I don't need to draw (Misleading Title)

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    I don't need to draw (Misleading Title)

    So let me elaborate on the title, what I'm trying to achieve here is actually stories of other people, opinions, ideas, insights, whatever.

    The case is, I hate the fact that I sometimes NEED to draw, sometimes when I read posts about people complaining that they're not improving on whatever aspect of drawing, than most of the comments people give is: "You need to draw more!" I understand why people say this, but I personally hate the fact that I NEED to draw to become better, I don't need to do a damn thing, I want to draw because I want to enjoy drawing.

    I guess the best example that I can give is a school related one. At art-school they want you to draw for your assignments, the thing is that you need to complete them to actually become better, and to some this is a great way of improving their skillset, to me sadly, it isn't.

    I personally get quite depressed and irritated when I have the feeling that I drastically need to draw in order to become better, the feeling that I want to have isn't that I need to, but that I want to because I'll enjoy the progress of doing so. (I hope that I'm explaining it correctly as to what I mean to say.) I don't even see any progress in my drawings when I'm stressed about it, but when I'm relaxed and just taking my time to draw something, and this goes on for a little while, then I notice a huge improvement in my drawings.

    Anyway, share me your thoughts CA!

    Telling me that I draw well boosts my ego, but telling me that my drawings suck makes me want to proof to you that I can do better.
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    When you decide to really enjoy something for the sake of it, you stop thinking of "obligations" or "I have to's". That's happened to me as well. When I'm told I need to go back to basics, at first I'm like "what? omg this is tiresome" but as soon as I just start enjoying drawing cubes, spheres and I try to understand why it is so crucial to master them, I actually enjoy studying. If you see it as a "step you have to overcome" you will not enjoy it. Try to see the practice as a wonderful whole in itself and understand its underlying importance. Drawing cubes is boring? C'mon, now I know how to build castles, and that is freaking amazing. So I love studying cubes.

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    I'm confused and more than a little bit frightened.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Star Eater View Post
    I'm confused and more than a little bit frightened.
    Best response ever. That made me laugh lol (English is not my native language so it was hard for me to get the idea Redystra is trying to explain)

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    Quote Originally Posted by Star Eater View Post
    I'm confused and more than a little bit frightened.
    Wait, what? That wasn't a reaction I expected to read.

    @DaveGarcia
    Hahaha, your reply actually gave me a good laugh (in a positive way) Yeah, I understand where you're getting at, and I actually agree with you. I really strive to enjoy drawing, there are just too many moments for me where I feel that I need to draw or else I might disappoint myself. Sadly, this results in me getting annoyed over myself.
    (It's not my native tongue either, that's why I'm having trouble explaining it properly. Welcome to the language barrier)

    Telling me that I draw well boosts my ego, but telling me that my drawings suck makes me want to proof to you that I can do better.
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    You want to have fun all the way don't you?

    You know, to get good at something, you do it several times. You can't become the master of pies simply by reading about them. You have to make them in order to learn what you are doing wrong (and what your problem is), so that you can adjust and improve on your problem areas.

    How does this go with art and only having fun doing so, but still improving?
    Just draw, post your work and listen to what people are saying.
    Although I would recommend you draw to improve as well.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Lady Medusa View Post
    You want to have fun all the way don't you?

    You know, to get good at something, you do it several times. You can't become the master of pies simply by reading about them. You have to make them in order to learn what you are doing wrong (and what your problem is), so that you can adjust and improve on your problem areas.
    Thanks for the reply, based on it I can say that I've failed in explaining myself properly. It's not that I want to have fun all the time per sé (although that would be great if that could be the case) it's just that I want to enjoy myself while I'm drawing. For me, having fun and enjoying myself are two complete different things, somewhat related, but still different. It's also not that I don't know what I'm doing wrong, if there's one thing that I certainly am good at than it's self reflecting on my own work.

    Telling me that I draw well boosts my ego, but telling me that my drawings suck makes me want to proof to you that I can do better.
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    I've said this before in similar discussions. Like anything else the learning stages can be tedious and painful. My first day skiing wasn't fun at all, getting in shape (in the beginning) is torture. With all of these things at some point there comes a tipping of the scales. You spend more time on your feet than on your ass skiing and it starts to get fun, you can run a couple of miles without puking and barriers break where somedays you feel like you could never stop.

    Getting good will always include the bad a good there is just more bad in the beginning 10 years of art than good. Disclaimer: that number will be different for everyone.

