I don’t care that it’s Saturday. This is a special weekend post for those of you that read the blog portion of Second Lunch. It’s also a sneak peak of sorts.

Over the past few months I’ve been honing in on a more detailed illustration style that more closely resembles how I doodle things in my actual sketchbook. I wasn’t going to waste a post writing about it, because oh my god that would be boring.

BUT, I was going through some old files of when I started illustrating stuff last year and it’s surprising to see how my style has evolved over that time period when I’m basically just drawing glorified stick-figures.

Here’s a look at my updated illustration style.

What do you guys think?

I like it. To me it just feels right and more personable. It isn’t fully realized yet, so I’ll keep tinkering with it. But this is essentially the look I’m going for.

Don’t be worried though if you’re thinking I’m abandoning my current style. I’m just incorporating this new style into select posts going forward and I wanted those of you that read the blog to be the first to see and hear about it.

But the real reason I’m writing this post is to talk about growth. With me being more focused on the visuals as a blogger, it becomes a lot easier to see growth over time.

See?

I wasn’t aware of how much Second Lunch had evolved over the past year until I looked back at that earlier stuff. I think that’s pretty nifty. It’s also reassuring to know that I’m growing with my illustrating; hopefully for the better.

That’s why I blog. I want to take little stories or ideas and create things as a way to communicate with you, the reader. And I want to see that I’m always challenging myself and growing as a blogger. I don’t know where this all leads, I’ve never blogged this long before. But the desire to start something and finish it far out weighs all of the hours I put into my blog, so I keep going.

Now, what about you guys? How has your blog or you as a blogger evolved since when you started? What keeps you going?

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44 Responses to “The Difference a Year Makes”

  1. Samuel

    I still love your May 2012 illustration. Something about stick legs is funny.

    I still blog because I have too much on my mind and not enough people who understand. I blog so I can leave my thoughts out there and if someone stumbles upon it, great. Plus writing keeps my brain fresh.

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    • timmer

      I like that style too, and it’ll always be at the forefront of my blog.

      I imagine that’s why most of us start blogs. To get those thoughts out in a creative way and to better understand them.

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      • Samuel

        It’s a good outlet for me to write something that I normally wouldn’t share on Twitter or Facebook where most of my friends would judge me.

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    • timmer

      Thanks, Nicole! I’m a big fan of your work and I imagine your always looking at ways to develop new wrinkles into your style as well.

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  2. Jen and Tonic

    I love that you have the same look, but it’s just more refined. Blogging is cool in that you DO get to see a snapshot of what’s happened over time when you weren’t paying attention.

    The thing I notice most about my writing is how much more “me” it sounded than before. I finally found a distinct voice, and have been focusing more to give readers continuity. While I still love some of my older pieces, I’m more excited about the stuff I’m writing now.

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    • timmer

      Jen,
      That’s what I love about your blog. Your “me” is very present. I think it’s really hard to find that place as a writer, especially when tackling it from a humorous angle, but you’ve found it!

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  3. GiggsMcGill Jill

    I’m glad he stopped wearing the dress from 2011. So a year ago ;)

    I’m glad I kept my blog up. It turned from a way to inform family about what I was doing, to a fun writing activity that lets me read about others’ lives as well.

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    • timmer

      I pride myself on keeping up with fashion. You’re right, blue onesies are so last year. I like to think that blogs are like our own little ships traversing the blogosphere.

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  4. free penny press

    While I am no master writer by any stretch of the imagination, when I look back at some pieces I wrote (and were actually published places ) I cringe.. so immature..It’s great to see our progression and blogging certainly helps!!
    Love your growth!

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    • timmer

      I agree, Lynne! A few things I’ve blogged before Second Lunch seem so meek and voiceless when I think about them now.

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  5. Nicolle

    Love the new style. I almost feel like it’s that moment for Pinocchio when he’s like “I’m a real boy.” I definitely still love the May 2012 style. As for the May 2011, he looks kind of mean and vindictive.

    I think it’s great that you’ve kept up blogging and hope you will for a while. Yours is one of my favorite blogs and I look forward to your posts every week.

    Personally, I’ve been thinking a lot about my blog and where I would like it to go (although, sometimes I wonder if people enjoy what I decide to share and I have gotten distracted lately). I would like to get back to my original idea of a balanced offering of content from books, food, and booze…right now it’s kind of heavy on the food part. But, I have definitely grown as far as the types of ingredients that I use and I make an effort to use fresh ingredients, instead of processed foods. I’ve also put more effort into my photography, which is very important.

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    • timmer

      haha, I don’t know why nov ’11 looks so pissed and I still like the may ’12 style too. It’ll always be the bread and butter of Second Lunch. The new one is just a special one I’ll be using fromt time to time (they take a while to draw)

      I think that’s what I like most about blogging. It’s ours. We have complete control over them and for the most part, we can steer them in any direction we want.

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  6. Dounia

    It’s cool to see how things change and develop over time, and a blog is definitely a great way to keep track of that. I’ve seen a change in my writing since starting my blog last June – the writing style, how I write about certain topics, even the direction I wanted to take my blog in…It’s a great way to grow with something you love to do, and the supporting and motivating comments from readers are always a push in the right direction.

    I love the new illustrations, and looking forward to seeing more! :) Hope you’re having a great weekend!

