Jump to content
  • 0
luvkirby4ever

How do you create self-imposed deadlines?

Question

I was listening to a podcast (I'm pretty sure it was "Still Buffering", episode "How to Procrastinate") when I heard an artist talk about setting up deadlines in order to be productive with their art.  She talked about how if she didn't set a deadline that she would infinitely work on the art piece, and that that's the reason why setting a deadline was important for her.  Otherwise, she'd never consider anything "finished".

As an artist, I can immensely relate to that.  I've been trying to work on a fan/webcomic for awhile now but I have problems with completing pages.  I could go into a lot of details but the tldr version of it is that I am a fairly unskilled artist who needs a lot of time to work on pieces but am taking forever to make pages.  So I've decided that I want to create a self-imposed deadline for myself.

What's the best way to approach this?  I've participated twice in Inktober (a drawing challenge that requires drawing 1 picture for each day of October) so I'm a bit familiar with community-inspired deadlines but doing something all on my own?  How do I make myself accountable?  Also, how do I figure out an appropriate deadline?  I want to post weekly but I've got to do this enough to improve my skills first- as of right now the only weekly pages I can manage based on my schedule is if work gets cancelled for an additional 2 days and I know what I'm doing.  But at the same time, by 2 weeks it both feels too long and at that point I get sick of the page and start putting it off because I start hating it.

Any tips are appreciated :o 

For reference, I ideally go through 3 page drafts ("scrap"->"rough"->"final"), where the final always takes up at least 75% of the total completion time.  The page shown below took a week to complete (based on a schedule miracle, small number of panels, and a rare instance of knowing what to do).  These are what my "rough" and "final" layers tend to look like:

5a67b9684b996_roughpage.thumb.png.f68cad3f68eaeb9e22d4d19662e59a60.png5a67b9934c1b3_Chapter0Page9.thumb.png.04e0d665fc0589aa544758f36948981b.png

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

4 answers to this question

Recommended Posts

  • 1

Maybe the answer is less about the finished project and more about giving yourself a goal of a certain amount of time per day (twice a week?) that you work on something, and see how that works out for you. It may also give you a better idea of how long something really takes you, and then you may be able to set completion goals. :) Keep in mind, I have zero frame of reference when it comes to art unless you count stick-figuring. Good luck! 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 0

If you find a good answer let me know. I rock at completing assignments on time but am absolute garbage setting my own deadlines.

The one thing I do that makes me feel less insane is that I make sure to work on something every single day. Even if it's just for a little while and I only work on one drawing or panel, it still means progress.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 0

A couple methods I'd recommend:

  • setting hard and fast deadlines for posting stuff online! put a time that you're going to post the page on the website and holding yourself to it can be hard, but it'll help you get in the habit if you feel accountable to readers. (if the idea of this stresses you out, maybe find a friend or friends with a similar goal and sort of hold each other accountable? the idea is to get that community motivation like from Inktober) - you could even do a trial run for a month and do something like diary comics or single page narratives to test schedule and workflow and learn how quickly you can expect yourself to work, etc
  • doing some timed drawings as practice, and honing your workflow to the essentials! 
  • knowing yourself and your process and adjusting your deadlines accordingly - if every week is too much and will stress you out, maybe start off every 2 weeks to give yourself that cushion, and if you feel your process speeding up you can jump to weekly
  • either alternatively or in addition to the above, you could also try working on a seasonal status and work on building up a small backlog of pages before launch and during the breaks in order to have a just-in-case stack for when you're travelling, or get sick and don't work as much, or any other stumbling blocks that happen like losing a file, etc.

I'm not going to bullet this because it's not technically deadline advice, but one more quick suggestion: try to have as much fun as possible with whatever you're creating, you'll most likely be driven to work on it more, and making art should ideally be a fun, challenging thing that doesn't just add deadlines and stress to your life.

Sorry for a huge chunk of text, I didn't mean for this to so long, but I hope it helps!

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

×