Well friends, as your social media feeds have shown you, #inktober is upon us. What started as a fun challenge for daring pen slingers by artist Jake Parker ,  has grown to the point that we are drowning in awesome ink in so many styles and techniques, my eyeballs are filling up like that episode of X-files.

And I love it.

So I thought I’d celebrate by posting my efforts from last year, and pick out a few examples to show process video of how I went about it. (There are 9 videos below!)

Here is an overview.
[youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ov0CY-Gf8qY]

First, the Ledger…


I have a fetish for old office supplies and picked this ledger up at a flea market years ago. I used it for #inktober specifically because I thought I would keep it fun and and stop me from taking the drawings too serious. A sketchbook felt somehow… studious for my goals. I just wanted to party with a pen.

Well… as happens, I did wind up taking them pretty serious, taking up to 5 hours to complete a few of them. But I will say the low pressure of a ledger kept my mind/ideas as loose as a frat boy doing kegstands.

And as it turns out, the Ledger is an amazing book to work in! I was shocked how little wrinkling there was of the thin paper no mater how I doused it with ink. Someone explained that ledgers were really important documents, meant to last a LONG time. You did not want ink to bleed through so manufacturers did not cheap out on the materials.  Perhaps even using a rag paper?

I am using metal pen nibs in most of this book. They did not tear up the surface, nor bleed through. I abused it so much I felt the need to apologize to the book, but it just wanted more.

For you art supply fetishists out there, only ink was put in this book in the form of FW Acrylic ink or ballpoint pen. Applied with Nikko Nib pens (G-pen and Mapping) and Rosemary or Robert Simmons White Sable brushes. (With the exception of some gold Martha Stewart Liquid Guilding.)

I prefer Parker Ball Point, which I used in some cases for light sketching before committing to FW ink. but be warned, ballpoint will bleed up to the top of the Acrylic ink, and takes MANY coats if you want to cover it. So go light.

Ok enough jibber jabber, on with the show!

[youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=la1lPBL3ejU]

[youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4DpLYFG4cqc]

[youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FqC5fUKU4BI]

[youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LN9jIepn0x0]

[youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2s3tW25Q-Xo]

[youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=H6rQa6V3pT4]

[youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=k_l-FxTRieM]

[youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FvI27VM2hF8]

And here is a video showing my first stab at 2017!

[youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vjnExPullU8]

Last year was my first time participating, and though I knew about it before, I didn’t really understand the power of #inktober.

One of the questions I get asked most is how to get your work seen, and while I know there is a flood of artists participating, the first thing I say to them is to do #inktober.

There are so many people searching that hashtag right now, I truly believe good work will rise to the top, and if followers is your goal, I’d be shocked if it didn’t get you more.

I know my perspective is a bit skewed because I had a pretty solid base to start before I threw my hat into the ring. But there were times last Oct that I was adding 1000 followers a day on Instagram. I personally have never seen growth like that before or since. So there is something magical that happens in October, other than Halloween.

This thing that started out pretty casual for me, has become its own monster. And someday I’d love to publish a reproduction book, warts and all. But I have to do a few more blank pages to fill first!