Or What I Know About Drawing So Far
Also How I Learned/Am Learning To Draw
Could also be How I Learn to Learn
The thing is, I’m not that good yet. So you shouldn’t trust me that much. I fail a lot and screw up a lot of drawings. But I do know that I’ve been able to jumpstart my drawing skills with a few techniques and a lot of discipline, after years of thinking that drawing well (a) is reserved for a special group of people and (b) is just frustrating and hard. What follows is my approach/philosophy. Might work for you, but also might not. You might be able to adapt something from here however you will. This is also a reminder for myself. I’ve been getting distracted by needless worries recently and I need to recalibrate. So here it goes:
1. Know what you want. You have to have an idea of what you want. What you want to improve, what you want to get better at: hands, feet, animals, faces, landscapes, things, spherical objects, hair, etc. Right now, I want to be able to learn to draw fast and concise for animating. My goal is to capture the energy of whatever I am drawing. The goal isn’t really to draw beautiful drawings, but anyway it always follows that the more the essence of something is captured, then it’ll be beautiful in its own way. So there, energy and life and movement with as few lines as possible.
2. Energy -> Form - once I’ve captured that energy, I ‘contain’ it. I clarify further where that energy is at a given space and time. I give it structure: is it made of spheres or cylinders or blocks or a combination of these. How is it facing to or away from me? Where is it going? Once this is done, things such as the values and colors can follow. But the succession of Energy -> Form is what I use to create the foundation.
3. Always bring something to draw on with you. Keep on drawing. Draw with a pen, or anything permanent, not a pencil with eraser. You will make mistakes. I will make mistakes. Lots of it. Don’t discount it, don’t draw over it, don’t slash away at it. Just move on to the next page and try again. Start your day drawing, end your day drawing. Allot a whole block of time of your day to just shut up and draw. See: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UosZ4mXL8EI
4. Use references. Collect a lot of pictures, take pictures. Adapt the references and use them not as something to trace or completely imitate, but as jumping off points for exploration. Do this too with every advice you receive. Motto of the round table: Adopt, adapt and improve.
5. Do not let other people say no for you. They can criticize, yes, and you must glean from them whatever you can use to improve and move forward, but never let others blow your fire away. Take care of your fire, of your drive, as the Little Prince tended to his rose. Your chosen craft might not love you back easily, but you love it and the time that you tame it might just come soon enough.
5. Archive your drawings and keep them. Be self-aware and check out your older drawings once in a while to see if you’re making progress or being stagnant.
6. It never ends. Be a perpetual student because the learning never ends. The practice phase and the creation phase are one and the same. Only difference is what you keep to yourself and what you share with the world.
7. You want this? Prove it to yourself.