40 Inked Cards: Inktober Wrap Up

My intention this month was to make a set of colorful, interesting cards. Check!

What I want to say is that 20 minutes each day spent with ink + watercolor paper added up to 40+ cards over about 26 days. The coolest aspect of doing a creative|art challenge is to look back at what I have created as a whole. I wanted to focus on the interplay of inks and mediums and mark-making tools and layers and all of that... and to practice feeling out how to balance quickly made marks in a coherent composition. As a self-taught artist, that is what I do. There is trial & error and experimentation and examination and a lot of figuring stuff out. 

I didn't really pay attention to this a few years ago - so I don't know if it's only the past two years but right after the index-card-a-day challenge I have this period of crazy wild idea generation. Last year during this post-ICAD period I developed two workshops! Those are huge endeavors, super intense projects. This year, during ICAD I also wrote the content and facilitated The Circle Workshop. You would think that there would be no ideas left in my head, they'd be used up. But it's the opposite. Like there are so many ideas that I cannot keep up. My challenge has always been to somehow track and contain the ideas and utilize them in my work. The ideas take me in different directions, so that's not a small task. 

To make the bases, I cut 5x8" cards from larger sheets of Strathmore 400 Series watercolor paper. The first row is 4x6" because I had five of those already cut when I decided to do this kind of work for Inktober. After I did those, I decided to go a little bigger and I'm really happy that I did. From this perspective, many look similar but what fascinates me is that while I am in the process of creating a particular card, it is fresh and new and full of potential. We used to have a Dalmatian many years ago, before Kimba, and of course she was spotted. When we got her as a puppy, the family gave us a photograph of the entire litter of puppies on a firetruck {yes, people used to do that with Dalmatians} and yes, we could tell her apart from every other polka-dotted puppy. So the cards are made up of marks and splotches and splashes and drips and dots {plus meandering words and lyrics to songs like Thunder Road} and when I look through them, they are unique and have different melodies or moods. My favorite at the moment is the card I call rainbow clouds {bottom row, second from right}. If you want to see more inked cards.

Tomorrow I've got a series of mandalas to share; I also finished making a series of ultra-miniature books, art journal pages and, well, NaNoWriMo starts today, so, you know the drill. Art is never-ending. Especially when things are falling apart, take some time to focus on something positive... keep your mind open to ideas, folks, so you notice them when they zig zag through your mind each day. The ideas are like stardust, sometimes they are hard to see, but you will find them. 

PS. I created this grid using an automated function inside Photoshop {File-Automate-Contact Sheet II} that makes a grid from selected images. 

PSS. NaNoWriMo is a creative writing challenge that takes place each November; the goal is to write 50,000 words of your novel. My goal is significantly lower; last year I wrote about 17K and was quite thrilled with that achievement! 

More posts about these inked cards.