Are you preparing for Inktober 2017?

The mornings are getting cooler and pumpkin flavored everything is now gracing ALL the menus so it can only mean one thing… it’s time for INKtober!!!

After completing the Inktober challenge with my students for the past couple of years this has become an important aspect of my fall schedule.  As I’m not teaching full time  anymore (although with 90 students this term it certainly feel likes it sometimes) I have a little more time to make this year’s project what I’ve always really wanted it to be.

If you haven’t heard about Inktober yet, watch the video below or click on the link above to learn more.


Last year I created a handy list of 6 ways anyone can be more successful with the Inktober challenge. I use these 6 tips, summarized below (and explored more in the original post), personally and my students reported that this worked well at helping them keep on track and get the most out of their experiences.


For 2017 I will be working on the following:

  1. Goal: This Inktober, I’d like to learn how to better document my artistic process using video and streaming technology and focus on integrating my efforts to learn more about basic botany with depictions of animals in my backyard.
  2. Game Plan: During this last week of September I will purchase or create a small challenge specific sketchbook to archive my drawings and sketches in one place, thoroughly clean and refill my technical pens, and create thumbnails for some preliminary drawing ideas so that I can get off to a good start. I will also download some of the many recent photos of backyard animals to use as references in my drawings. Some people like to work with daily challenges like the official Inktober prompt but I think I’ll wing it this year.
  3. PerimetersI’ll focus on botany and backyard animals this month but I’ll also try to incorporate other media into my work (at least once every 3-4 days) unlike in previous years.
  4. Managing My Time: I plan to limit the scale of my finished drawings to 6×6 inches. I’d like to work with 4×5 and 5×5 compositions this year. This will help ensure that I can complete more complicated detail work but still have more room than last years 3×3 format. I also plan to start sketching out some of the compositions ahead of time so that on days when I’m busier I can focus on inking and skip the time required to plan or layout a composition.
  5. Sharing My Work: I will be sharing work via Instagram, Facebook, and YouTube this year – you can follow me on IG (@mlevacy) or subscribe to my YouTube channel for updated videos but friends and family will also see these creations in my private Facebook feed. Once a week I’ll post a recap summary of the works here on my blog like I did last year. My husband it trying to get me to live stream on Twitch but I’ll see how it goes – if there’s enough interest after the first half of the month I’ll consider it.
  6. Kindness: I will be kind to myself if it takes me longer than I’d like to finish stuff and I will not stress out if I take more than 1 day to complete one drawing. As long as I try to actively devote time each day to ink work that helps support my goals, I’ll feel like I’m doing what I set out to do.


At the end of last year I was starting to work with abstracted imagery with plants and birds such as these two drawings from October 29 and 30. I really liked this direction but in the time since, I haven’t returned to it. I’ve recently been creating a lot more botanical pieces and I feel that these two veins might intersect nicely.

I’m excited to see where this goes so stay tuned.

Note: I’ll continue to post specifically about the progress I’m making with the botanical identification posters for my ongoing 52 week challenge throughout October. I don’t plan to overlap the Inktober challenge with these other goals.

Happy Inktober 🙂


  1. This is a great list! This is the first year I’m participating in inktober so I’m looking for all the advice I can get. I’m looking forward to seeing everyone’s posts and their progress. What a great idea to get students involved!

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