#OneWeek100People2022: Day 1

March 7, 2022 | 11 Comments

Day 1 of the OneWeek100People challenge is always a little hard – particularly if I haven’t been sketching people much. (Which is definitely the case this year!) I normally say that the first day is about establishing a rhythm and that was the case again today.

I have the goal of doing two 100s – one from photos at home (simply ink drawings) and one done on location (with watercolour). The at-home sketches are important as research and for the development of skills, while the on-location sketches show me the aspects that I need to work on. Today I did 20 at-home sketches – the first 10 were done as warm-up before my morning coffee.

I enjoyed doing the warm-up sketches but really struggled during my first cafe sketching session as I changed too many variables! These were:

  • I went to a different cafe  (I normally do most of this challenge at Goodfields) and not only were there not as many people to sketch, but I also wasn’t sitting at a table with a good view.
  • I was testing a different technique (using different pens)
  • I was working too small
  • I was using a different palette (I’ve been experimenting with rearranging my pans and that threw me a little this morning)

In the afternoon I went out to Goodfields and intentionally went back to my go-to way of doing this challenge. The goal for this session was simply to get comfortable sketching people on location and by the end of 1.5 hours I was feeling much more at ease. And the main reason for this was the fact that I was constantly interacting with the cafe staff and other patrons… and oh! I just feel more comfortable these days sketching paint first and using a fude pen!

The best part of this challenge is definitely the interaction with people! I’m never very happy with most of my sketches but always receive so much encouragement that it really motivates me to continue. When I sketch in Goodfields I know that I will constantly have staff check on my progress and try to guess which person I was sketching. It adds a bit of pressure for sure, but we are laughing so much that the results don’t matter… the experience itself is just SO MUCH FUN!

Other thoughts:

The only way to get comfortable sketching on location and in particular sketching moving people is simply to continue doing it!

It’s really easy to feel discouraged when you start sketching people so I think that one of the real benefits of this challenge is to push through the ‘discouraged phase’. It’s easy to feel like giving up after the second or third sketch, but when the goal is 20 sketches per day, you just have to keep going. And then the collection of 20 sketches becomes a real achievement that you become proud of!

I’m not going to bother about the scavenger hunt until later in the week. For now, I just want to focus on getting in the groove again.

Hmm… if I count all the sketches I did today I hit 60! Note: I did nothing else until 4pm!

How did Day 1 go for you?


  • Ceri Donovan says:

    I am amazed I have managed to sketch 20 faces today, especially as I NEVER draw people! I figured if I did two lots of 10, with a 3 minute time limited for each face, that made it much more manageable, especially using the quick poses website where you can set a timer for each face! Not sure all 20 look that human, but it was fun trying!

    • maria bergman says:

      Could you direct me to the “quick poses website”?

      • Ceri Donovan says:

        You can find the website here https://quickposes.com/en – you can chose to do timed or untied poses, faces or full body poses, be aware that it was designed for life drawing, so make sure you choose the clothed option, otherwise you will get nude photos!

  • Susanna says:

    I’m doing the challenge for my 1st time and it’s taking a good bit of courage because I’m way-way out of my comfort zone sketching people, plus it’s been quite awhile because of Covid restrictions. It would be much easier for me if the challenge was 100 buildings (thanks to the recent Buildings course)!!
    Still…on this Day 1, I managed to draw 17 people in about 2 hrs at the only cafe that’s open with seating. Only 83 people to go! 🙂

  • Tina Koyama says:

    I’m still not comfortable being indoors (especially at eating/drinking establishments), so I chose to freeze my fingers off at the light rail station… but it felt so good to be drawing people from life again! I am totally rusty, but I have sorely missed this the past 2 years. I’m just happy that this challenge pushed me out the door to do it. If I get 100 (47 so far), that’ll just be a bonus!

  • I think it is easier after the first few sketches of people are done because we sort of set a rhythm. My sketching location for Day 1 was a shopping mall. I knew I could find enough people to get a big number of sketches done as I moved from Barnes & Noble to the food court and then outside the Apple Store. I stopped at #43 but probably could have kept going. I always enjoy doing this challenge. It forces me to just go for it when I’m sketching.

  • Sophie G says:

    My first time ever and I never draw people.. Crazy busy with work, I’ve started late.on Wed. Also not able to go out, I resorted to use Lynne Chapman’s book for practicing and also sketching people from Zoom meetings… At this point any people sketch is a win for me… done 10 today.
    I also need to work smaller for speed and probably set a time limit for each…

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