Adventures in Red and Blue

[All photo credit goes to my partner this time around! It was much more frustrating than I expected to take photos of my tiny travel sketchbook. She really made this post possible, I was ready to give up! Thanks, love!]

This is just a small sample of the doodles I’ve made with my red/blue color palette. I would show more, but I need to figure out how to get decent photos!

These red and blue Sakura Pigma Micron PN pens were some of the last supplies I bought before I decided to do an Art Supply No Buy, I bought them right before Birdie was born because I was anxious and I thought it would cheer me up. I didn’t start really using them until this year though!

I had read about limiting one’s color palette and how useful it can be, and I’m really glad I tried it out for myself. The rumors are true, it’s fantastic! I struggle a lot with decision fatigue and this solves that problem. I don’t like working in just black and white all the time, so this gives me that color I crave while still not overwhelming my brain!

Deciding what elements of the drawing to make which color is exciting for me. Since most of the things I draw are not actually blue and red in real life it’s so interesting to see how different it looks when I cut down the colors to just two. I love how I can add emphasis and contrast using this method.

When it comes to doing art on the go I think a very limited palette is the best choice for me and I will continue with this method in the future. I would like to try experimenting with cyan, yellow, and magenta next time! Those are my 3 favorite colors, and they’re a famous trio!

That’s all for now, see you in the next one!


I have extreme anxiety, including social anxiety. I second guess and ruminate over nearly every interaction I ever have with another human being. Every social mistake I make triggers self-loathing thoughts. I struggle with this every day, and I have for well over half my almost-26-years of life.

This one is a self portrait. The last time I drew myself I looked a lot different, I shaved my head a few months after Birdie was born. I’m autistic and I desperately needed one less sensory input. This isn’t the first time I’ve done a buzz cut, and it likely won’t be the last, but it’s the first time in a few years. I’m not fussed about it, I can grow it back whenever I want, I’ve done it before!

I’m not good at drawing people, but I don’t have to be. I think this piece effectively communicates what I was trying to convey, and art is all about communication.

I believe that venting is one of the most important uses for art. When words alone fail us, the visual arts can come in to pick up the slack.

That’s all for now, but I have a more positive post with the same color scheme underway! See you next time.


My mom works with kids so she collects a lot of coloring pages, so I decided to turn this one into a coloring page before coloring it myself.
The finished watercolor piece that is now hanging in my mom’s bedroom 🙂

This piece is from October 2019. I made it for my mom in celebration of her 22 years of sobriety on November 19th 2019 🙂 She loves burgundy and silver so I knew I had to incorporate those somehow. I used primarily watercolor but the silver was done with gel pen.

24 Steps

two black white and gold mandalas
two framed mandalas side by side.
My first works to ever be hung in a public establishment!

I owe my life to the 12 step programs. These mandalas were gifted to the recovery club where I began my journey to a new way of life without the use of recreational drugs.

My art cannot be divorced from my journey through addiction and recovery, which is one of the reasons I maintain anonymity by using the name Ari October.

I understand that AA and NA are not for everyone, but if you struggle with addiction yourself I hope you find something that does work for you and that you may lead a life free from compulsive addictive behavior!