I’m really excited to announce that Marc Taro Holmes and I are hosting another One Week 100 People challenge this year: 6-10 March 2023. This is the seventh year that we have hosted this event.
The goal is to sketch as many people as you can in 5 days either from life or from photos and see if you can reach 100. You can do this any way you like – simple pencil/pen drawings are totally fine (and in fact for the first few years of this challenge I didn’t add any colour).
The idea is simply to push yourself to do more people sketching than you would normally do. There is something special about striving for a big goal of 100 people sketches!
Find out more about the challenge on Marc’s blog here.
Last year I managed to do 100 people in one sitting and doing some simple line drawings like this is a great way to approach this challenge (of course spread over the full week!)
If you post your work to Instagram please use the hashtags #OneWeek100People and #OneWeek100People2023 – I’m going to be hanging out on Instagram (plus publishing articles here on the blog of course!)
Depending on how much spare time I have during the week I hope to do some research as well. And I’ll definitely be doing some practice sessions before the 6th of March. I haven’t been doing much sketching around crowds lately (the Village Green in the early morning and Lane Cove National Park are both pretty quiet locations) so I’m really looking forward to getting back to some regular people sketching.
Here are some tips for doing this challenge:
- Hitting 100 is not that important – the goal is simply to push yourself to sketch more than you would normally. But if you want to try for the 100 consider including some simple line drawings in the mix.
- The challenge has always officially been for 5 days (makes a nice goal of 20 per day) but if you need to extend the time period, or start early that is completely fine.
- Sketches can be done from photos and do not need to be done on location – though the scavenger hunt list is for sketches done out on the streets 🙂 And of course, if you are part of an Urban Sketchers group make sure your sketches comply with their guidelines before posting your work to the group.
- Your sketches do not need to be done in colour or include the full figure. You could even consider doing some blind contour drawings as warm-up on the first day.
- Working small helps as does drawing with a pencil.
- Drawing people on location is hard! Don’t be discouraged by the results on the first day… just keep going and you’ll be surprised by the work you are doing at the end of the week. The overall collection of your sketches will be impressive!
- The goal is to have fun! Sketching people on location can be a little scary at times, but I always find that doing this challenge (and having my pages filled with lots of people sketches) always does a lot for my confidence. If anyone stops to talk to you, tell them about the challenge and chances are that they will cheer you on!
- How to include people in your urban sketches (2020)
- Tips for sketching people in public (2019)
- Researching facial features (2020)
- Watercolour skin colour mixes (2020)
- Sketching People: My Strategy (2107)
- Sketching People Part 1: This year’s progress (2017)
- Sketching People Part 2: My breakthrough (2017)
- Sketching People Part 3: Advice (2017)
- Watercolour On Location – Lesson 3
- Edges – Lesson 2 (Bonus Material)
I always have SO much fun doing this challenge. I generally spend a lot of time in my local cafe and actively get the cafe staff involved! They know what I’m doing and constantly check on my progress and this means that I laugh a lot while I’m doing my 100 people.
Will you be joining us this year?
I may just try this year! I’ve shied away from this challenge since it started (has it really been seven years!?) I did try once two years ago, thought I was dreadful, but now I look back on those sketchbook pages I find them charming and the memories are vivid and welcome. That’s a valuable lesson for me and my inner critic! Ha!
You’ve convinced me Jamie!
Yes! I’ll be on a beach vacation that week. No better place and time to draw people.
You’re right about that Pam! I love sketching at the beach. The poses are great, and there’s lots of stationary figures to choose from! Happy sketching
I’m definitely going to try this this year. Liz is so inspiring! I sketch everyday because of Liz’s motivation. I’m very excited to take part in this. ???
Yay! glad you are joining Liana!
I did this once a few years ago and loved it—got my 100 people! I felt kind of “been there, done that” last year but I’m jumping in again this year. I need the push to get out of my house, too easy staying alone these days. I’m excited about it too!
Glad you are joining again Ann! This challenge is always worthwhile – even if we’ve done it before!
I’ve always been afraid of sketching people – they always look stiff and like they belong on a warning sign! 🙂 But I have learned enough from Liz to believe that by practicing AND reflecting on my practice AND doing some due diligence in the research department, I will have grown in some way during the event…so, challenge accepted! I’m excited!
So glad you are joining Crystal! And yes, I’ve drawn many stiff people too! 🙂
Thanks Liz! I’ve started sketching people again as I’ve been travelling and find it’s great to do while waiting for a train or bus. I may not post, but it’s also a great goal to focus on for my March sketching. I definitely need more practice on faces and mouths in particular. Tricky to get them looking ok in just a few lines! I had a goal this year of doing some sort of sketching every day and have stuck to it so far. My confidence has improved a lot with daily practise.
Great to hear Gill!
I’m on schedule. Goal to do 20 per day and I’ve just finished 40 as the 2nd day ends.
Well done Jani!
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