I recently signed up to participate in #The 100 Day Challenge with Elle Luna & The Great Discontent. The 100 Day website defines the challenge as a celebration of process that encourages everyone to participate in 100 days of making. The great surrender is the process; showing up day after day is the goal.
A few days before the challenge began, I noticed on Facebook that a few artist friends had posted that they were planning on participating in the challenge and that was the only spark I needed to sign up myself. Before making this decision, I did not think through my schedule for the 100 days of the challenge or the actual scope of the project in which participants post a new work everyday for 100 consecutive days. I am glad that I did not because I most likely would not have signed up, missing out on one of the truly enriching art projects I have had.
I posted on both Facebook and Instagram each day and was truly humbled by the kind support of friends and followers that commented and liked my daily posts. That energy gave my the drive and confidence to continue to post each day, even when my day was crazy busy or I had a dreaded creative block. Considering the nature of this challenge, it felt great to still post even though at the time I wanted to cringe at what I posted, but ultimately, it was so liberating to just let it go--subjective "flaws" and all.
Every participant could chose their own project objective and I chose the hash-tag "LittleArtThe100DayProject". For my challenge I decided to create a postcard size, digital painting using Adobe Photoshop. For Facebook, I posted a 4x6 image and created a separate image to post on Instagram that fit in the standard square format, which sometimes required an extensive reworking of the image. To help me come up with my daily content I decided to let the alphabet guide my imagery. I averaged between 4 to 3 images for each letter, starting with the letter A and ending with Z. This also gave friends and followers a fun dialogue to help with ideas that spurred me on with every new post.
I would basically start out the same way with every new painting, I would brainstorm ideas at night before falling asleep, do a bit of research in the morning and start sketching. After sketching I would take a photo of my sketch, post it to the CLOUD and finally bring it into Photoshop to paint away with custom brushes and textures that I had previously made. There were days that I was so swamped with other obligations that I could only rework some of my older work to make it new and fit with the challenge objectives. Although, for the most part, I could finish each piece within my allotted time frame each day, there were some pieces that I worked on for a bit longer and would post the next day.
Here are the 100 paintings that I posted on Instagram starting on April 20, 2016-July 27, 2016. What a great experience!