First up, here are the rules for Inktober, pulled from the official site:
1 - Make a drawing in ink (you can do a pencil under-drawing if you want).
2 - Post it online
3 - Hashtag it with #inktober and #inktober2016
4- Repeat (you can do it daily, or go the half-marathon route and post every other day, or once a week. Whatever you decide, be consistent with it. INKtober is about growing and improving and forming positive habits, so the more you're consistent, the better.
That's it! Now go make something beautiful.
And here are a few more constraints that I set for myself :
1 - New IP only (so no Spider-man, but also no characters or ideas from personal projects)
2 - Keep the pieces small. I've been cutting a 9x12 piece of bristol down to 9x6
3 - Traditional inks only (not that I don't love digital ink, but a big part of my interest in Inktober is pushing myself to get comfortable with traditional tools)
4 - Use the official Inktober prompt list
5 - Post every day, no break.
6 - No preplanning, no pencilling images a week ahead of time, nothing. Each day I start fresh and go from there.
For the most part these haven't been an issue, but the combo formed by the first and last constraint has proven costly. I'm spending a lot of time just getting to the point where I have something to ink, which takes my focus away from experimenting with these tools. I think having a conceptual framework to work within (be that a specific story, or cast of characters, or whatever) would speed up initial ideating process significantly.
Here are a few more quick thoughts that have occurred to me over the week:
I'm slow, and I need to work on that.
I'm getting a lot more eyes on my work than I did previously (note: I do almost no self promo, so the bar is set very low)
I'm pleased with the majority of what I've produced
Constantly experimenting with my process slows me down, and prevents me from streamlining
I'm noticing an improvement in my drawing after only 7 days
I'm happy that I haven't skipped a day, but...
Staying up until 3 to finish a drawing isn't something to be proud of, and it tends to make the next day even harder to get through
I've come up with a few concepts and characters that I would be happy to return to
Ink wash is very interesting to me, but in practice I just don't enjoy it as much as b/w line
All in all, it's been a good experience thus far, and I'm already thinking about what I'll do differently in the future. I'll make some adjustments for next week and see how that goes.
Do you do anything special to make Inktober an even better experience? If so I'd love to hear about it in the comments or on social media.