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Will Drawing For 100 Days Help To Boost My Creativity?

Updated: Apr 5

A black book with the words '100 day drawing project' on the front lying on a wooden floor

In a desperate attempt to squeeze more drawing into my daily routine, I came across a 100 day drawing project on Katie Chappell's page and decided to give it a go. The idea is that you create 1 drawing every day for 100 days... sounds simple enough.

I kept this project analog to avoid any pressures that I might put on myself if I were to upload the drawings to social media (this also saved a LOT of editing time too). Although this did remove a bit of the accountability that sharing work can bring.

For the project I used a ring-bound Pink Pig square sketchbook* to make the work and then pulled the pages out and popped them in a drawer as I went along. I kept all the work together in the drawer until the end of the 100 days and then dug them all out for one big living room critique session. *(This is an affiliate link, see below for more information).

papers containing drawings are pulled out of a sketchbook and fill the floor space of a room
My living room critique session

I found it difficult to decide on what to draw, when there are no rules or structure, you have the whole world to choose from! That can be quite overwhelming and put a stop to the creative flow.

A coloured pencil drawing of a bottle of washing up liquid
I started with drawing random objects around the house

Going back through the drawings was like flicking through a photo album of memories, a lot can change in 100 days. Seeing the work as one big collection at the end was inspiring to see recurring themes and colours.

16 sketchbook pages are displayed using brown tape on a wall
Sketchbook pages on the studio wall

As I was looking at the pile of drawings, I remembered the 2/10 rule that my uni tutor taught me.

On average for every 10 drawings created 2 will be 'good' or at least that you'd want to use moving forwards, the other 8 can be put away for another time. Keeping this quantity over quality idea in mind, I find it helps to take a lot of pressure off the work. This makes it a bit easier to just produce work by generating a volume of content to then work from later.

sock covered feet stand next to a pile of scattered sketchbook pages

I created 55 drawings in the 100 day challenge. I was a bit disappointed that I hadn't managed to create 100 drawings but I have 55 more drawings than I did when I started and that's still a win in my eyes!

A few things that helped me:

- Set time goals.

Decide before you start drawing how long you want to spend on that particular piece of work. 2 minutes, 5 minutes, 20 minutes... sometimes it helps to set a timer too (I have a tendency to use the whole day if I'm left without time constraints).

- Set portfolio goals.

What do you want to achieve from the challenge? Do you want to produce more drawings of people / landscapes / buildings etc? Can you make a collection of inspirational photos before you start? (I have a Pinterest Board of Tiny Houses that I like to refer back to).

- Choose your weapons.

What materials will you use? Just ink? coloured pencils? will you stick to a simple colour palette for the whole challenge? Will you use a sketchbook or loose sheets of paper?

A Little Treat Just For You

I'm a big supporter of sharing work online and I think it can be really beneficial in helping others to grow too. So, I'm not just going to share my best work with you, below is my least favourite from the 100 Day Challenge. I really suffered from Fear of The White Page when I was creating this page and I really hated the outcome. I've learnt a lot from the drawing in terms of shape, composition, materials etc and I know now what I can do to improve it if I were to draw it again.

A left hand holds up a sketchbook page containing two hand drawn fish
My least favourite page

UPDATE: I uploaded my Spooktober 2020 and Inktober 2019 illustrations to Pinterest at the time that I created them, I then hid them as I hated looking back at the work. Today, as I look at the work as a starting point for ideas and those drawings were my best with the skills that I had at the time, I look at them as a body of work instead. So if you'd like to see what work I was creating a couple of years ago, here's some more.

Have you tried anything like this yet? Do you have any tips for starting a drawing challenge?

*This post includes affiliate links. Whenever you buy something through one of these, I get a small commission without any extra cost to you. This helps to support my blog, thank you.

More for you:

-TED talk by illustrator David Litchfield about his 365 day drawing challenge.

-Receive monthly inspiration straight to your inbox by joining my monthly Round Up community HERE.

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