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    • timmer

      Right? Besides documenting things and sharing, blogs are something we grow with. I think blogs really take off when you find your voice. And it certainly helps to have support from readers!

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  7. QueridaJ

    I think having first seen the may 2012 style that I’ve grown attached to it…love the big eyes…but your new style certainly leans towards a refined and realistic look…progress is a good thing and well change is the only constant. Great that you have been able to seen your growth…at times it’s hard to see things so familiar to us.

    I started my blog with pieces that I wrote years ago thinking that writing anything new was not going to happen cause I felt so out of touch with it…but to my surprise I felt a whole new motivation to write new pieces…and the best part is that I have met so many generous bloggers who take the time to like and comment… =)

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    • timmer

      AND I’LL NEVER STOP DOING THAT STYLE! It’s kind of the hallmark around here. The new style is something special I’ll do for certain posts.

      Agreed! The blogosphere has been very nice to me as well and is certainly a great motivator to go on.

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  8. Sloan

    I think my blog has evolved into less is more (most of the time.) I write when something is significant enough to really think on. Or something funny happens and I can connect it to the bigger picture of life. Much more interesting then writing about what I had for lunch.

    Oh, for lunch today I had little piggy fried dumplings I bought for 60 baht at a Thai coffee shop…bad decision–Go with just coffee next time. :-P

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    • timmer

      I like the ‘less is more’ idea as well. I could certainly post 2-3 times a week, but then the quality suffers. Sometimes that happens though, it’s just a matter of balance.

      oh, definitely coffee next time, Sloan. :P

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  9. ngnrdgrl

    I love the new style! There is something softer about him versus May 2012. The 2011 guy looks really mean! Haha!

    I just started blogging in late May of this year, so I will have to reflect more on where I have come from later. I hope to grow stronger as a writer, photographer and jewelry maker. I have a goal of eventually setting up an etsy shop to help pay for my hobby expenses. We’ll see how things go from here. :)

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    • timmer

      I know what you mean! I’ll be alternating between may ’12 and nov ’12. But it’s safe to say nov ’11 won’t be making any other appearances.

      It’s great that you have goals. I think they’re really important in blogging. I might write a post about it in the future.

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  10. kasturika

    I’ll second every opinion that has already been said above :D.

    When I started my blog, I had no idea what I was going to do with it… And I still don’t! So over the past year and a half, that part hasn’t changed. But I am amazed at what I have been able to post so far. I had no idea I could come up with some of the things I have written about… Although I cannot compare my posts as easily as you have, I can see a significant improvement :)

    Looking forward to some more shorts, and the new style trousers too :)

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    • timmer

      Whoa, a year and a half? That’s solid. It’s great that you can track improvement as well. I’m having a hard time doing it when I look at my own writing D:

      I’m hoping to get more shorts out soon as well! So tough with this whole 40hr work thingy.

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  11. vyvacious

    May 2012 all the way! For some reason, whenever I look at that illustration, I giggle. It already gives me that feel good feeling you want from any good blog.

    Perhaps I’ve gotten a little more confident in my writing. I would love to be more concise though, still not very good at that. I also don’t beat myself up if I can’t post as much as I’d like or if my post doesn’t follow a certain format. I just let my creative juices flow and do my best to capture it :)

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    • timmer

      I get what you mean by that ‘good feeling’ AND exactly that’s why May 2012 will always be the main illustration style on Second Lunch. The new style will be something I use on certain posts.

      Confidence is so important in writing (and anything else, really). And I think what you’re alluding to is ‘brevity’? I typically try and keep my work concise as well. But I always work from the point of view in believing what posts will vary in length depending on their nature. Some things are great in a paragraph, while others need 1000’s of words, it all depends.

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      • vyvacious

        Awesome. I do like to see your journey though as you progress your illustration style. I find it fascinating.

        Yes, haha. Brevity. Certainly not one of my strong points either.

        I agree as well! I love a good mix :)

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  12. Things You Realize After You Get Married

    I like the evolution of your illustrations. Funny! :) For me, it’s a similar story. My posts get better, perhaps more appealing, as I hone in what my readers really like and what direction I want my blog to go in. Of course, there is still the case that my very 1st post is popular–probably because its status as my 1st post always peaks peoples’ curiosity!

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    • timmer

      It’s pretty cool when you feel like your honing in and sharpening your style of posts. I think the closer you get to figuring your blog out is when it has a more “me” or personable feel to it.

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  13. cestlavie22

    First off I love the illustrations! I just came across your blog today and I look forward to seeing what more there is to come. As for evolution I just recently took a break from blogging and came back with serious focus and I think it made me stronger and more determined as a blogger!

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    • timmer

      Thanks :D

      I also came back from a hiatus recently. It did wonders for my blogging as well! I’m planning on doing a post about it so other bloggers can see the benefits as well.

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  14. becca3416

    Wow! That was a cool post. I often go back and read some of my first blog entries. My blog has evolved a LOT as well. I mostly stick to the funny stuff these days instead of trying to mix in the serious stuff. Give the people what they want I suppose :).

    Now, as for your updated style of illustration? My vote is a huge YES. I am excited to see it show up in your future creations!

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  15. petit4chocolatier

    I like that the illustrations still look somewhat the same; sort of. Fun blog : )

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