Wednesday, June 17, 2015

Blog Adventures: ROW80

I did something a little different with ROW80 this block.  I made a smaller, simpler set of goals for the Spring block.  Instead of focusing on numerous, specific goals, many of which felt like chores to be avoided, I chose the 2 categories I'd given the most attention and interest to during the Jan-March block, and I assigned a frequency to them.  Instead of "3 sets of 3 exercises 3 days in a row, and get outside" I settled on "Exercise/get outside 5 times a week."  Blog, sketch, and crafting-related goals merged into "Do something creative 5 times a week." 
Then I posted my goals in April, and set them aside.  Also different.  Instead of posting about my goals once or twice a week, I gave myself a creative blog challenge.
My big goal for the April-June block was to reach 100 posts by May 3rd, the 2-year anniversary of my blog.  I though it would be a nice round number and time window to celebrate.  I haven't done tutorials lately, or felt much of a writing urge, or crafted as often this spring.  Or finished projects.  so I was feeling kind of creatively stagnant.  And I wanted to do something creative and try using my blog in a different way to meet that goal. 
One thing I had been doing with consistency (since my NaNoWriMo/DigiWriMo blogging challenge, somewhat ironically), was sketching and posting my doodles in my blog posts.  I had started playing around with sketching a little hedgehog interacting with various objects based on the letters of the alphabet.  I had about a dozen sketches done, from all over the alphabet, and I decided that what I would do was start posting that series. 
I ended up fulfilling two (or three--four?--lets just say, multiple) birds with one stone--I was somewhat regularly creative, I flew past 100 posts 3 days early(!), I published my series online on multiple social media platforms, I had the pressure of publishing the sketches to push me to finish the series, and I succeeded in finishing a creative project.  And I finally tried one of the ABC/April blog challenges, where you try to post something every day of April (I did take weekends off and continue into May, but the spirit was there!). 
It was really neat to watch my sketching style morph as time went on.  Early letters were very monochromatic and featured isolated objects on a white background.  Later letters became humorous and whimsical narratives set in multi-colored landscapes, and featured much more variety in scale. 
You can find my finished series here!
Now, I did experience the (inevitable?) burn out as I neared the end.  I was scheduling a few of the last sketches on the days they were meant to post, and I obviously haven't posted anything here since I finished my series 2 1/2 weeks ago.
But I blew past my creative and blog goals for this block :)  In addition to sketching, I have been altering thrift store clothes, reading, and catching up on movies with friends.  Good times.
Regarding my other goals: It's been super hot and muggy, and I have been burnt out from work.  Cooking and errands have been things to be avoided (less good).  But I am doing my bare minimum of stretching and getting outside.  I definitely feel the difference when I get fresh air, but I am having to fit more of it into the cooler weekend mornings and weekday evenings.  I really, really do want to up this goal and become more habitually active, but this continues to be a challenge.
Progress towards future plans/goals: This continues to be a bit too big and back-burner right now.  But I do feel that I achieved my overarching April-June goals of choosing to focus on goals that brought me enjoyment while still offering myself a new challenge.
[X] 1) Do something creative: 5x a week.
[X] 2) Stretch, exercise, or get outside: 5x a week.
[   ] 3) Do something towards a futuristic goal: 2x a week.
[X!] 4) Hit 100th blog post for the blog's 2-year marker on May 3rd!
--This post makes 124!