I’ve decided to join the 100 day project. I have about 20 days done now. I thought I’d take a few moments to reflect on the project and my current progress. So, in order to ensure that I’m doing the project, I numbered each page in a small Cannon sketchbook full of mixed media paper. I leave it on my kitchen table along with my favorite set of watercolors, pen, water brush and some assorted pens and markers. I have a blank page ready for each morning. While I eat my breakfast, I do a quick sketch or hand lettering or watercolor in my sketchbook. I’m not looking for anything polished in anyway. I’m not using digital art. I think it’s important to just get something down. As a result I have drawn or painted everything from Aquaman to an Old Bay Spice jar. I post the picture right away on Instagram. When I go on vacation in a couple months I think I will bring correctly numbered pages with me. That way I won’t have the bulk of another notebook.
I've written about motivation. I find it very helpful to have a daily task to post on Instagram. Lately, I started the 100 days project. I began doing a sketchbook page each day. Then, inspired by other artists in my MATS Bootcamp class, I began doing an alphabet page each day. I am currently on M already! Each page is done in Jane Davenport watercolor. I am painting a type of fruit of veg for each day! My favs so far are asparagus and guava! It has been so much fun! I've been sharing on my facebook page Christine Benda Illustration and my Instagram by the same name. I should also say that I am loving Bootcamp! I've never done it before. There is an assignment a month. Last month was roses on a gardening themed journal with a quote. I can't wait for June's assignment!
I spent the month of December doing a watercolor each day. I learned a lot about myself during that time. I've learned that has become increasingly difficult to take time to do my art. I'm not sure if it's because I'm not taking a class or if the pressures of teaching are taking over or if I'm watching too much tv. I'm not sure. I will say that somethings have helped. Posting my work on Instagram helps. I also wrote my own prompt sketchbook. I labeled every page of my new sketchbook with a thing to draw or paint and did a page a day. I did good at that during most of January. I even ordered business cards, postcards and stickers with some of my work. Now I have to figure out who to send these to. I guess I feel a little lost at what to work on next with my art. Do you ever feel that way?
In the beginning of the school year, my art time is very limited. We are entering our 5th week of class. As a first grade teacher, I'm just beginning get my head above water. Last week was the first time that I've sat down with my watercolors for a while. It felt good to get out the brush and water and let it move around on the paper. There is something so therapeutic to watercolors. Today I finally got back onto my webpage and worked through some of the things I'd wanted to do here. I have new things I still need to add but I made a start. Next month I am beginning a children's book illustration class with Lilla Rogers. I am so excited for this class! I am trying to decide if I want to take another online class through CalArts. Maybe just one class is a good idea for the fall.
Watercolor wasn't my favorite. I couldn't control it. It was too wet or too dry or not the right color. It's taken awhile but I finally like watercolor. In the midst of a crazy week at school, I have found that I am craving getting that brush in my hand at the end of the day. My brain doesn't get to rest from the day but a different side of my brain clicks in. I can hear my inside voice trying to make sense of my work. I think my left brain is trying to verbalize what my right brain is already doing. Is the paint the right shade? Do I need more shadow? What if I try a little white? It's so fun! And in a short time I have a little watercolor doodle. Check them out on Instagram at cb4drawing