Archive for the ‘Art Challenge’ Category

Let The Great Experiment Begin: October Challenges Are All The Rage

It’s true, I like to challenge myself. Sometimes. Here’s the thing with setting goals or participating in challenges like Vlogtober, Inktober, Blogtober, etc. They all have a deadline. You do one thing every single day for the entire month. Having that deadline is key because you will reach a point where you think, “Why did I decide to do this stupid challenge?” Knowing there is an end in sight makes it a lot easier. If you set a goal to make one new drawing or whatever a day without a deadline it’s just not sustainable. You’re going to burn out. Goals need to challenge you, but they also need to be attainable otherwise you set yourself up for failure before you even begin. These goals/challenges with deadlines are something I’ve been into for awhile. They’re fun. They help keep me productive. And they also put some things into perspective. Things like how much time I waste doing things that don’t matter. Do I really need to watch that scene in Wolf Of Wall Street again? The one where Donnie asks Jordan how much money he makes in a month? No, I don’t need to. It’s a great scene, but it’s not really helping me accomplish anything.

Yes, I just watched the scene now to get that screenshot. Luckily, this time I can use the excuse that I “needed” it for this blog post. It’s taking all my will power now to not watch the scene with Spike Jonze. I love that one. Anyway…

I’m definitely one of those “flying by the seat of my pants” types when it comes to projects I’m working on. (And life in general, when I think about it.) It’s sort of like I’m productive, but I rarely feel accomplished. This is why I love these challenges. There is a stated objective and a deadline to accomplish that objective. On the last day of the challenge I get to tell myself, “I fucking did it!” It might sound cheesy, but nobody can ever take that away from me.

Here are a few challenges I’ve done that were really hard to do, but I was really stoked to have actually pulled them off. I once wrote a 50,000 word novel in one month. I filled an 80 page 5″ x 7″ sketchbook in 24 hours. I made one video a week for 3 months. The past 2 Octobers I took on the Vlogotber challenge, which is making one video a day for the entire month. Here’s a little plug to get some views on Youtube (don’t forget to subscribe too):
Vlogtober 2017 – My idea here was parody videos on what it’s like to be a famous art vlogger.
Vlogtober 2018 – This time around I made art advice videos to help out other artists.

Now honestly, these are all goals that can be accomplished. I know they can because I did them all, but they all required a lot of sacrifice. Not just personally, but to my family. When I wrote the novel in one month it was when Elliott was about 4 months old. The two years I did Vlogtober were pretty tough because I have a retail shop that I’m in about 60 hours a week. I could usually only record after hours and then I’d have to edit the video too. My family was seriously neglected during Vlogtober. The deadline helped them as much as it helped me though because they knew I’d be back to normal at the end of the month. I would love to do Vlogtober for a third year in a row, but I would like to see my family this month. To be honest though, I would totally do if running my retail shop didn’t take up so many hours a day. I would say there is about an hour of editing for every one minute of completed video. All day long I’ve been thinking, “Well…maybe I can just do raw, unedited, one-take videos every day.” But, I don’t have it in me. I tried making one the other day and although I attempted to film it all in one take after about twelve takes I realized I would be better off filming clips and editing them all together and then I’m just back at what I did last Vlogtober, so no thank you.

Needless to say, I really want to take on one of the many October Challenges and I’ve been beating my brain all day deciding which one to do. I landed on Blogtober, writing a blog post every day for the month, because it’s something I can do during business hours and it won’t cut into my art making time, which is after business hours. I really need that art making time because that’s the bread and butter of this operation.

Just before writing this post I toyed around with the idea of having a goal this month to do just one of the challenge things a day. Make a video one day. The next day make a drawing. The next day write a blog, but now that I think about it that’s just too loosey goosey for me. The thing that attracts me to these challenges is the structure that I lack during the rest of the year. Also, I would like to write and document more things on this blog. I seriously think about posting on here every day and then I never do. My last post was back in March, which is pretty pathetic. And when you think about it, blogging is all encompassing. If I want to make a video sometime during this month I can write about it here and share it with you. If I want to draw one of the Inktober prompts I can do that and write about it on here.

So, for 2019, BLOGTOBER is my challenge of choice. I will be posting one blog a day for the entire month. I have no idea what those posts will be, but it’s a challenging goal and I am going to kick this goals ass.

See you tomorrow!
– Jeff

Weekend Art Challenge Conquered: Turkey Hands

Gobble gobble!

Here are all the turkey hands submitted this past weekend for the “turkey hand” art challenge. I hope you enjoy them!

turkey hand
Mine ended up being a turkey head with what appears to be four finger puppets.

