This summer I jumped into The 100 day Project. This was started by Elle Luna & The Great Discontent as a way to create ANYTHING for 100 days and share on Instagram what we have made. It was a way to love the PROCESS of making and not so much about the goal of creating one beautiful thing.
We all know that if we want to learn something new or improve our skills we HAVE to do one thing: KEEP DOING IT. I’ve always struggled to keep a sketchbook consistently, so this project helped immensely. My project was to create lettering and a food illustration every day. You can see my Instagram feed here.
Here is what I learned while in the process:
1. DONT’ TRY TO DO TOO MUCH AT ONCE
When giving myself a goal - I always try to do TOO much. I wanted to include all of the things that I love to draw in my daily drawings - food - lettering - pattern AND I was trying to draw a whole meal. This proved to be fine on some days and overwhelming on other days when I didn’t have enough time. Later I kept it simple and chose certain vegetables and fruit with lettering.
My advice: don’t take on more than you can chew, start with something simple, because you don’t want to feel overwhelmed and give up. The key is to choose something SUSTAINABLE.
2. THINK DIFFERENTLY
I don’t know about you, but as a creative person I get BORED. This assignment forced me to figure out new and exciting ways to create lettering or to layout my illustrations. This lead to some very interesting new work and ways of working. Coming up with new solutions to problems is what we do as creative people and having a practice that FORCES you to think differently is invaluable.
My advice: Don’t be afraid to try something new - that’s the whole point of creating! The question, "What would happen if I did THIS?" is one of the most important questions we can ask and helps us enjoy this process. One idea leads to another, leads to another and pretty soon you have a whole new way of working!
3. GET INTO A ROUTINE
At first as you can imagine, it’s exciting to begin a project like this and you are full of energy and ideas. But after a couple weeks, I started to get a bit bored and anxious. But something else happened. It became AUTOMATIC. I knew I had to finish an illustration a day, so I would keep my sketchbook handy and whenever I had time (on the train, doctors office, etc.) I would start sketching. And guess what? I STILL do it even after the project is over. They say it takes about 21 days to create a habit, making creativity a habit is the ONLY way to improve our skills.
My advice: Just do it! Whatever it is that you want to start or get better at, the only way you ever will is if you practice. Don’t be afraid of how bad you are, just keep working at it, day after day.
This project was such a great experience, I learned so much, met wonderful people and came away with new artwork and illustration gigs. Thanks to everyone who joined in!