Challenge: Starting Points

Your challenge, should you choose to accept it:

Select one simple starting point from nature and recreate it several times in different ways in your sketchbook.

This challenge is hosted by Helen Wells

Helen Wells

Helen is the author of the book ‘Expressive sketchbooks: developing creative skills, courage and confidence’ published by Quarry Books and the creator of an online class about developing your own Expressive Sketchbook. She is passionate about sketchbooks and art journals as a powerful tool for creative discovery and development. Her own sketchbook use is the cornerstone of her artistic career and practice. She became a professional artist later in life and credits using sketchbooks for this career pivot.

Here’s your host’s take on the challenge:

More about Helen Wells

What is art journaling to you? 

Sketchbooks are the foundation of my artistic practice. They are where I try things out, develop and track ideas, explore and experiment. They’re a magical place to meet my creative self on the page and get to know her better. They’re where I play with ideas, material and approaches. A place where I can test things out, embrace mistakes, learn, make and create with no agenda or end game.

Sketchbooks are a place for me to collect and curate the fragments of my art making exercises. A filing cabinet of my ideas and creations. A safe place to gather together the threads of my art making.

A place where I can store and record my art making and reflect upon it, look back on it, sift through it and join the dots. My sketchbooks help me to better understand the things about my own art making which interest and fascinate me, the things about the world that interest and fascinate me.

What does community do for your art?

Community in art making is so important. I believe that in making art we connect with the world, we connect with ourselves and we connect with others. Creative folk have gone before us and lit the way for us and so we in turn light the way for others. And so we all help and support each other to be the artists we want to be.

Art Showcase

Action Steps

Bring your imperfect, messy self, take what you need, and know that more than zero is enough. Click here for tips on making the most out of the challenges. 


Accept, adapt, or decline the challenge. Create.


Share your art in the gallery and your heart in the forums.