Inktober 2018 – how to survive

September 26th, 2018 / Illustrations Basics
Inktober 3… 2… 1… Start!

What exactly is inktober and what is the deal with all this fuss?

In 2009, Illustrator Jake Parker created a 31-day challenge involving everyday ink drawing throughout October. The assumptions and rules for this initiative are actually only 4:

  • the drawing should be made with ink
  • it should be made available on the network
  • with the hashtag #inktober and # inktober2018
  • and you should repeat it every day of October

In addition, to help at least partially deal with the problem of “I do not know what to draw” and support the creativity of the challenge participants, Jake Parker places every year in September a list of inspirational themes for each day. You do not have to stick to it strictly, but in my opinion inventing pictures for prompts from the list is very stimulating for your brain.

inktober inspirations Turdus Concept

What gives Inktober?

As it was mentioned at the beginning, we become acquainted with the new medium which is ink and build the habit of drawing every day. On the other hand, for people who already have it intensely developed there’s no such thing like too much of creativity.

My first Inktober was the one from two years ago and I did not endure to the end ( later on about the reasons), and despite this I developed incredibly through this month. Earlier, I did not use ink with some staggering frequency, now it’s my favorite medium. I use both plain black ink and drawing, color inks. I remember my first shaky lines on October 1, 2016 and how gradually they became more certain and fluent with the end of October. Although I have quite a trained hand, each of the art materials requires a slightly different approach. After Inktober I did not start drawing every day, but I certainly increased the frequency of sketching. Last year, I got halfway. I not only made illustrations, but I still wanted to start recording with YT and it was probably a bit too much. Too many new activities. Later in the year, I started to draw even more often and now I draw on a daily basis for almost 100 days now on. May this year’s Inktober not break this good streak.

How to prepare?

The preparation is not all about materials. To make the pictures it is enough to use any ink and brush or pen with ink (with a brush tip or liner) or even a plain pen (e.g. with ballpoint) I use alternately all listed for a variety of lines. I dilute the ink from the jar with water to obtain a tonal transition.

Inktober Turdus Concept

What is more important than the materials is planning the time for the inktober, preparing the workplace and mental preparation. Two years ago, I did not make it to the end of the challenge (I couldn’t manage to make 3 more pictures) because I burn out. At the very beginning I made false statement: “what is one drawing a day, let’s draw two” and I tried to start an inktober simultaneously with one of many online 30-day challenges. It was not a good idea. Besides, I did not have the time planned during the day when I would draw, so other duties pushed the ink drawing to the end of the day, what is the easiest way to give up and not draw at all. In the same way last year, as I mentioned, I took too much. This time I will come to it with more calmness and moderation.

This year I have been implementing the advice of the artist, Bobby Chiu, to create a space conducive to creativity (so as to have a prepared workplace, where you can sit and draw / paint at any time), eliminate distracting factors and build a habit of everyday creation. It gives amazing results, but it requires consistency and planning in time.

One more tip at the end: try to not omit days. Two years ago I was trying to make up for 5 days at a time as a result of what I was overtired and once I flooded everything with ink inadvertently. It’s better to create one, even a small illustration everyday …

inktober flood Turdus Concept

At the end of the inktober I will make the post of how it went. Let me know if you plan to start your adventure with this challenge this year and possibly what are your experiences from previous years 🙂