This year, I decided to participate in another Inktober, an online drawing challenge conceived by Jake Parker. Every October, artists all over the world take on the Inktober drawing challenge by doing one ink drawing a day the entire month. The goal of the challenge is to improve your inking skills.
Part of the challenge with Inktober is coming up with ideas, that align with my style, but also honors the prompt. My goals for this challenge are simple: all analog ink art, with limited ink wash for shading.
Here is this year's prompt list:
Here are my submissions:
Day 01: “CRYSTAL”
For “Crystal” I wanted to do something other than a faceted gem, or fortune telling device. This one my turn a few corners, but I thought it would be fun to do a portrait of Mike Wazowski, the cute little character from Disney Pixar’s, Monsters Inc. - played by, you know it, Billy Crystal.
Day 02: “SUIT”
For this prompt, I wanted to do something fun and show a different kind of ’suit’. Being a huge fan of Godzilla and being raised on the 50s and 60s classics—on Saturday reruns—I thought it would be nice to pay tribute to the man who wore the giant monster suit, Haruo Nakajima.
Day 03: “VESSEL”
I’m a huge fan of the classic 1966 film, Fantastic Voyage, and more recently, the 1987 film Innerspace — where people were reduced to microscopic size, in order to pilot ‘VESSELS’ through one of humanity’s final frontiers: the human body. Travel would happen through the host’s blood “VESSELs”. This sketch is a stylistic tribute to those films.
Day 04: “KNOT”
I decided to stick to my wheelhouse on this one, robots. This ‘bot never sprung for the MagSafe® wireless charging upgrade, so it spends most of its recharge time untangling its power cord, which always seems to be in a “KNOT”.
Day 05: “RAVEN”
Would you believe me if I told you that this is Raven Symone, in a flight suit, riding a giant “RAVEN”? Clearly wildlife is not in my wheelhouse of drawing skills. The old me would have drawn a raven-bot or a simple raven on a bot’s shoulder. However, I wanted to push myself outside of my comfort zone on this one.
Day 06: “SPIRIT”
Just to reset after my last journey outside of my comfort zone, here’s another robot. There is no other person with more team “SPIRIT” than this cheerleader ‘bot, cheering for its favorite Golden Bolt winners, during the BattleBot World Championship.
Day 07: “FAN”
Perhaps inspired by Curious George, when he made the paper boats and sent them off into the pond, this ‘bot dreams of being a great sea captain, sailing his ship to the far corners of the ocean. Until then, his little paper boat will need a little bit of wind assistance from his portable “FAN”.
Day 08: “WATCH”
This Projector ‘bot is ready to play your favorite move, whenever you want to “WATCH” it. But first, let’s all go to the lobby and get ourselves a snack.
Day 09: “PRESSURE”
Before he takes a few laps around the track, this cyclist always makes sure that his tires are at the right “PRESSURE”.
Day 10: “PICK”
This girl loves to “PICK” flowers to share with anybody—including giant robot invaders.
Day 11: “SOUR”
This Baker ‘bot loves to make “SOUR”dough bread. From its top secret starter to the organic, non-GMO flour, it only puts the best ingredients in its mixer bowl.
Day 12: “STUCK”
I’ve always assumed that extraterritorial travelers would be human sized. What if they travel for thousands of lightyears, only to end up getting “STUCK” in your neighborhood spider web? This might be a sad end to any tiny explorer’s journey.
Day 13: “ROOF”
There is nothing that says road trip better than a loaded “ROOF” rack. This little car is ready for adventure across the country, making stops at every roadside attraction.
Day 14: “TICK”
“TICK” tock is the sound the punch clock makes, every time the “TICK” crew clocks in for their shift. Another day, another drop of blood.
Day 15: “HELMET”
Some stunt ‘bots are so focused on their sick moves and jump flips, that they forget to fasten their “HELMET” straps.
Day 16: “COMPASS”
As it turns out, this hiker’s trusty “COMPASS” wasn’t actually leading him true north to his campsite, but rather west, to the local salvage yard.
Day 17: “COLLIDE”
To take out their frustration, these ‘bots love to “COLLIDE” into each other during the Bumper Car Demolition Derby.
Day 18: “MOON”
This robot is rethinking how close he was standing to greet the new neighbors. “One giant leap for mankind” meant the end to this bot’s welcome to the “MOON” casserole days.
