View Full Version : November Challenge "Page-A-Day" Signup!

10-31-2010, 01:52 PM
Welcome to the November 2010 "Page a Day" Challenge!

By overwhelming consensus in the October "Sketchbook in a Month" Challenge Chat Thread, we wanted a new challenge. "One Page a Day" took the lead as the most popular suggestion.

It doesn't matter what sketchbook you use, or what size it is. On a busy day, use a smaller sketchbook and do quick gesture sketches.

It doesn't matter what medium you use.

It doesn't matter what subject you draw. Though if you have a subject you want to get better at, you can theme your challenge to do "hands" or "Big Cats" or "trees" or "eyes" and get in a lot of concentrated practice on something that you'd like to improve in. Or show off on and improve in, there's always that stage of skill where others think it's great and you aren't satisfied with it. Ask for C&C if you want help.

It doesn't have to be from life, it can be from photos or from imagination. If you want subjects and good reference photos, check out the subject and medium forum November Challenges, check the Weekend Drawing Event in All-Media Art Events or the week's challenge in Drawing and Sketching forum. Or just pick a subject you like and check the Reference Image Library for something that grabs you.

Do one page a day in any of your sketchbooks to complete the challenge. That's a total of 30 pages in November. When I fall behind for reasons of health, I try to make up the lost day on something like this, but you don't need to. Just trying again the following day is good enough. Life interferes - but if you get in a lot of days, that's still a good result.

There's other ways to deal with life interruptions though. If you're not sure you can do this on a long busy day, keep a little tiny sketchbook like a pocket Moleskine handy. I've seen even smaller ones - the sort where a life size doodle of two acorns might fill a page. That little page counts. My smallest is 2 1/2" x 4" - like an ATC with a half inch extra. No matter how busy or rotten a day is, I can manage to doodle on that.

If you have space to spread out, try going really big on a giant sketchbook. Draw from the arm rather than the wrist, turn charcoal on its side for big sweeps of tone. That can be fun and powerful. It can also go fast if you work loose and sketchy instead of tight and detailed.

The day's page doesn't have to be good. Total flops are full of information about what doesn't work. Sometimes something about the complete failure is a wonderful thing that'd work perfect if you did it on purpose in a different context. So don't be afraid to jump in because you're new or you can't draw well or you think you can't draw well.

With a page a day practice, odds are by the end of the month you'll look back and be amazed at how much better you draw than you did at the start. That happened for me on the October challenge and I already knew I could draw well.

Please use the Butt Icon if your day's page needs it. That always attracts half the readers who really enjoy classical nudes and other adult subjects.

Because participants will be using multiple sketchbooks, an Index would start turning into an index of all the active threads in the forum. So this month there won't be an Index as such. I'll post a Progress and Chat thread on November 1st though, so you can come post there to announce that you finished the day's page.

I'm sure sometime during November a good idea for a December Challenge will come up out of the discussion.

Happy sketching! Post to this thread to pledge to do it, or if you have any questions about the November Challenge!

10-31-2010, 02:00 PM
I'm in Robert!

My plan is to finish up two sketchbooks that are unfinished, which will account for 27 of the pages combining what is left in each (10 & 17) and then the other three days I will wing it! I've been wanting to finish up all the sketches I have open before I start a new one, so this will give me the inpetus.


10-31-2010, 03:11 PM
Yip! I'm in :) Smaller books this time... probably 5x8"

10-31-2010, 04:43 PM
Oh, I so want to. Can I manage? I opted out last month because all my sketchbooks have so many pages. Filling one would be nigh on impossible. But, maybe, just maybe, I could pull this off. It would certainly challenge me to get back into sketching... OK, I'm in. :)

10-31-2010, 10:56 PM
Rainy, that's fantastic! Cool idea to finish up two half full sketchbooks. EP, cool idea and good size to work with. Debby, so glad you're jumping in. Sure, give it a go - and when in doubt, draw big and fast. Charcoal and markers and brush pens are good for filling a page really fast when you're rushed.

I want to at least start mine for the Sketchbook Project. It has 40 pages so I wouldn't be filling it this month unless I happen to fill it - but I'm going to be trying for both sides of the page on it. Then rotate to others when I want to do water mediums, the ones I started but neglected during October.

I've got the Water Folio still going. Even though I put some of the Color Explorations into the Pentalic, I'd like to get back to that one and maybe do some more demos and color mixing experiments. I'm also wickedly tempted to open up a new watercolor Moleskine but I'd probably do better finishing up the big Folio before I do that. Even if they're that cool, I'm better off keeping the number of active ones to reasonable. I still want to play with the black pages Derwent a bit though too.

If you have an old thread for a half finished sketchbook, find it and bump it up rather than starting a new thread for it. Even if that takes a little searching once, it's better than the front half of the book being lost.

10-31-2010, 11:37 PM
So Robert. . . . if not doing this in only one book (as in my case, I'm doing two half full ones) and if we don't have a sketch book thread for the books were are doing, where do we post the page a day at? Will it be like a daily sketch thread we add to or do we start a unique thread for our each sketch a day?


