How my year-long art challenge changed me. Artwork in progress on easels.

How my year long art challenge changed me

My year long art challenge changed me without a doubt.

how I feel about My art challenge now

Firstly, the most rewarding thing I’ve found about this pursuit is that working my plan a little every day eventually gave be a large collection of new work.

Next, having studio space, plenty of leftover materials from my closed business, and my husband’s support is something for which I feel grateful.

At the same time, I’m surprised by the number of works that are well outside my usual style and equally rapt over how much I actually like them. 

Then, I’m slightly weary because I made a lot of artwork around the task of finishing the inside of my home on the weekends and, well, a lot of things have happened personally in this past year. But, that’s life, really, isn’t it?

Lastly, I’m satisfied that my studio is filled with 52 new works created in a style I never imagined I would do.

why a year long art challenge

Tackling this challenge was a big ask. When I started, we had recently completed a massive home restoration. 

On top of that, creating abstracts was a big mystery after a lifetime of making narrative realism. I craved simplicity and wasn’t ready for the research and preparation narrative realism required.

Making 52 works within a limited time proved to be liberating because I couldn’t fuss over any one work.

How I enacted the challenge

Simple rules kept my pursuit playful, productive and less stressful. You can read “How to Analyse Your Artwork” to learn about those rules. 

How did I come up with all those ideas for 52 works! Watch the video, “5 Simple Ways to Make New from Old” or you can read about it on my blog post, titled, “5 Simple Ways to get New Ideas from Older Works”.

Knowing my why and crafting a straight-forward plan to actually create the works is the key reason I’ve arrived at this point. You can learn more by watching ‘Kicking out Studio Frustration-Knowing Your Why’, the first of five videos about how to make significant art and have a life. Alternatively, read the blogposts below.

(Continued below)

the challenge line finish

My year long art challenge deadline was 31 May 2024. Most of the works are completed, however, a dozen or so are in final stages.  

Finishing on time was never as important as creating the artworks around the life I have with the people I love; 

Pushing myself way beyond that which was comfortable and making works that greatly differed from what I’d expected was important. Additionally, I’m pleased my new works distinctly differ from what I created before.

What’s more, I’m finishing works I actually like whilst I’m learning new things in the process. Therefore, I want to spend the extra time to achieve these aims.

Where to next?

I will finish the remaining pieces in a sane time frame because I really like the works in progress. I’m thrilled I’ve got my art-making groove back, which was the main point of starting my challenge.

feeling stuck?

Are you feeling a bit stuck or uninspired in your arts practice? Then, starting a challenge may good for you. However, it is NOT for the faint of heart, particularly if you decide to go the extra mile to video, edit and publish your results on YouTube.

That’s why I’m forming an online challenge group later on this year, most likely on Zoom, to start. You’ll be able to privately share and talk about your progress and works in a safe online space, with other artists doing their own challenge

If you’d like more information on participating in this group, please join my email list. 

My list gets early access and subscriber-only prices on my artwork. Click the link to sign up for my email below.

April 2024 Studio view of Pinky 1-6, Rhema Derivative Squared 1 and 2 in progress. Final Rhema Derivative 1 and 2 lowere front. On the left back is finished Wabi Sabi Derivative Squared.
April 2024 Studio view of Pinky 1-6, Rhema Derivative Squared 1 and 2 in progress. Final Rhema Derivative 1 and 2 lowere front. On the left back is finished Wabi Sabi Derivative Squared.
Printing with oil based ink was messy. Ink was everywhere!
Printing with oil based ink was messy. Ink was everywhere!
In studio works in progress.
In studio works in progress.

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