When you’re trying to master a new skill, it pays to practice what you learn. Researchers believe that most people benefit from actively, rather than passively absorbing new information; they found that on average, individuals retain only fifty percent of what they see and hear, but ninety percent of what they do, even when accounting for student learning styles.

That figure might sound surprising to some, but successful artists, writers, and other creatives have been espousing the benefits of learning-by-doing for years. Pablo Picasso once famously said, “Inspiration does exist, but it must find you working,” and celebrated author Ray Bradbury has been quoted as saying “you’ve heard it a thousand times before. But it’s true – hard work pays off. If you want to be good, you have to practice, practice, practice.” That’s why Skillshare works so hard to encourage students to create projects as a part of their class experience. Not only is it a great way to showcase abilities and get feedback from teachers and peers, it’s also an important part of settling into a new skill and making it a permanent part of a creative routine.

Last month, in an extra effort to support students’ hard work, Skillshare ran a special contest to reward ten students who uploaded a project in March with free Annual Memberships. The winners were chosen at random, but we were so impressed with all of the participants’ great work that we decided to round up and show off some of our favorites. Below, find ten March Skillshare student projects that will inspire you to learn (and practice!) a new skill set, too.

10. YEAH! By Emi M.

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Emi created this positive  isometric illustration for DKNG Skillshare Originals class, 3D Illustration: Creating Isometric Designs in Adobe Illustrator

9. Funny, Sleeping Cat by Anne T.

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Anne created this quirky (yet true-to-life!)  surface pattern design for Top Teacher Peggy Dean’s Create a Repeat Pattern on the iPad Using Only Procreate

8. Botanical Illustrations 3 Ways: Project 1 by Jaime G.

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Jaime created this delicate image, one of three, for Top Teacher Liz Kohler Brown’s Botanical Illustrations on Your iPad in Procreate + 15 Free Procreate Brushes.

7. Rose Gold by Teresa D.

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Teresa created this stunning marble pattern with Procreate after taking Top Teacher Rich Armstrong’s Digital Marbling: Create Stunning Abstract Art in Procreate.

6. Enchanting Tulips by Aliz H.

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Aliz created this perfect-for-spring pattern design for Top Teacher Elizabeth Olwen’s Introduction to Designing Repeat Patterns in Illustrator.

5. Female Face by Lilith W.

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Lilith drew this beautiful image for Top Teacher Gabrielle Brickey’s Design a Female Character: Sketching Portraits with Pencils.

4. Odd Bodies by Mieke V.

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Mieke created this sweet piece for Top Teacher Tom Froese’s ODD BODIES: Illustrating Expressive, Stylized People.

3. The Lord of the Flies by Lucas A.

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Lucas created this stylized image for Top Teacher Keren Duchan’s Doodle Art: Basics and Beyond

2. Monstera Leaf by Nur

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Nur painted this detailed leaf for Esther Peck’s class, Watercolour Monstera Leaves.

1. Odd Bodies Diving by Michelle H.

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Michelle H. illustrated our pick for Skillshare Team Favorite, Odd Bodies Diving, for Top Teacher Tom Froese’s ODD BODIES: Illustrating Expressive, Stylized People.

Thanks to all who participated in our contest by uploading their work in March. Just remember, they don’t call it “creative practice” for nothing, so keep at those student projects, and you’ll be leveling up your work in no time!

Want to browse more Skillshare student projects? Check out this page to find great visual inspiration in every medium.

Written by:

Rachel Gorman