As I am at the end of my first week of no wheat, no added sugar and limited black tea/coffee, I had to think of my favourite within my current options. So some steamed veggies (broccoli and zucchini) it was! The chilli sauce is a no-no in terms of the sugar but it is there for artistic reasons!
A little crazy way to start the challenge – splashing painting and using 4 different ink pens. I have no expectations or specific plans for how I will do the challenge this year. No special sketchbook, no specific technique in mind (I have done this in the past and it is a good thing to do). I am just going to incorporate the EDiM sketches into my daily sketchbook. So there is no additional goal that I am setting myself … but then again it might evolve into something different – who knows…so stay tuned!
I found it very interesting, that when I was doing my sketch of my steamed veg today, I had a number of thoughts about the ups and downs of doing EDiM. Some of the things that have worried me in past years came back, and despite my normal daily sketching habit these days, there is something special about a daily challenge that is indeed a challenge!
Anyway here are a few thoughts….
– it is good to have something that you ‘have’ to sketch each day. It makes you make the time and it makes you think about doing it during the day so that you know exactly what you will be sketching when you sit down. I believe that half the battle with sketching is making time!
– Having something that is specified for you to draw that day gives you direction. The other half of the battle with regular sketching is knowing what to draw.. finding something that will interest you! So for the month of May you have a list – the decision is made!
– I love having the full list for the month in advance so I can start planning ahead. Sometimes with online challenges and classes it is hard to fit the specific task within you duties that week, so planning ahead can really help make it easier.
– There is such incredible motivation and inspiration to be drawing the same thing on the same day as hundreds of other people around the world. So EDiM is a great way to get you pumped to sketch.
– You learn a lot from seeing other peoples approach to the same subject matter.
– You get to engage with a lot of other people… our personality comes out, not only in our lines and strokes but the objects/scenes we decide to draw for the challenge.
And now for some more serious thoughts – the battles you might have inside your head…
– A daily challenge puts the pressure on! Not only to sit down and actually do it, but for it to be ‘good enough’ to post. The fact that you have to draw something different tomorrow means that you can’t really afford the time to re-do it (either day or tomorrow). So there is a little more pressure than if you were just sketching for yourself – normally if a sketch doesn’t work you don’t have to post it. But on a daily challenge you WANT to post each day. So you have to get over this pressure and just do the best you can!
– It is harder at the beginning of the challenge – you have high expectations of what you want to do but maybe after the first few days you feel disappointed… DON’T BE… just keep sketching!
– Don’t try to achieve too much each day – if the way you want to sketch will take 2 hours a day, make sure that you can give it that amount of time or simplify what you try to achieve. It is fine to have an incomplete sketch if you run out of time. So just do what you can in the time you have!
– Don’t be afraid to post your sketch … remember we are all going through this together. We will all have good and bad days. Just post it!
– Don’t take the daily challenge to sketch too seriously!! Everyone has busy days and misses a day or two. Even if you miss a whole week, either continue at your own pace, look at combining a few of them together, or just pick up the theme for the day and go back when you have a chance. (I think the last option is the best as you will have the fun of doing it the same time as everyone else) Don’t let it become a burden! Just do it when you can!
– And… although I often think I am a cracked record… remember that we share but we don’t compare and the most important thing is to HAVE FUN!
The whole idea of Every Day In May is to get you sketching, to have lots of fun sketching together with other people!!
Okay, is that enough of a lecture for the day!?!
Those of you that have done daily challenges, what were your ups and downs? Would love to hear from you!
Final Note: This challenge has nothing to do with Urban Sketchers. It is completely independent and many of the subjects to draw are isolated objects found around the home. Theefore these sketches do not fit within the focus of USK which is all about sketching out on location, and telling a story about where we are. Some of the challenges could be ‘urban sketches’ but please don’t start posting your EDiM sketches into a USK group without checking that it fits the USK manifesto first.
Final Note 2: Also in every instance, draw from a real object or scene and not from a photo.
3 Day Travel Sketching Workshop in Launceston, October 2015 – more details here