After completing my 31 Days of Movie Scenes challenge, I was itching to start a new project but I didn't quite know what I wanted to do. I knew that daily painting was doing wonders for my mental health, even though sometimes it (paradoxically) stressed me out because I felt pressured to keep the streak going. I did some internet surfing to see what art challenges already existed and I discovered The 100 Day Project.
The 100 Day Project is where people around the world choose one action to repeat daily for 100 days and may document it on a social media platform such as Instagram. It's now been 5 years running, and it's a great way to become part of a larger group of people all striving towards one similar goal: finishing 100 days of doing something.
Well, the 100 Day Project for 2018 finished just Wednesday, July 11th, and I'm excited to say that I did manage to finish 100 days of painting - all documented diligently on my Instagram account! You can search it under the hashtag #100DaysofArtCafe.
The Ones You've Already Seen
Starry Night Elephant
I've written about a few of the paintings already - the one below, Starry Night Elephant, became a fully fledged piece with a story behind it, which I love dearly and plan on turning into a bigger project.
I've also already written about my unfinished Mermay series, which was also part of this project. Neville's my favorite out of those.
The Ones I Love As Well
I think the recurring theme behind the ones I love most is that they're all paintings I can develop into bigger pieces and stories. I did a lot of animal paintings over the 100 days, and I like to think of many of them as practice for future animal-centric stories that I could illustrate! Many of them also make for fun stickers - announcement about that will be coming soon.
The Galaxy Panda
Based off of the once viral video of the baby panda holding onto a toy ball, I imagined a panda floating in space, the ball replaced by a moon. This was one of the first galaxy animal paintings I came up with, and I love the idea of creating a story around some friendly galaxy animals.
The Animal Planets
This was one of the later paintings, but seemed fitting to place next to the Galaxy Panda. This is actually going to be developed into a larger canvas piece for my apartment - I just couldn't pass up how adorable and silly these planets turned out! They don't have a story behind them, but they're quite ridiculous and cute, and they kind of remind me of the viral rolling animals video that made its rounds on the internet a few years ago.
The Floral Betta
I never really thought of fish as cute until I saw a betta fish! I'm not sure how the flowers got into his home, but I imagine a pretty cute story could be written around that, too. I painted quite other floral animals as well, and perhaps all the other animals could be coaxing this betta to be a little less grumpy.
The Plant Panda
Animals and plants coexist together already in our world, but can you imagine what it might be like if they truly joined? Sometimes when I'm among nature and I stand still enough, I feel like I could become one with the trees around me. When I began making this painting, I thought that pandas do just that: sit still for long enough that maybe, just maybe, plants could actually grow on them.
Flip Through Video
If you're interested in seeing a majority of the paintings not shown here in a quick video, here it is! Not all of the pieces are here: one was sent to an Etsy shop customer, and another has been framed and is on the wall in front of me. It makes me happy to look at it.
Favorite Tools Used
I am still obsessed with my Prima Marketing Tropical Confections palette. Some of the pieces incorporate Prismacolors colored pencils, which are lovely and a great staple, and I got to play around with some Posca markers, which are super fun.
For paper - I've been loving my Canson Mixed Media paper, which is super affordable and holds up pretty well to the watercolors I throw at it! And for the notebook, I don't know if I can ever go back to a traditional one again after using my DIY Traveler's Notebook for so long. I'm obsessed with it.
I'm pretty darn proud of myself for finishing 100 days of consecutive painting, even though life was still going on around me! I managed to establish a great habit of going to bed a little earlier and having a 6 am wake-up - giving me just enough time to paint for around 1 - 1.5 hours in the morning. It became a great way for me to kickstart my day, so that the first thing I do when I roll out of bed isn't thinking about my workday ahead of me.
It also forced me to plan my off-work hours a lot more. I had to plan out when I was going to paint if I missed my morning painting time, and if I knew I had plans over the weekend, I would have to paint a few in advance (I don't consider this cheating!) to make up for potential missed days.
Most importantly, though, is that I was able to brainstorm a ton of painting ideas! Sometimes I painted from life, and other times I painted cute animals I found on Pinterest and Instagram. I loved putting my own spin on the photos I found, and I love that I'm able to create little stories to flesh out the artwork. It's a pretty great feeling, knowing that if I'm ever in a creative block I can come back to doing a challenge like this to get the juices flowing again.