InkTober time!

October is the start of the best time of the year, isn’t it? Great weather, Dassera, Oktoberfest and the general sense of joie de vivre brought about by the imminent holiday season. However, of late, it has also become that time of the year when artists take to their sketchpads, turning what started as idle doodles into works of art. InkTober, is upon us.

Started in 2009 by American artist Jake Parker, InkTober has over the years, evolved into a movement, taking the world by storm. “I created InkTober in 2009 as a challenge to improve my inking skills and develop positive drawing habits. It has since grown into a worldwide endeavour with thousands of artists taking on the challenge every year. Anyone can do InkTober, just pick up a pen and start drawing,” says Parker on InkTober’s website.

And have they started! It is quite amazing what a black pen and white sheet of paper can do. The movement has taken the internet by storm, with artists popping up out of the blue, from the quiet girl who sits behind you in class to the invisible vandal whose work greets you as you walk out of your home in the morning to that one guy you see every day at the chaiwala’s. The website has a schedule, assigning a theme to each day and its quite flabbergasting to open one’s news feed at the end of the day and be smacked full on in the face by art.

“I’ve been drawing for a while now and it was all over my Tumblr feed, so I decided to give it a shot” says Akanksha Shyam “Lately it’s music that’s been inspiring me. Just random songs. That and people. I like to draw my perspective of what I think they’re seeing” she adds.

Ankita Chawla however took to it because of Instagram. “I follow Jake Parker and a bunch of other artists and that’s what got me going. I like to draw visual descriptions of the conversations I’ve had. The themes are easy and I can adapt my art to that.”

The basic rules are listed on the website. That, along with a list of recommended brands of stationery. It is quite simple to follow and even if you aren’t up to drawing every day, you can post every alternate day or even just once a week. It also has downloadable templates with the InkTober logo and exhibits art from all the previous years.

Art has the power to change the world and something of this magnitude is well on its way to being Earth shattering, if not already there. It’s quite insane to see the stuff that comes out and one gets quite intrigued by the different ways in which people are expressing different things, from the glorious sensation of taking one’s bra off after a long day to stimulating conversations one had with complete strangers. In the words of Louis Armstrong, “And I think to myself, what a wonderful world.”