What is inktober? It’s a drawing challenge. There are prompts each day in October. The challenge I set myself is to do a drawing for each prompt, in ink, square. You can see the prompts here and on Inktober.com Why do I do it? It’s different from my “normal” work. My urban sketches and other art generally take several hours, and are from life (non-fiction). I do the inktober drawings quickly, in less than half an hour normally, and from imagination (fiction). Inktober jolts me into other worlds. It’s also a challenge, and enjoyable. I also like to see what other people draw, from the same prompt. The drawings are posted on instagram with the tag #inktober2020.
I did it last year for the first time. It surprises me that I can do it.
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The air in Crete was warm and damp. This affected the paper. See how the ink has spread in this pen and ink sketch at the airport:
This is De Atramentis Black document ink on high quality watercolour paper, Saunders Waterford, in a small book 6″ by 4″ from the Vintage Paper Company.
After that, I used pencil and watercolour only. Here is a view of the Akrotori peninsula. The warship is lurking in the NATO base.
US Navy ship in the NATO base
We lived with insects. At a hand movement, other movements occurred, in the air, on the kitchen surfaces, on the floor. Ants made their way across the breadboard, collecting crumbs or notifying HQ of the location of the honey drip. Beetles arrived suddenly, folded their wings and inspected the floor. I tried drawing them.
Two geckos made their miraculous appearance some evenings and early mornings. They emitted small squeaks.
These are images made on “sun print” paper, using plants, and cut-out paper shapes. The geckos are a species of nocturnal reptile: Hemidactylus turcicus or Mediterranean House Gecko. They are insectivorous, eating, amongst other things, moths. I wondered if they would like to live in the Barbican ducts. It must be quite warm in there, and they would be entirely welcome to devour the moths.
They stick to the walls not with suckers but with hairs on their feet. The feet of geckos are subject of intense scientific interest, I read, since these hairs are so configured that they get close to the wall on an atomic scale (10 nanometers or so). At this distance the molecules of the feet attract, rather than repel, the molecules of the wall. There is a whole compendium of physics effects which make this possible: quantum mechanical, electrostatic, surface tension. There could be an entire undergraduate course on the feet of the Gecko.
Outdoors there is landscape…
…and a garden.
I am learning to draw clouds. There were a lot of them.
I am learning to draw quickly. Here are some very quick sketches from cafés.
The grass was cut around the lower buildings in ancient Aptera, revealing arches.
Arches make poetry in the Agia Triada monastery: a pre-departure pause….
…before the airport.
Pictures done in sketchbooks:
Small watercolour sketchbook from the Vintage Paper Company.