10-31-2010, 11:53 PM
I SO want to try! I failed sadly at the October sketchbook challenge. Sigh. But one page a day - maybe I could do that! Robert, I've loved looking at everyone else's sketchbooks this month. Everyone has done such fantastic work! I'm signing up for the November one and hope I can do better this time!

11-01-2010, 12:27 AM
I'm in, in fact I already started the other day. My challenge goes just one step further in that I'm requiring that at least one sketch/day be done from life, (for me one sketch usually = one page anyway.). I'll be using sketchbooks #5 and #6 at least for this, and may even be starting a #7 for pen and WC if I get to it, so I'll just post as normal to my sketchbook threads. With everybody using multiple sketchbooks I'm not sure how else you could do it except the way we always do it. I might not post every day though, I may wait a few days and then post a few sketches all at once from the previous few days, in fact I might just make my posts a weekly thing.


11-01-2010, 02:16 AM
Oct challenge was a great experience... I may give it a try again, and stick with my Oct thread with the same sketchbook.... plenty more pages left. :)

11-01-2010, 04:13 AM
I am interested, have just done day one, waiting for clarification on threads...

... Robert, do we create our own thread? (I'm new around here:D)


11-01-2010, 04:20 AM
hi, yes i'm in.
i mucked around with the october challenge. i actuallly did a lot more than i shared, playing with colours and generally sketching trees and branches. at least now i have foliage which i am happy enough with, for now at least!!!
so i will continue working in my october challenge sketchbook which i didnt finish. but at least i have started now, and i will take advantage of the scavenger challenges as well. everyone here is so encouraging, and even though strictly speaking i havent met the october challenge , i have started and am taking some good steps forward. and i guess each step, is forward!!!

11-01-2010, 08:05 AM
I'd like to sign up as well - I flopped at the October challenge courtesy of husband, both kids and myself having been nailed by flu followed by 3x chest infections, an ear infection, sinus infection and a sprained finger plus 4 energy soaking commissions. O_o

Considering prior to September I produced at a rate of maybe 1 sketch a YEAR though I'm still heaps more productive! LOL With 60 sheets in my original sketchbook, I still have a bit over 30 left so will use the same book if that's okay! :) I hope to post the remaining pages from October tomorrow!

11-01-2010, 12:29 PM
If you already have a thread for that sketchbook, Rainy, like your two half finished ones, just find your old thread for that book and bump it. If you're going to keep all the month's pages in one sketchbook and start a new book, make a thread for it. Art Journals threads are per volume.

If you're doing loose pages, consider putting them into a binder, presentation book or folder and call that a volume, then make a thread for it. If they're smaller than 8 1/2" x 11" or that size, you can get page protectors or children's report holders that'd easily hold 30 pages unless they're all on heavy paper.

Yay for so many people signing up! Once again - same book as a previous journal is fine.

If you didn't finish October's "Sketchbook in a Month" challenge, bumping that thread to fill the old book is a great idea. I know I'll still be reading all the new posts and new pages folks put in those to complete them.

Chris, if you never posted a thread here before, make a new thread for your sketchbook and get started. I have multiple threads for different sketchbooks but I just got a new one that I need to make a thread for - and it's the one that'll get the lion's share of my novel illustrations so it's a necessity for my November pages.

My reward for doing the day's chapter in my Nanowrimo novel is to sketch something in the journal from the Sketchbook Project - it's at Art House, there's links all over or you could google Art House or Sketchbook Project to find out. I signed up and got the Moleskine Cahier they send out a couple of weeks ago, but wanted to finish my October sketchbook before starting it.

11-01-2010, 12:36 PM
Thanks, Robert. . . I did start a new thread because other than my October Journal (which is now done), I have no other Art Journal threads to resurrect.

Look forward to seeing everyones journal, both new and the continuing ones1

11-01-2010, 01:19 PM
I'm in. I never did a thread for my October sketchbook, as I was super busy with art workshops and life. I did however fill my book. I just did not have enough hours in my days to scan and post and comment. This month I'm going to do color mixing and color theory, so I will be doing tests with the wide variety of mediums I have on hand, and doing some sketching along those lines. So for me November will be the month of Color! And I need to begin my coffee and cigarettes for the Sketchbook Project too. I had planned to rebind it with new paper...didn't happen, I may just try a page or two with the existing paper, it would be limited to graphite, colored pencils maybe and ballpoint as my pages are quite thin. I obviously got a different book than you Robert.

I'm off to Hobby Lobby to get another Pentallic in a larger size to handle all the testing, I think the 5x7 is a wee bit small for that.

Good luck everyone, and goodluck on your Nanowrimo Robert!:thumbsup:

11-01-2010, 02:05 PM
That's a great theme, poochemio. Awesome study for a month. You're doing the same theme, that's great! Yeah, I've got that feeling too about it, pens and colored pencils and pencils are probably my best bet. Though the brush pens work fine on it so if you have any Pitt Artist Pens or Tombow brush tips or anything like that, they'd probably go okay. Markers may bleed through to the back of the page though.

It's probably the same paper though - the Moleskine sketch paper is nasty with wet mediums and it's off white and thin. I'd forgotten it was thinner than the other Moleskine sketchbook papers. Eh, ballpoints and pencils are okay though. You can get some good effects with those. I'd use fixative on anything too smeary.

