On April 8th I decided to draw one LOST illustration a day for 108 days. I finished the 108th drawing on July 24th.
Why did you decide to draw 108 illustrations based off of a tv show?
Never has there been a show for me quite like LOST. On April 8th, 2015 at 23 minutes and 42 seconds after 4, the numbers (that appear in LOST quite frequently) aligned and all LOST fans geeked out a little. Many posted a photo of their own hand mimicking Charlie's (see photo below).
I wanted to suspend that celebration a little longer than just a day, so I followed a LOST trick and added all the numbers (4 + 8 + 15 + 16 + 23 + 42 = 108), giving me my window of 108 days to complete my project.
Did you set any restrictions for yourself?
I wanted each illustration to only take one day's time. I restricted my color palette to 7 different colors and I also wanted things to be contained in a square, because this project was going to be posted on Instagram. Without these limitations on myself, I would have bitten off more than I could chew, become frustrated, cry, and then stopped prioritizing it in my day.
Did you design them in bunches or did you do one every day?
I usually sketched in bulk, but would execute only one drawing in Adobe Illustrator a day. A few weekends I was out of town without a computer, so I made sure to have those sketches done in advance.
Did you have an idea of what you were going to do each day?
About a week before 4/8/15, I made a very long list of potential things I could illustrate.
I thought part of the difficulty would come down to the last twenty or so days when my mind would forget what I should draw. I didn't plan it out day-by-day, but it was helpful to have the list to fall back on in case I felt unmotivated.
What is your process for creating an illustration?
I began by sketching out a few things off the list. It usually took me a couple times to get an angle I was happy with or the perspective of how I wanted it to look. Many times I would make notes of what color would go where, to make sure I didn't use all seven and be lost without a background. I'd then "scan" it into my computer by taking a photo of it through Photo Booth. It was only going to be a reference, so I didn't need anything fancy. I'd go over my sketch in Illustrator with the Pen tool. I don't have the best of luck with my Illustrator running smoothly when I start to bring in textures, so all my texture was added in Photoshop.
Which illustration was the most stressful?
I definitely remember Day 32: The Life and Death of Jeremy Bentham to be particularly frustrating. I am incredibly happy with the final illustration, but that took about 7 rounds (and suggestions from Ryan) to get it there.
Day 5: "I don't know what is more disquieting: the fact that the rest of the statue is missing or that it has four toes" was difficult to get the right perspective and figure out how much detail to include, and Day 28: The man with the eyepatch. The man that never dies wasn't easy because I wasn't really sure how I wanted the end illustration to look.
Day 107 and 108 weren't necessarily stressful, but I did put a lot of pressure on myself to get those right just because, like the creators of LOST, I had known what those last two drawings were going to be from the beginning. (har, har)
Which illustration is your favorite?
I already know I won't be able to choose just one, so here are my top eight:
Day 14: "A guy goes nuts if he ain't got nobody. Don't make no difference who the guy is, long's he's with you. I tell ya, I tell ya a guy gets too lonely an' he gets sick."
Day 25: "Have a cluckity-cluck-cluck day, Hugo."
Day 38: The pan out of the camera, the gasp at the realization Locke was in a wheelchair before the Island, followed by the greatest line, "Don't tell me what I can't do."
Day 55: "#3 The Christmas Liam Gave Me the Ring."
Day 64: "Two players, two sides. One is light, one is dark."
Day 65: "What is that?" "It's all I had."
Day 84: Hail Mary, Full of Heroin.
Day 100: "This is what happens when you bring women. She's probably off chasing a butterfly." — Montand's Last Words
An interesting note: the ones I liked the most were not always feeling the love on Instagram.
How did you feel during the process?
To be honest, sort of in a constant state of panic. It was more time consuming than I originally thought it would be. I am not only working a 40 hour job, but finishing work for two freelancing clients, planning my wedding with Ryan, launching an etsy site, and trying to have a social life along with completing one LOST illustration a day (Sleep? Oh yeah. Does sleep really need to fit in?).
One memory in particular, Day 15, I told Ryan I was going to stop. I went from posting one photo a week on Instagram to one photo a day and I felt like I was annoying all my friends. Ryan challenged me to keep at it, especially because he saw how excited I was to start this in the first place.
I'm really glad I stuck it out. On Day 36, Ryan posted a thread on reddit about my project, unbeknownst to me, and a lot of people were liking what I was up to. I also had a couple new followers that reached out to me and let me know how much they enjoyed what I was doing. That was super unexpected and really exciting for me. You guys, I even had someone I have never met in real life, @naci_erkan, make a t-shirt out of my first 36 days! I seriously was geeking out.
Unfortunately, I would say around Day 70, I hit a serious motivation slump. Many days had to be posted in bulk to "catch up" to the final deadline. The list I had made up was dwindling and I was not sure I really had it in me to continue. I managed to put on my big girl pants and keep on drawing through the uncertainty. I eventually got back in the groove and finished really strong!
How do you feel now that it's complete?
This sums it up. I feel so grateful I have the people in my life to encourage me to keep at it. I am taking the time to pat myself on the back for sticking with it and I think the final collection is pretty sweet. I am also a little relieved that I can just sit back with this beer and watch Netflix instead of trying to balance a sketchbook on my knee, too. (Okay, who am I kidding, I'm still doing that, but now there's no deadline looming).
What have you learned about yourself?
As a designer, I've realized there is a happy place with textures. I started with too many for my comfort and toned them down as I continued.
I realized I really thrive under a timeline (and a deadline) — otherwise I can just make excuses to keep pushing it off. I realized I can make time in my day to just design for me. And by designing just for me, I will probably find someone out in the universe that digs what I'm doing, too.
As a person, I've realized that I have a hard time saying, "no". I try to juggle many things at a time. It goes really well for a few days and then I wonder why I can't just be given a third arm or four more hours in a day until I finally collapse and need to sleep for twelve hours straight just to become sane again. Seriously, Ryan is such a lucky man. (Or am I the lucky one for having him comfort me in my times of un-sane-ness?) This whole process has made me more aware of what I really can take on in a day, week, month.
Will any of the illustrations be available for purchase?
There will eventually be prints of select days available, along with potential for a book (as long as I can find the right price to get them made). For the time being, comment on this photo of your favorite illustration and I will send you a 20% off promo code to be used on the future LOST merch. Thanks for being a part of #108daysofLOST and Namaste.
See all 108 Days of LOST by clicking here.