stick to it? 

Did I?  Ha, did I heck. Stick to it,  that is. 

Okay I drew throughout the month, doodling much more than I ever have since starting drawing back up last year. But I didn’t stick to following the prompts given by the official Inktober page. Or the Medtober prompts created by Ahmed Aldoori. To be fair,  he only did about four of his own prompts (less than I did) and was barely active on instagram or anywhere else. And it was HIS list. So I think you can let me off for that. 

I did about ten or fifteen of the Inktober prompts and plenty of my own doodles, all of which got a favourable response. 

It was never about doing the prompts, all of them and on time. No,  it was about DRAWING. Drawing to practice, to improve, to learn something. And I did. Plenty. 

The most important thing I think that was achieved from October doodling was that I learned what I like and what I don’t. 

I like my backgrounds white, my doodles bold, clear and crisp. I like to use colour but I didn’t use much colour during this time,  and discovered I enjoy the black and white sketching just as much. 

I got comfy on my shading and hatching style. 

I also didn’t rely so much on reference and found myself braver, which allowed me more freedom to express myself, without fear of making errors. Usually with proportions or anatomy. It didn’t matter, I’d just draw it again,  and if I still struggled,  THEN I’d look for a reference. I’d practice with it a few times and then I’d sketch again freely. And it dramatically improved my artwork. 

I found that the drawings I did using a reference seemed stiffer and less vibrant than the one I did after without the reference. That taught me to be more confident in my skills. That despite my inexperience and errors, I am actually quite good at breathing life into my drawings when left freely to do so. 

I also learnt a lot more about photography. My learning curve has gone up significantly thanks to all the blogs and lessons I’ve read about taking photos, filters, lighting, techniques etc. And this month it has improved more so as I now know how to best display my artwork. Especially my doodles that are all clumped together in my sketchbook. 

Basically, I took a picture of a girl like this… 

And edited it so that it looked like this… 

It’s cleaner and neater and it’s a style I really like. It also means that I can sketch doodles close together in my sketchbook and just remove the unwanted bits later using Snapseed–which is becoming one of my favourite and most needed editing app. I’ll do a post about how I edit my photos in the future. 

So, not only did I discover how I like to display artwork and how to achieve that with simple editing apps, I’ve also discovered more about my style and where I want to take it.  

I like clear, bold, simple, bright. Of course, when it comes to full page art, whether that be digital or traditional, there won’t be that white background and obvious focal point, but I know at least how I’d like to display such images in my feed to keep my desired clean theme. 

I’ve learnt more on both my art page (@amylouillustrations)  and my book, food and calligraphy page (@amylounaturiful)–I’ll talk more about the latter in another post–when it comes to feed themes. What kind of theme I want to have for my gallery. Tone, filters, colours etc. It took some time to decide as I like so many different styles. I’m indecisive by nature and change my style more than the seasons change in England but if I do change my mind later, I have an idea of how to transition from one theme (bright, bold, lots of white) to another (warm,  hazy,  orange tones). 

All in all, Inktober for me this year was a success. I did gain a lot more followers. And a lot of picture likes and comments too. I met some new, awesome people and it was truly fun. I also picked up positive habits and harnessed my inner style. I feel like I’m getting there. 

And whilst I’m currently drawing for the hell of it, because I enjoy it and not for my audience so that I’m stressing about what they’ll think, but still being mindful of them–this entire journey is to get me prepared for using my skills professionally. Whatever job that may be and wherever that may take me. I have plans and hopes of where to go, but right now, I’m just along for the ride. And it’s so much more fun when you let your fears go and stop caring so much about others. 

It’s nice to just be me. 

*swings from trees*

*laughs*

*crack*

*falls*

AGHHHH! 

*CRASH*

Oof! 

I’m okay. That last branch was cracked already. Nothing to see here. Move along. 

*waves*

*rubs bruised bottom*

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