Drawing Challenge Results!

When I was speaking at Quilt Con I talked a little about what I think is a little-known fact: that anyone can learn to draw, as long as they are willing to practice. I have believed for a long time that if you approach drawing the way you would approach exercise, and force yourself to do a bit of it every day, you will see results much more quickly than you might think, and that improvement will never reach a plateau. You will get better and better and better..... I got a lot of emails and questions about this theory, which prompted me to run a bit of a challenge on this blog, in which quite a few of you partook. I think the work speaks for itself (and proves me rather right, I might add.). I also loved the way a Flickr group emerged and how everyone was so supportive and encouraging. Social Networking at it's best, I'd say.

So many people drew their pets! Here's a great example from Ruth, who drew her adorable dog several times over the course of the challenge. Here is her "before and after":


And Anne Sullivan, who tackled her cats (you know what I mean there!), and compared her results. More of Anne's work (very inspiring) can be seen on the Flickr site that she set up for this challenge. This one is my favorite "before and after's", because it shows her progress so clearly.

some of my favroite work was sent in by +++, who is clearly has past experience and practice, and who rediscovered drawing through this challenge. She sent me some amazing drawings of her kids, but I'm posting this one, of her shoe, as a reminder that subjects can be found anywhere.

And if these drawings aren't enough to inspire you, I'm copying and pasting some text from some of the emails I got. So what are you waiting for?? Put a sketchbook (I like Moleskin) and a pencil (I use the cheap mechanical ones from Staples or Muji, 4B, and a kneaded eraser, which swallows those pesky little erser bits rather than leaviong them on your kitchen table) next to your coffemaker and start making drawing a part of your morning routine. Even if it's just to capture a single cheerio.

You can see more at the Flickr Site.


I've been really struggling with my identity as an artist (imposter syndrome much?) and drawing every day has really helped connect me with that identity in a way I can't really explain but I will say that it has meant a whole heck of a lot to me. I struggled with two bouts of artist's block throughout the month, and pushing myself to the other side also helped me realize that it does end, and it is possible to work through.

I just wanted to let you know how something that may have seemed like a simple challenge has really changed my life and I feel like a total dork saying it, but there it is!

That little exercise of drawing everyday gave me back my confidence and made me believe I can achieve that dream and new passion. I would like to thank you to be not only an inspiration but also helping me finding myself and trusting my abilities (thanks to the others contestant too with their amazing comments).

I loved this challenge for myself and also seeing all of the drawings on Flickr was really amazing. 
Hopefully I will manage to continue doing regular drawing now that I see how much difference it makes.