My seven year old niece, Brooklyn.

kendra lewis
Kendra Lewis
See more of her work at

justin binyon
Justin Binyon

taylor bender
Taylor Bender

leah grantham
Leah Grantham

ashley marie
Ashley Marie
I was super stoked to see Ashley sew a turkey hand.

Nicely done, everybody!
Thanks to all of you artists for joining me on this silly turkey art adventure!

And thanks to the rest of you for checking out the blog!

Gooble! Gobble!
– Jeff

Weekend Art Challenge: Turkey Hand

Thanksgiving is fast approaching so the challenge this weekend is a festive one. I challenge you all to draw or paint a turkey hand. Yes, a turkey hand! Just like you did in grade school. I’ve painted a turkey hand for the last two years and am such a procrastinator that I never posted my 2011 one until now.

turkey hand painting

This is all in good fun, so feel free to draw, paint, collage, stamp, silkscreen, cut & sew, etc.

At the end of the weekend I will feature all the turkey hands on this blog.

This “weekend art challenge” thing is new for me so I’m learning and creating as I go. This time around I’ve created a Facebook Event, which can be found at To get your turkey hand featured on the blog you must submit your image on that event page. First, “join” the event. Then simply post your image as you would a normal comment/status update on the event page. Just use the “add photo” option. Last week I had people send me images by twitter, instagram, facebook comment, facebook private message, email and text message. It was far too much to keep track of so this is my attempt at streamlining the process to make it easier for me.

I encourage you to add your images to instagram as well. If you do, please use the tag #weekendartchallenge

Also, if you would like to spread the word about this please do so by sharing this blog post (copy/paste this for a direct link: ) or the FB event ( on any of your social media streams.

Feel free to use this image to help promote.

Weekend Art Challenge #2

I am excited to see what all of you come up with.

Gobble Gobble,

Weekend Art Challenge Conquered: Paint A Self Portrait

Clap your hands together for the people that took on the weekend art challenge of painting a self portrait.

Here are all the portraits that were made this past weekend for the challenge. Some were painted, some were drawn. Some were big, some were small. Enjoy!

self portrait for the #weekendartchallenge
Me. With Antlers.

self portrait by @slomygosh for the #weekendartchallenge
Coral Kessler

Evy (10 years old)

self portrait by reid cain for the #weekendartchallenge
Reid Cain

instagram: pianosnpaint

sophie wilson
Sophie Wilson

justin binyon
Justin Binyon
instagram: justb72777

jack harold misiaszek
Jack Harold Misiaszek

susan barodte
Susan Barodte

sarita li johnson
Sarita Li Johnson

leah grantham

leah grantham
Leah Grantham

This was just a random spontaneous idea I had and I’m stoked to see people take the challenge.

Thanks to all of you that participated. And to everybody else, join us the next time around. And for those of you that enjoy lurking, thanks for being a creeper.

See ya!
– Jeff

Weekend Art Challenge: Paint A Self Portrait

Henri Matisse

After all these years of blogging this is the first time I’ve stated a “weekend art challenge”. I invite each and every one of you to participate. Skill level is not to be considered here. The idea is to grab some paints, throw them on a canvas (or wood panel, as I prefer) and hope that when you’re done the paint looks something similar to what you look like. If it doesn’t, who cares. Have fun with it, get creative, and step out of your comfort zone.

Keith Haring

Egon Schiele

For me, it will definitely be a stepping out of my comfort zone thing. The last self portrait I made was…I have no idea. There is one that comes to mind from, I’m guessing, 1998. There might have been a couple of attempted self portraits in sketchbooks from 1998-2001, but I honestly can only recall two self portrait paintings. Both of them screen printed. It’s sad to admit, but I just spent the past 45 minutes trying to find photos of them and all my effort was totally wasted. Amazingly enough, I can remember where they are in the physical world, but not in the digital. One is a rolled up canvas in my grandmother’s shed. The other is a stretched canvas in my dad’s barn.

Andy Warhol

Chuck Close

I will be working on my own self portrait this weekend and I hope you are up for the challenge as well. I am trying to figure out a way we can all share each others paintings when the weekend comes to an end. Possibly a flickr page or a facebook group? I haven’t decided yet, but I’ll think of something.

Aubrey Beardsley

Frida Kahlo

Obviously, there are no “official” rules for this challenge. It’s all in good fun. Painting is certainly encouraged but if you’re not up to that then feel free sticking to drawing…pen, pencil, charcoal, crayon, whatever.

Leonardo da Vinci

maurits cornelis
M.C. Escher

Salvador Dali

Good luck!
I know I’ll need it.

– Jeff

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