THE DIGITAL DREAM WEEK TWELVE

The 75 day Digital Dream art challenge is done, complete. BOOM! I can’t believe I pulled it off to be honest; I learnt so much, so much about myself, and so many new art skills. As always however, let’s get started by looking at this weeks stuff :

DAYS 69 TO 75

STUDY EXERCISES

STUDY EXERCISES

DAY 69 • lilSOPHiE SKETCH – STARTING TO ADD CEL SHADING
Let there be light … albeit a bit messy lol

Started experimenting with cel shading today; wanted to see if doing it with multiply layers and opacity settings would work.

It appears it will :)

It’s actually quite simple to do, but I need to improve my understanding of how lighting works; that’s the hardest bit, working out where the shadows should be.

DAY 70 • lilSOPHiE SKETCH – PRACTICING CEL SHADING
I did a new lilSOPHIE today but she’s a bit shy, so she’s hiding :)

Instead, here’s some more cel shading practice from today, using the day 56 drawing

Working out lighting without reference is so hard; It’s a bit like  puzzle really :)

Totally different challenge to anything I’ve ever done before, you actually have to use your brain lol

DAY 71 • lilSOPHiE AFFIRMATION
‘THE BEAUTIFUL TRUTH’

THE UGLY BEAUTIFUL TRUTH :)

lilSOPHIE is transgender and normally wears a wigs, but I captured this sketch of her earlier today, as she was making her way to a photoshoot lol

I think she looks beautiful :)

One of the purposes of life I feel, is to reach a point where you fully accept yourself, just the way you are.

Me and her are both trying to reach that place

DAY 72 • MANGA KITTY – KEVY
Where did KEVY go?

I haven’t drawn him for about three weeks, but he came back today :)

This one’s unfinished … but it was nice to draw him again.

Tomorrow I’m at the Gender Clinic, so it’ll be a pencil sketching on the train day.

DAY 73 • lilSOPHiE PENCIL SKETCH
Legs :)

I think in years time, lilSOPHiE is going to look totally different.

Experimented with longer legs today, kinda like the PaintBrushGirl I drew on day 25 … I think I like it :)

No eyes, super long legs, not abiding by the Chibi rules … lilSOPHiE is totally different to how I thought she’d be when I started this challenge, but I’m just letting her become whatever she wants to be :)

DAY 74 • lilSOPHiE PENCIL THUMBNAILS
One Of Those Days

I did page after page of little sketches on the bus this morning, and was so excited to go home and turn one into a digital sketch.

Silhouettes, cast shadows, intense lightning; in my head it looks cool … I just couldn’t get onto the computer to do it.

I still showed up and sketched though, which was the best I could do today :)

DAY 75 • lilSOPHiE AND KEVY HAPPY CHRISTMAS
And That’s A Wrap…

…a lilSOPHiE style Christmas wrap :)

This is actually the last day of the challenge! Oii, stop cheering lol I can’t believe I actually pulled this off you know, 75 days; I’ve learnt so so much, it’s insane. Not just art related, but personal stuff too … like where my limits are in terms of hustling.

It hasn’t been easy, around week five I almost quit, but I’m so glad I kept going; lilSOPHiE and KEVY may never have existed else.

I’m going to miss this challenge, but I have so many exciting plans for the new year :)

I hope you have a nice Christmas, and thank you so much for liking my sketches and stuff, I really do appreciate it :)

I’ve always been scared to post imperfect work to the Internet, but this challenge forced me to do that. In doing so I realised

…it isn’t so bad :)”

I LEARNT SO MUCH

The whole point of this challenge was to force myself out of my comfort zone and show up every day for an extended period of time; I wanted to see if I could actually show up for 75 days and: post something to my blog each week, learn digital painting and create a character who only really existed in my head.

ALL OF THOSE THINGS WERE FIRSTS

  • I’ve always been scared to post imperfect work to the Internet, but this challenge forced me to do that.
  • Writing, compiling and posting a blog each week isn’t easy but I know how important writing is to improve your understanding of things, so this was a vital part of the challenge.
  • I had never done digital art before, so I had no clue how hard it would be, what it would feel like or if I’d even enjoy the process.
  • I also had only ever drawn from reference before, so having to draw totally from my imagination, this was the thing that scared me the most about the challenge.

At the start, I also wanted to post a video each day, I did for three weeks, than a further two weeks posting a weekly video, but doing the videos ended up being too much, and was actually taking away from my ability to produce drawings. So they got cut, but I did find my limits and prove that it’s possible to post a video everyday for three weeks, so that is most likely my limit.

Any future challenges or whatever, I know where my limits are, in terms of producing video, so I learnt a lot even from that “failure” – I can now plan better for the future with more realistic expectations of what’s possible.

I ALMOST QUIT

Around WEEK 5, I almost quit. I was getting head aches from working digitally, and starting to feel overwhelmed by all the videos and stuff I had to do. The good thing about this challenge, was I allowed myself to be adaptable.

FUN WAS IMPORTANT

I said at the start, if I stop having fun, I stop. I wasn’t afraid to iterate things that didn’t seem to be working. Instead of quitting, I just started changing things about a bit to find a nicer balance. I stopped doing the videos, and spent a week only sketching in my sketchbook while I waited for some computer glasses to arrive.

I adapted the layout of the blog post so that it pulled from the Facebook posts I was already doing, making it a bit less time consuming. The computer glasses were a god send, they helped so much and by the end of the challenge I was able to work for hours on the computer without having any head or eye strain.

Another thing that got adapted was my focus, at first I lost sight of the main goal, which was to bring lilSOPHIE to life. Instead i got too focused on learning Photoshop. This is why writing helps, every time I wrote for the weekly blog post, I was almost checking in with myself to make sure I was heading towards my goal.

When I realised I wasn’t, I just gently nudge myself back on track.

I also switched from Photoshop to Clip Studio Paint Pro, I almost didn’t do that, but I thought it best to be open minded and try everything. This was my best decision. Clip Studio Paint Pro changed everything, I will write about it in a separate blog post in the future, but once I got my head around the software, I never looked back.

SHE’S ALIVE

lilSOPHiE now exists, she’s still evolving; she looks nothing like I first envisioned her, but l’m allowing her to evolve naturally. I’m not being strict on what she has to look like. I imagine in the future she will look totally different still.

I have so many ideas for her, I just enjoy drawing her so much. My goal is to move forward doing both realistic pencil work and continuing to improve lilSOPHiE and my digital painting skills. They are both so different to make, that they’ll compliment each other nicely.

NEXT WEEK?

There is no next week! That feels so odd, the past three months have flown by; this challenge was without doubt one of the hardest, but most rewarding things I’ve ever done with my art.

I still have dreams of doing oil paintings based of MY PHOTOS, so maybe 2018 will see me put together a 75 days Oil Painting Challenge just like this, but having to learn and produce an oil painting every day for 75 days :) I would imagine that’d be even tougher and more expensive, but I feel these sort of challenges are a great way to push yourself.

I hope you enjoyed this little challenge as much as I did :)

IT ALWAYS SEEMS IMPOSSIBLE, UNTIL IT’S DONE

Nelson Mandela