The “Draw it Again Challenge” is a fun and interesting way to see where you are with your art. You may be thinking that this challenge sounds familiar, it should! Not only has it been fairly popular over the internet it is a tool I use often like in my recent post: 7 Ways to Take your Art to the Next Level Right Now.
What is the Challenge, exactly? It is actually quite simple. You take a piece of work you’ve done. I suggest you use something at least a year old, you can go back farther if you like. Then you take the premise of that piece and you redo it. You do it again but as you would do it now. You can be as close to the original as you like. I often stick fairly close to the original unless my style has changed so much that, I just wouldn’t do the artwork the same at all anymore. You can do this challenge as often as you like but I do like to do it at least one a year.
Why would you redo old work? Isn’t that a waste of time? Nope! Going back to a piece can do quite a few things for you:
- Show where you’ve improved
- Show what you still need to work on
- Show you how your style has progressed
- Bring in new inspiration
- Give you a more polished and finished piece
I recently redid an old Inktober sketch of mine. I actually really enjoyed this particular piece and wouldn’t have changed much about it composition or content wise now. My style has changed a bit in this time though.
Usually I would start off with a sketch, try different placements, ideas, etc. I didn’t want to go that into detail with this particular piece. I was happy with it the way it was and was more interested in seeing my process in developing it; particularly the colours.
The original is mostly black ink on white paper with a bit of red for the balloon. My work these days is a lot more colourful.
I started off by drawing this lovely little robot in pencil in my sketch book.
Once I was happy with my rough outline I decided where I wanted to go with colour. I knew I wanted to make it more colourful than I had in the past. I toyed with idea of making the Robot himself a fully coloured and detailed component in the picture. Ultimately I decided that I liked the contrast of the Robot’s bold black outline and wanted to keep that against a lighter but still colourful background. He is the star of the show.
Because the Robot and his balloon are the focus of the image I wanted them to jump out against the background as much as possible. I decided, again, to stick with the darker, bolder red of the balloon in order to accomplish this.
I didn’t outline anything other than the Robot and balloon in black, unlike in the original ( everything was in black).
While I do enjoy this finished piece I did learn a lot from it. I do think it is an effective example of where my style and work has been moving to for some time now. I do not think it is a completely finished or effective piece on its own though. I do still love this little guy, I like that he is now surrounded by colour, I am mostly happy with it compositionally. Looking at it now and had I spent more time on it I would move the Robot down lower, he is too close to the edge of the paper and would do the composition more justice to have him overlapping the buildings instead of just kissing the tops of them. This leaves an awkward balance and flow in the area around his legs. I do think it is well-balanced and overall an acceptable piece but I do see a lot of work that needs to be done. The colours convey the dreamy and fun feeling I wanted but they aren’t as bright as I think I should have gone. Looking at this I’ve noticed that this has been happening in a lot of my work lately. I need to be more conscious of being too subtle with my colour, it isn’t my intention but it has been happening. Much of my work would be more effective being more saturated with colour. There isn’t much point in using these bright and vibrant colours if no one can see them. Playing it safe isn’t helping me here. This is something I have noted to work on for myself; perhaps a different medium would compliment this better.
Check out my YouTube channel on Friday (videos go up at 6 pm EST) to watch the creation of this lovely little Robot!
Have you done the draw it again challenge? Do you Plan on it? Or what do you think I could do differently with this picture? Let me know in the comments below.
Until next time, my Creative friends!