On the 1st of January this year I painted a painting and when I labelled it Day 1 I wasn't really thinking that I'd be committing to doing the same thing every day for a whole year.
Now, 365 days later and that's exactly what I did. One painting per day for 365 days in a row.
Some days were easier than others and I definitely have paintings I like more than others.
January felt easy. I was mostly just working out how to not put too much water onto the paper.
And then came February.
Lilly and I started playing Dungeons & Dragons with some friends of ours in February and it definitely had an influence on my paintings.
The characters we became and the adventures we embarked on would find their way into many paintings over the year.
Colin, our dungeon master (some would say the best dungeon master), always puts so much effort into creating the world around us. The framed original painting of him as our DM sits on a shelf next to us as we play, even to this day.
In March I had a few ideas about steam punk Jurassic Park stuff.
And started a series of this little astronaut character and their alien dog.
April saw me pass the 120 paintings mark.
I felt like April was a growth month for learning a bunch of new techniques. I have Lilly to thank for showing me some new ideas about mixing colours for shading and for texturing with dry brush.
In May I decided to focus more on the drawing side of things and less on the painting side.
With that in mind I tried a few more detailed drawings and a few comics.
I then shifted focus to lighting and coloured light.
At this stage I was almost half way through the project.
I noticed that my skills had improved a great deal and not only was I taking on more challenging ideas but I was also completing them in shorter time. What used to take an hour was now taking about twenty minutes.
Another month down and a bunch more paintings completed.
I did a ton of non-project365 painting in July. React Riot, a 48 hour hackathon, was on and we decided to make a hand painted adventure game. I painted all of the backgrounds while Lilly painted all of the characters.
It was a huge amount of effort but it was well worth it. The weekend was super fun and best of all, we won the hackathon!
You can check out the game we made and see the art for yourself. See if you can make it to Granny's house.
We played a lot of D&D in August and that is reflected in my favourite paintins from the month.
Colin played his first game as an actual party character. Jarp Stormbeard was a fierce dwarf and a valued party member.
The theme of September was finding my own style, not just in how to paint but also what to paint. I seemed to get the best reactions from my animal related paintings.
And October was mostly more of the same.
November was a huge month for me. This month I did my first markets and opened my Etsy shop.
Node Knockout, another 48 hour hackathon was also on again (and we won again). The game we made for it didn't feature any painting this time.
November also saw the indroduction of the character of Coco the Cat.
I'd been wanting to do a parody of "Dogs Playing Poker" for a while and finally found the time to paint it.
While sitting at my stall at the Etsy Made Local Markets I was live painting. It was really fun to see people just come up and watch me. One lady bought an original and even commisioned another original.
Then December rolled around and the end was in site. I had had a lot of fun over the year but I was also looking forward to being done with the project.
And that was it! One painting a day for a whole year.
I felt like I'd learnt a great deal from the exercise and recommend you give it a go some time.