Day 19: “LOOP”
Nothing gets this ‘bot’s day started better than a big ol’ bowl of Reboot “LOOP” cereal. Chock full of minerals and iron, and part of a complete breakfast, there’s enough fuel resources to power through the morning.
Day 20: “SPROUT”
Not much of a story to tell for today’s prompt except that I love that movie Wall-E from @disney @pixar . Who wouldn’t love a movie that has a robot as the lead character? For this prompt, I decided to do a little fan art and draw the little lone “SPROUT” that Wall-E found and placed in an old boot.
Day 21: “FUZZY”
There isn’t a better mod for your car, than a good pair of “FUZZY” dice! They will add instant horsepower, prestige and value to your vehicle, no matter what you drive—even if it goes nowhere.
My wife—who is an amazing photographer, gardener, mother and partner—is also a great creative thinker and helps me work through my solutions for many the prompts. Fuzzy dice was all her.
Day 22: “OPEN”
Believe it or not, robot brain surgery is a very difficult task. It requires precision instruments to “OPEN” the head of a robot to get access vital operational parts. The procedure is typically painless, and can be repaired by using a simple welding torch.
Day 23: “LEAK”
This ‘bot didn’t realize that it’s boat had a “LEAK” until it was too late. Being miles from shore and not knowing how to swim should have caused worry. Fortunately, Bucket Head ‘bots are known for their ability to improvise—especially when they forget to bring their water pump and life jacket.
Day 24: “EXTINCT”
The past called. They want their “EXTINCT” technology back. I went a bit surreal on this one giving the caller a triceratops head, just to push the prompt a little further. What can I say, it’s day 24 and my creative bank account is getting a bit tapped out.
Day 25: “SPLAT”
I thought that I would try something different with this one. Instead of showing the actual mess, I decided to draw and implied “SPLAT”. Here, this robot’s actions, to reach just a little too far out of his range, will lead to only one conclusion.
Day 26: “CONNECT”
I’m attempting another small break from robots. The first thing that came to mind, when I thought about this prompt, is LEGO. My son grew up playing for hours with this limitless toy, and admittedly, I had fun with them too. I love how each piece would “CONNECT” to the others to create whatever your imagination could come up with.
Day 27: “SPARK”
No robot is worth its gears, if it can’t change it’s own “SPARK”plugs. The newer models come with a flux turbine core—which requires hours of fine tuning. However, ,owthese older generations are rock solid and easy to maintain, with fewer, well built parts.
Day 28: “CRISPY”
This taco stand owner is trying a new Lucha Libre gimmick to sell his soon-to-be, world famous “CRISPY” tacos. The Pile Driver taco, comes with an extra large shell and double stuffed with ingredients.
Day 29: “PATCH”
I brought back my Unicycle Juggler Bot for this prompt. When juggling chickens and bowling balls all day, this bot’s unicycle tends to get a flat tire from time to time. He’s had to put a “PATCH” in several different places on his old inner tube.
Unicycle Juggler Bot: A few years back, when my kids were a lot younger, I asked what they would like me to draw. Jokingly one of them said, a clown robot on a unicycle, juggling — so I did it. During #MarchOfRobots this year, I decided to redraw it better. If you scroll down my feed, you’ll be able to see the March of Robots version, and if you are completely bored, scroll down more to see the original sketch done in 2012.
Day 30: “SLITHER”
I’ve been using so much ink this month, that my pencil has decided to “SLITHER” away. When this is over, I may take a break from my pens and ink wash, and just live in the world of graphite for a while—just for a little something different.
I have to admit, this was the most difficult prompt of the whole challenge, mostly because I’m not great with drawing snakes. For almost every other prompt, I was able to come up with a visual solution that fits my style - even if I had to turn a few corners to get there. My wife came through for me again. When I was struggling to come up with an idea, she suggested a PENCIL that looks like a snake. Simple but brilliant.
Day 31: “RISK”
This robot is taking a “RISK” sliding around in its tighty whities and socks, while dancing to Bob Segar’s “Old Time Rock and Roll”—but that’s it’s ‘Business’. It’s not like it’s going to run a brothel in it’s parent’s suburban house, while they are away.
My wife came through for me again. When I was struggling to come up with an idea, she suggested the classic 80s movie, Risky Business. I went ahead and did an iconic scene from the movie, but with a robot Tom Cruise.
Here's a quick scan of all the work: