While grappling with a couple of other projects this week that have proved rather more troublesome than I had anticipated, and desperately casting about for new procrastination exercises – having exhausted all the usual suspects, and a few other more seasonally-specific ones (mowing the lawn; doing a, frankly, unnecessary amount of washing just for the thrill of sun-dried laundry [yes, I said ‘thrill’ – I am over 30 now, y’know…]; inspecting all my freckles for signs of potentially-cancerous mutation; etc.) – I was reminded of the brilliant Daily Doodle , courtesy of an unusually welcome update in my Facebook newsfeed (a supremely timely intervention – I was teetering on the brink of having to break out the Emergency Procrastination Activity List: as it is, the oven remains slightly grimier than is probably ideal, but I don’t have to reclaim the Marigolds from my mono printing kit. Win!).
Daily Doodle, brainchild of the brilliant Mark Chambers – award winning illustrator and writer of children’s picture books, and generally highly talented chap (represented by The Bright Agency) – is a daily theme, posted online (Facebook and Twitter), open to doodlers of all ages and abilities to have a bit of no-pressure, sketchy, scribbly (or highly finished, as in some cases) fun with. The ‘creative outcomes’ are then posted back to the online community – via Facebook, Tumblr, Twitter and Instagram – to enjoy and be inspired by 🙂 It is a masterstroke of an idea – not dissimilar to Illustration Friday and Sketch Dailies (although IF is a weekly exercise, and SD – from what I understand – focuses more on character-based themes) – and a happily-indulged addition to the Procrastination arsenal. It’s a great ‘warm-up’ activity if you’re creative grey matter is behaving a little sluggishly – despite multiple caffeine-based offerings – or your drawing muscles need a spot of encouragement. Part of Daily Doodle’s appeal is its transience: if you aren’t especially moved to creativity by a suggested theme, there’ll be another along tomorrow, and there’s less pressure to create something really ‘finished’ than might be perceived in, e.g., a weekly challenge. It’s a great ‘warm-up’ activity if you’re creative grey matter is behaving a little sluggishly – despite multiple caffeine-based offerings – or your drawing muscles need a spot of encouragement.
However, some weeks the temptation to indulge in truly daily doodling is just too compelling to resist – this week being a perfect case in point: Roald Dahl/Quentin Blake-themed week, to coincide with the ‘Quentin Blake : Inside Stories‘ exhibition opening this week at the newly-minted House of Illustration in King’s Cross. Woohoo! (Thrillingly, Sir Q.B. also appeared on ITV’s This Morning, alongside Lauren Child and the perennially-dour [some might say morose…] Axel Scheffler – you can still watch the, lamentably-short, segment on ITV Player here for a few  more days.) Alas, I did miss one instalment – the #JamesAndTheGiantPeach theme – but, as this is my least favourite of Roald Dahl’s otherwise undeniably awesome tales, I am reconciled to perhaps catching up at a later date (i.e. over the weekend, when I suspect there may be other less fun projects to dodge…). According to the afore-described nature of Daily Doodles, these sketches have already all been posted online, but for those whom might have missed them and be interested, I have included them below. Daily Doodles also collates a gallery of images from each day’s theme within its Facebook photos, so please do mosey along there to see the many and varied ways in which other doodlers responded to the topics – there is some fantastic talent out there!
Also, Daily Doodles announced yesterday that some of the doodles that have been submitted over the course of the week would be selected to be shown at the House of Illustration’s House Party slideshow tomorrow night, as part of the celebrations: I was delighted to hear that my foxy poultry-pilferer will be one of them! 🙂