Most people know October as the pumpkin-spiced, apple cider saturated month-long celebration of Halloween. However, in some corners of the Internet, October is known as "Inktober." Over the course of the month, artists post their work on their online platform of choice. (Tumblr and Instagram are especially popular posting grounds.) The mediums and subject matter are endless.
While the trend is overwhelmingly positive and supportive in nature, a strong phenomenon of self-deprecation somehow manages to manifest itself. Artists caption their work with derogatory phrases, skew the amount of time/effort they put into the piece, and suppress their pride in an effort to seem humble. The response of their audience often denounces the artist's claims. Yet, what started as a celebration of artistic talent turns into parade of forced affirmations laced with toxicity. If the audience doesn't denounce the artist's attacks on their own work and talent, they seem callous. If the artist doesn't downplay the quality of the content they post, they come across as boastful.
The needs to stop.
Nothing good can come of a cycle based on such negativity. As an artist, one should be allowed to be proud of their work. Since positive feedback is often used a form of validation, wouldn't feedback that's given honestly be more valuable than feedback given out of obligation? The absence of obligation could lessen the amount of attention the work receives, but what remains would be of greater value. In short, it's a win-win for both camps.
Finally, it's important to note that there's no golden ticket to participate in Inktober. Even if you are unsure of your skills, put your work out there and be proud of it. You may be surprised at the response. Bottom line, Inktober is supposed to be fun. So, whatever you create, keep it up. There's still two weeks to go!