I’m doing a challenge and I’m shit at challenges

So I’m participating in Alphabet Superset, a 26-week creative challenge created by the ever friendly and energizing Struthless.

The goal is to create a piece of work every week following some simple guidelines (the topic of each week starts with a different letter of the alphabet) and constraints (in output, style and theme, to be set up by you before you start).

I mean, the real goal is to get stuff out there; to do the work and then post it online. Simple. But also not that simple, because if it was I don’t think the video introducing the challenge would have 43k views in one day. (Also: the Discord is packed, it’s as crowded as a summer festival.)

While I applaud the initiative – why else would I join – it did also give me pause.

Why don’t I post my work online? I used to. DeviantArt first, then Tumblr, Twitter, Instagram. I had a website for my drawings. In fact the very first website I ever made was a portfolio I created with some shabby HTML and CSS. I was really proud of that.

And then, at some point I just stopped. Some of that is because I have IssuesTM (who doesn’t?) but the rest of it comes down to this; what the fuck happened to the internet?

Here are some external reasons that have definitely played a part in not wanting to post my work online;

  • online outrage against small creators for whatever reason
  • algorithms that dictate the spread of your work
  • the need for self-censorship due to platform guidelines being in favor of advertisers not artists
  • popularity being used as the measure of not just success but also of artistic worth

And last but not least

  • the push to monetize everything you love doing while simultaneously being told you cannot expect to be paid fairly for “having fun”


The world is a mess isn’t it?

I’m going to do this challenge to get out of my head and set aside all of these issues. Though I would like to see them addressed in some way. I’m curious to see if that happens.

For now, I have worksheets to fill in.


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