Joan T
11-01-2010, 02:51 PM
You can count me in! I did finish my October journal and really enjoyed doing that. I am contemplating doing a sketchbook of drawings/paintings done without pencil sketches first. I need to force myself to do that more. Now that I've typed it in black and white I guess that's what I'm going to do this month. That way I can incorporate some of the scavenger hunt sketches and even the WDE and not feel so pressured. lol It will still take me a while to finish going through the sketchbooks from last month. They started to get a bit overwhelming by the end of the month.

11-01-2010, 03:48 PM
Yay Joan! I love your paintings with or without pencil sketching first - it's so cool when you paint directly. That's a grand challenge!

11-01-2010, 03:55 PM
I'm in too. I finished the October one just in time.

This one will jump about between books but I'll put all the work in a November challenge thread.

11-01-2010, 04:14 PM
Yay, this sounds like fun. I like the fact that I'm not bound to one medium because of the sketchbook's actual limitations. Being able to do which ever "page" of sketchbooks I want will help me stay on track too I think.

I also carry a small pocket sketch book that I use all the time anyway.



11-01-2010, 04:29 PM
Hi All,

I did a sketchbook for the month of October. I think I did 40 sketches but I never posted them. I'm doing more sketching to help me draw better and give me something to paint. It has definitely helped. I will try to upload all my pictures ASAP and definitely count me in for the month of November. Look forward to this and seeing what everyone else has to offer. Thanks - Bonnie

11-01-2010, 04:31 PM
Hello everyone,
I really wanted to join the oct challenge,but things got in the way.
I'd like to join the Nov. challenge though. So, i'm in! i need lots of sketching practice and am ALWAYS saying i need to sketch everyday to improve, this will help keep me motivated to just do it!
Don't think i can post sketches every day though is it ok to do several of them at once as i do them.
k... better get my pencils out! :)

11-01-2010, 07:09 PM
Joining this challenge, even though I probably won't have as much time to sketch as I would have liked. Sandra.

11-01-2010, 07:46 PM
I'm in Robert! I have been waffling about my original thought of taking on a real uncomfortable subject for me - portraits (and figures). But the point of sketching is to learn, and learning to do decent portraits will help me in other stuff, so what the heck. With some trepidation, I'll do portraits and figures. I'll even post all of them, including the clunkers, which may encourage some lurker out there to jump in as well. My primary issue with this subject is to keep it to a reasonably short sketch and not spend hours trying to get a perfect portrait - assuming I actually could do that anyway! :lol: So some of these may be really quick, and I'm probably also going to experiment with different media.

The sketchbook used will be a partly filled 12 x 9" Aquabee sketchbook.

Good luck to everyone else who is participating!

11-02-2010, 12:47 AM
Hi everyone! :wave: I am in again. I did complete my Oct. challenge- which was not a very tough one- a 6x8 Strathmore Drawing pad, 24 sheet. Then 4 pages to finish an old unfinished one, same size. Having some days left I did 5 more pages in a Mixed Media book. (So I oozed into page a day almost.) Total of 32 pages. But my goals were 1) to see how I liked the smaller size as an ongoing thing (ok but not my fave) and 2)to compare Strath' and Canson surfaces with which media. Learned a lot and as always enjoyed immensely the motivation to draw every day possible.

For Nov. I chose a charcoal spiral drawing pad. (I create a hard-bound feel by gluing a cardboard layer inside the thin cover, btw.) It is 32 sheets, 9x12, Strath 300, inexpensive. Will use mainly charcoal pencil, plus hard pastel pencils, and OP's, as the cover says suitable for all 3. An Art Supply Addict spree got me 2 dozen charcoal pencils so now a goal is to use 'em up!:lol:

And I will learn how to post them!!!!

11-02-2010, 03:12 AM
Hi All,
Okay I will continue with the Ocotber thread sketchbook, as I said before, I am going to try to make this over three months instead of one.
But a page a day I can achieve quite well!!!!
Gentle Hugs, Stacey

11-02-2010, 10:24 AM
Hi, Stacey! It's good to see you posting. I hope you and your husband are both feeling better.

11-04-2010, 02:45 PM
Well - better late than never. I would love to join in.

......"Do one page a day in any of your sketchbooks to complete the challenge. That's a total of 30 pages in November. When I fall behind for reasons of health, I try to make up the lost day on something like this, but you don't need to. Just trying again the following day is good enough. Life interferes - but if you get in a lot of days, that's still a good result."

So I will start with a catch-up and like others, will finish off a sketchbook that has been started. Probably lots of trees.

11-04-2010, 11:12 PM
I have sketches. But not every day. :o I still have a few hours left today and will pull out my sketchbook. I just haven't got pictures of what I've drawn so far. On the agenda for tomorrow.

11-05-2010, 01:17 AM
Hi Robert!

I'm in. I can sure use this for warm up time to start my days this month. This was a busy work week so I am a little late. I'll continue in the book I was using. I've been meaning to get into the habit of staring my days this way with warm ups.