Twice started, once completed, #the100dayproject was an important turning point for me. Why, you may ask? It unintentionally kick-started my illustration career. To those of you who don’t know me, I was a graphic designer for almost a decade until I realised my passion lied elsewhere. I had not picked up a paintbrush for ages. Digital design and Adobe softwares were the center of my universe and I was not happy. One of my friends recommended I try out #the100dayproject and it changed my career path.
So, What is #the100dayproject?
“#The100DayProject is a free art project that takes place online. Every spring, thousands of people all around the world commit to 100 days of exploring their creativity.
Anyone can join (yes, that means you!). The idea is simple: choose a project, do it every day for 100 days, and share your process on Instagram with the hashtag #The100DayProject.” – The 100 Day Project Creators
When I was in school, I would spend an endless amount of time painting. All I’ve always wanted was to be an artist. It is hard to remember a time when I wanted to be anything else. I got accepted into art school and ended up being a designer. (That’s a story for some other time)
When I became a designer, I stopped painting and started using digital tools for work. I sketched and scribbled ideas on my sketchbook. Yes, its not the same. There was something missing. But I had lost faith and motivation to create art. There was always some excuse, I don’t have time for this, I’m not good at this and so on. #the100day project was a tiny exercise of doing something daily; as the creators put it, a “bite-sized way to play creatively”. It revived something I had let go in the past. The first time around, I abandoned the challenge at Day 70. The second time it took me a really long time (way more than 100 days), but I completed it.
When my friend introduced me to this challenge, I didn’t realise how much fun it would be. It was a journal of my own, an account of what I felt like on that day, whatever my little heart felt like. The first time I did this challenge, I discovered an interesting thing about myself. I loved drawing food! My portfolio grew and so did my client base.
Expectation vs Reality
As always, what we think will happen and what actually happens is never the same. My Expectation : I will spend 10 mins and create something everyday. My Reality: I cheated and ended up doing 3 at one go mostly on Saturdays. I felt so relieved when I was all caught up. I felt like a kid who had forgotten to do his homework. First time around, I was experimenting with a bunch of art supplies. The second time, I specifically used watercolour and the progress was outstanding. I understood the medium and more importantly understood my strength and weaknesses.
What keeps me going
“If you want to go fast, go alone. If you want to go far, go together.”
This does seem to be true. The fact that this project was on Instagram really kept me going. It felt great to be a part of #the100dayproject community. To see what everyone had done that day put a smile on my face every morning. A big thank you also to everyone who liked, commented and showed support. You have no idea what it meant!
Have you tried #the100dayproject? What was your experience like? Let me know in the comments below!