You can do the tasks in any order that you want. They are to guide and challenge you but if you want to leave some out that is absolutely fine! Equally, if one task really inspires you and you want to do several versions of it - go for it! Work at your own pace. That said, having the discipline of doing a drawing a day will reap rewards. 


I have added some of my images and sketchbook images to show you how you might approach the tasks. Remember there is no right and wrong, approach to the tasks with an experimental, playful approach. Stay curious and see what happens!

This week I want you to consider aiming for QUANTITY over QUALITY. I know that probably goes against the grain - you want to prove to yourself and me and the others in the group that you are worthy of being here and that you can do each task well. But you don't need to prove that worth. You are brave and fearless creatives who have signed up to be put through 30 days of challenges!

In 'Art & Fear'​ David Bayles and Ted Orland write of an art teacher who gave one half of a pottery class the task of making the best pot they had ever made, and the other half of the class were tasked with making the most pots that they had ever made. At the end of the month, those who had been aiming for their best pot had produced very little, and had tripped over their own feet with perfectionism, and ended up riddled with self doubt. Those who produced quantity, found that they made many mistakes and with each iteration resolved a problem and eventually produced many wonderful pots. 

Draw, draw again and draw some more. Don't think whether they are good or bad. Just draw. Keep the faith - we have a whole month to evolve. :)

We will be adding layers to these drawings so not every drawing needs to be finished - leave spaces in your sketchbooks to fill with pattern and collage and other drawings. You don't have to start at the beginning either - just open your sketchbook at any page and start there. 

Keep in mind the Fearless Drawing tutorials as you move through this weeks tasks. Keep your line strong and loose. Fill the page, don't whisper! 


Here is a mini-tutorial to get you started on this week's tasks - have fun and stay loose!

Task 1 - Draw with your non-dominant hand. Look at a flowerhead in your garden - look at the shapes that they are made up from. Create bold florals in your sketchbook - fill in the negative spaces with blocks of paint or ink. (Negative spaces are the spaces behind or between the main elements that you are drawing) this will help pop the flower forwards. It also shows you that it is okay to use colour anywhere on the page. Just because the flower is orange doesn't mean you have to colour it in orange - you can use the orange somewhere else. 

Click the gallery images to enlarge. Click the white arrows to migrate left and right.

Task 2 - looking at a plant in your garden, create simple line drawings to fill to the edges of the page. Let the line go out to the edge and fall off the page - we don't want small drawings hovering in the middle of the page. Do a few - leave the pages simple and sparse, not everything has to be a finished page - you can add to these in later weeks with pattern and colour and text.

Task 3 - Paint some inky painted squares in your sketchbook to create backgrounds. Look at some foliage from your garden. Do a line drawing with Posca pen on top of the blocks of colour. The shapes that you have painted act as mini frames for your drawings and create a structure to your page. They can create some deeper tones to draw onto. When you are drawing the plant shapes - let your marks flow - enlarge them to help with this - get loose - don't try and replicate each leaf and petal - look at the structure and get a sense of it. 

Task 4 -Shadow Drawing - take your paper into the sunshine and let shadows fall on it - draw around them. Enjoy the playfulness of this exercise. It can help you to be able to take out the details and see the outlines of plants and flowers. The way that the sun stretches the plants into elongated shadows can help you be more playful and not get bogged down in trying to create realistic images. In the shadow of the achillis mollis I saw lots of tiny stars that I then played with as the page filled up. 

Task 5 -Draw with coloured pens - big bold shapes - draw through the shapes. Colour in. If you dont have pens use colouring pencils or ink and a brush. The trick is to keep you lines fluid and let the shapes intersect each other to make abstract shapes.

I used to love drawing like this when I was a child. Remind yourself of simpler times when you just took pleasure in putting pen to paper. 

Task 6 - fill a page/double page with inky circles. With a light or dark Posca pen draw flower heads in each circle - be loose - break out of the circle. Having a series of shapes to draw on to gives you a placement for your flower heads and creates a sense of purpose - filling up each circle. I used a biro in this drawing - Posca pen is much bolder and colourful!

Task 7 - Draw with ink and wash. Draw on top with a fine liner. Draw on top with a Posca pen. Keep loose and let the shapes wander. You start to get a sense of depth. This will hopefully give you some ideas on how to tackle the layers of foliage in your garden. 

When I was doing this sequence I didn't know how it would turn out and that was a bit nerve wracking. I kept on going though and once I had the inked shapes on top of the painted page I could see that there was potential. when I drew on with the fine liner it looked a bit lost as the line didn't contrast strongly with the background. But once I added the yellow Posca pen the shapes popped forwards. It could have gone horribly wrong but you don't know until you try! 

When I was inking in the dark tones I spent some time looking at the different shapes between the leaves, then I made it up as I went along. I'm not patient enough to paint every actual leaf - it would drive me nuts. I have gone for an impression of the plant.

When you are ready move on to week 2. You do not need to have completed all the tasks - do what feels good. Share your photos of your drawings in the facebook group. It is all about process and having a go. 


Helen Hallows


Nurturing Creativity since....

© 2009-2020 Helen Hallows

Copyright of all art works remains with the artist Helen Hallows 

Online course content, blog posts and all design and written content remains the intellectual property of Helen Hallows. Please do not reproduce without permission. All rights reserved.


Nottingham, UK

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