Inktober Postmortem

Inktober Postmortem

Okay let’s look at the goals I set for myself.

  • Making a “finished” drawing every day.
  • Be drawing a heck of a lot of hornedworms.
  • upload these drawings every day, or at least once a week.
  • tweet about these drawings every day, or at least once a week.

So I fell short of my goal of participating every day, but I did complete a drawing for 22 out of 31 days. I feel pretty good about that considering I was also adjusting to having four hours (or more on homework days) of my day taken up by my new Swedish language lessons. I remember now why I avoided class schedules that had me going to school every day when I was in university: Being around people is exhausting and I take way to long to recover from it, regardless of whether I was having a good time or not.

Next goal. “Be drawing a heck of a lot of hornedworms.” This was a resounding success. I have drawn so many good worms. A+

How did I do on my upload rate? I seem to have managed slightly more than once a week, but not quite every day. Generally weekends were my weakest time.

Similarly I managed to get all of my works posted to Facebook, but I had a much harder time tweeting about all of them. I think part of this is that I actually had a community of other artists on facebook to commiserate with. I was usually excited to share there, as opposed to twitter which felt like exposing myself to the great mysterious void and tempting fate just waiting for the trolls to show up and tell me how I’m inktobering wrong. That last bit never happened, so I guess that part of the anxiety was disproportionate. However I think this is really telling that I still haven’t really figured out how to interact on twitter yet. I don’t really know what I want to say there, what I want my “brand” to be so to speak.

Over all, I think I made great strides to meeting my goals for a first attempt. I certainly learned some things about myself. Now some general thoughts about the whole process:

I bailed out on several of the weekends due to how exhausted I was from essentially trying to maintain two part time jobs (my art and my school)… especially since some days I was so into what I was drawing that I was not able to keep myself to short hours. I ended up working a few 12+ hour days. I think this is a place where inktober works at cross purposes to the things I need to practice. I felt such an intense pressure to get my art posted within a single 24 hour period that I did not take enough care of my health, both physically and mentally. Thankfully all of my ailments were minor, but I did experience basically all of the stress induced issues that I used to only get during midterms and finals at university… All month.

On the plus side sharing my art regularly with deviantart and facebook was Really motivating and reassuring. I draw a bit on the slow side, especially when I set a complex composition for myself… which are the kinds of things I love to draw. And I am super susceptible to the self doubt that creeps in when I go a while without any feedback on what I’m working on. These things combine to mean that I have often gone very long periods with nothing that I feel is “good enough” to share with folks, and thus long periods without feedback, resulting in a mess of nasty thoughts about myself and my work. So even though I pushed myself too hard for this Inktober, I am really glad I participated. I was able to reach out and connect with other artists, friends, and family, and that really helped ground my motivations and give me more strength to fight off my brain spiders… at least regarding making art. Brain spiders are awfully tenacious jerks.

I think next year I may reduce my goals to better reflect the time I need to work on multiple projects and take care of myself. But I am definitely going to be giving this another go.

Thanks to everyone who went on this journey with me. 
To you and everyone else I wish you, as always:
Love & Peace