Month long initiatives for skill-building, projects, charities, and more are nothing new. One of my favorites, NaNoWriMo (National Novel Writing Month), was started back in 1999. From Movember’s mustachioed charitable funds to American Humane’s life-saving “Adopt-a-Dog” month, these challenges/awareness events create communities and make a difference.
Inktober, created by Jake Parker in 2009, is one of the more artistic and personal themes. Every October, thousands of artists create inked works for the challenge. The main intention? Personal growth in discipline and a specific medium.
On his website, illustrator Jake Parker says he started Inktober as a personal endeavor to improve his “inking skills and develop positive drawing habits.” His challenge has inspired a worldwide community, with over 3.5 million posts for #inktober on Instagram. Participants on Instagram have expanded beyond the traditional pen and paper medium to include ink washes, alcohol markers, and even tattoos.
While there is an official prompt list for 2016, there are no required subject matters. The rules Parker lists on his website are quite simple:
“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
He adds an encouraging note below these, that not completing all 31 drawings is not failure; even doing one ink sketch a week is acceptable. It’s all about self-improvement. So “the more you’re consistent [you are] the better.”
Parker includes a comprehensive list of his favorite Inktober materials as well. Curious what materials I’ll use this Inktober? See the list here. You can also see my first Inktober sketches from 2015 here.
Have you participated in Inktober? Let me know below!