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What I learned from drawing every day (about six months in)

100 day challenge building habits cartooning creating every day drawing every day entrepreneurship illustration shop sticker making sticker shop stickers

If you're considering trying this out, I'd highly recommend it!

My reason for initiating this habit was to build toward my sticker shop, and I feel that this morning habit really delivered on what I was looking for, and also gave me some unexpected insight.

Drawing every day helped me learn Procreate, get comfortable drawing on the iPad, develop a more efficient workflow, evolve a more cohesive style, become less attached to my work, and replace a mostly useless morning habit with a fruitful one.

It also gave me clarity for the direction of my shop and the confidence and momentum to take on other skill-building habits that'll build and improve it. I was pretty focused on drawing new sticker designs, and so far, I've made about 180 new sticker designs - a new sticker almost every day, on average.

When I set out to draw in Procreate for 20 minutes every morning, I had several reasons for approaching it the way I did, but my main vision was to have a huge library of fun designs for an amazing online sticker shop.

Also, I wanted a wall of stickers!! It'd be tangible feedback that I was building something real.

I felt the best way to start would be a timed daily habit instead of an outcome-based daily habit. I think it was about a month in when I felt comfortable completing a sticker each morning - usually this ended up taking about an hour.

Some things I wanted to tackle with this project:

I wanted to replace my procrasti-learning habit.

Being a research junkie comes with the cost of not taking action. I love me a good artrepreneur success story, and hearing these stories is fun and inspirational. I definitely think there are healthy and practical ways to take what you learn from these stories, too, but what I really needed to do was work on my own art.

I decided I wouldn't let this creep into my morning routine any more, so I just let it back in later in the day like while I was doing the dishes or something.

I needed to improve my workflow.

I needed this BADLY. I was so annoyed with how long it'd take to digitalize my work in order for it to become a sticker, that I would just not do it. I had a ton of ideas in my sketchbooks not being actualized - I wanted to see and hold those finished stickers!

I wanted to be "in flow" with designing. The kind of flow state where I'd look forward to starting, and then the time would melt away as I completed designed after design.

I wanted to be less attached to my designs.

I figured that having a faster more sustainable workflow would help on this one, and it really did. My designs had been too precious to me for my liking and I think it's because they were so difficult for me to create. Creating every day gave me experience with abundance when it came to my creations.

I will never run out of ideas or ways to communicate with my art.

I wanted to build a huge library of sticker designs -

Like I mentioned before - a wall filled with them!!! While I think it's important to have a sustainable practice, it's also fun to have a vision for the future, and for me, I loved the idea of having a full wall filled with different stickers. The idea of it just makes me smile. While I haven't put this together yet, I'll probably start putting this together soon.


A more productive morning routine

Instead of reading and trying to half-ass reverse engineer other people's success stories, I worked on my own. After grabbing my morning coffee, I sat down with the iPad and just created. Starting my day off like this provided a lot of mental clarity and momentum to keep moving forward.

Less hesitation to start and better workflow

I no longer hesitate drawing on the iPad because now I have a process for creating my stickers with it. Sticker designing has become quicker - I can sit down, and turn several of my ideas from my sketchbook from the week into stickers in the amount of time it used to take to create just one.

I'm still working on the balance of line work, and choosing the right colors and how to handletter, but the knowledge gap keeps closing.

Stronger design style

The workflow thing lead to a stronger design style, which is something I hadn't given much thought to. I already had my own style, but it's evolved. And my drawing style is still evolving. With nearly 200 designs now, I've actually already had to retire and rework some of my starter stickers that make me kinda cringe.

Clarity, confidence and momentum

A daily drawing practice has given me confidence and momentum to continue making my stickers and pursue other sustainable skill-building habits for my online shop.

I hope that you got something out of this!

Please share in the comments how you found it helpful or what you found from doing a similar project.

  • Kali on

    Hey Jane, I remember you doing a 100 day project for your meditative line practice and that yielding some interesting results! What do you think you’ll do for your next one? -Kali

  • Jane on

    This is such a fantastic post. Thank you for sharing your experience with building a game-changing habit. I’ve really enjoyed watching your stickers grow and evolve over time, and I’m often in awe of the variety of stickers you create. Procrasti-learning is a big problem for me too, and you’re completely right. You just have to jump in and do the work. Pairing the constraint/new habit with an existing one (morning coffee) is really inspiring. I’m going to give it a try myself. Thanks Kali!

  • Kali on

    Hi Randal,

    Thanks for leaving a comment! I hear you on the having too many ideas thing. I found that having the decision already made – “You’re going to wake up and draw a sticker for twenty minutes.” to be kind of liberating in a sense because it could shut all the other chit chat in my head off. I also think that having the practice centered around a project is beneficial – unless it’s more for a therapy thing, because that way you know you’re building toward something. For me, drawing for stickers, specifically, for instance, is a totally different train of thought than drawing and designing for other products, and I needed the constraints. -Kali

  • Randal Smith on

    I can relate to this so much! Procrasti-learning is something I am really great at 🤣 I am inspired to try this practice and see what happens. I have so many ideas that I have a really hard time picking one.

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