The success of NaMoPaiMo has many inspired similar events. In the last three years, there have been time based challenges for several different aspects of the model horse hobby, including sculpting, medallion sculpting, customizing, vintage style customizing and tack making.
Although I am interested in all these things, I've mostly avoided the spin-off events. NaMoPaiMo is just so big and so overwhelming, I haven't felt like I have the time or energy to invest in another hobby challenge.
And that's probably how it would have stayed, if my friend, Bobbie had not visited me for a few days this past September. We stayed up late talking, and somehow that led to both of us signing up for this year's ICEE.ICEE (International Customizing Event) is a two month challenge that runs from September 1 through November 30. I finished my ICEE horse last week, and have spent some time reflecting on ICEE, NaMoPaiMo and other similar type events. Here are some of my thoughts.
These events also encourage people to finish projects. Like so many other hobby artists, I have an entire box of half finished models in my basement. When the going gets tough and the first burst of enthusiasm is gone, it's easy to abandon ship and move on to something else. The public commitment and accountability part of these challenges encourages people to dig in and work through the ugly stages.
Challenge months tend to be productive months, beyond just the designated challenge model. I usually paint several models during NaMoPaiMo. Granted, I don't always finish the bonus horses, but even so, it's more painting than I do during the other eleven months of the year combined. Similarly, I got a lot of customizing, repairing and prepping done during the ICEE time frame. Even my scruggly, waste mold Zephyrus resin got prepped. That's truly an ICEE miracle!
Finally, events like NaMoPaiMo and ICEE are fun. People like to complain about hobby cliques and mean girls, but bad behavior is noticeably absent during these challenges. Instead, there's a real sense of camaraderie. Everyone is in this together, and participants do a lot of sharing, supporting and cheerleading. It's the model horse hobby at it's best. I very much enjoyed this year's ICEE, and I hope everyone will paint with me during NaMoPaiMo 2020!