    My best advice is not to seek a certain kind of feeling when you draw but to find a rhythm and eventually you'll discover ways to make the journey a pleasure.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Redystra View Post
    I guess the best example that I can give is a school related one. At art-school they want you to draw for your assignments, the thing is that you need to complete them to actually become better, and to some this is a great way of improving their skillset, to me sadly, it isn't.
    What is it that you are trying to achieve, how are you trying to get there and where are you now? It is a bit of a cliche that you must drawdrawdraw, but some approaches will not work for everyone...

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    I dunno what is with some of these posts. Drawing is your personal journey. Do it or not but don't sit there and give me the "am I fat in this dress spiel".

    Stop whining, work on it if you want to draw, or don't.

    I know that it comes off cold but most of the site really doesn't have *that* much investment in your decision. They'll help if you need it to a certain point, or they'll just move on to the next topic.

    There are already many others that decided what art was worth to them. You need to learn to make that decision.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Arshes Nei View Post
    I dunno what is with some of these posts. Drawing is your personal journey. Do it or not but don't sit there and give me the "am I fat in this dress spiel".

    Stop whining, work on it if you want to draw, or don't.

    I know that it comes off cold but most of the site really doesn't have *that* much investment in your decision. They'll help if you need it to a certain point, or they'll just move on to the next topic.

    There are already many others that decided what art was worth to them. You need to learn to make that decision.
    It's like a trend lately with new members/artists.

    Guys, don't make your life harder than it has to be.

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    Yeah, you don't HAVE to do anything. How much work you put in and how far you get is entirely up to you.

    Although if you don't like working under stress, I have to question your decision to go into game art.

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    You need to want to draw.


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    Quote Originally Posted by Elwell View Post
    You need to want to draw.
    Exactly. It's sad that I can tell who among my peers will most likely not make it. It's very easy to tell too. They look at doing their work like it's doing schoolwork. I hate school work assignments just as much as the next guy. But if you feel the same way about drawing or painting then it might be time to pick a new career path.

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    Well holy horse dung on a stick made of seashells. This topic went exactly the way I didn't want it to turn towards. I guess I really need to start working on the way I try to explain things before I ever make another thread.

    This whole post was never ment about complaining or whining, nor did I ever mean that I can't get myself to draw or don't see any progress. I actually draw everyday and I see improvement, what I was trying to explain is that there are just moments as to when drawing doesn't feel as enjoyable as it sometimes does. That I get a certain feeling that feels as if I'm stressing myself so badly in wanting to improve that I forget that the biggest role in art is to just enjoy creating it and as Arshes Nei calls it "Drawing is your personal journey."

    The only thing that I was hoping to get as replies, were comments of people that have had this feeling before (which I assume many had or still have) and how they cope with it in order to just ease their mind out and stop forcing themselves upon it. Re-reading everything I wrote above does make me wonder where the bloody fuck my mind wondered off to.

    I hope it's a bit more clear now and if it still isn't, then just delete/close this damned thread.

    @Elwell I agree, but wanting things too much can turn on you. (For me atleast)
    @UmpaArt Thank you (Not sarcastic by the way)

    Telling me that I draw well boosts my ego, but telling me that my drawings suck makes me want to proof to you that I can do better.
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    I would say you're not pushing yourself anywhere near the level you need to. Those frustrating times when it's not working, when you'd rather be doing something else, when you just don't feel it are the times when you are outside your comfort zone. We usually find ourselves there when we're not exactly sure what we're doing. When we're challenged. This is when you learn. It's how you get better.

    While I think drawing has a meditative property to it you can't and shouldn't always want to feel the happy feeling of your drawing power flowing out of your fingertips like water. At times it should be hard, frustrating and boring.

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    Quote Originally Posted by bfowler View Post
    I would say you're not pushing yourself anywhere near the level you need to. Those frustrating times when it's not working, when you'd rather be doing something else, when you just don't feel it are the times when you are outside your comfort zone. We usually find ourselves there when we're not exactly sure what we're doing. When we're challenged. This is when you learn. It's how you get better.

    While I think drawing has a meditative property to it you can't and shouldn't always want to feel the happy feeling of your drawing power flowing out of your fingertips like water. At times it should be hard, frustrating and boring.
    I agree with all of that except for the frustrating part. It should be challenging. Frustration will surely come but it doesn't have to. That's an emotional response that you can control by taking a nice deep breath.

    When I get frustrated while drawing, I draw poorly. This happened to my yesterday so I took a deep breath and stepped away for about 10 minutes and came back.

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    Again...art ain't easy folks, and I don't mean technically...I mean mentally. Art is like having a lover who will call you names....twitter how crappy you are...laugh when you undress...and use her teeth in inappropriate places. Sometimes. But other times it's like dating Cindy Crawford...who also lets you date Adrianna Lima...who likes sex in public.

    B. Carman has the best advice I've seen about the journey and overcoming the tedium. I'm paraphrasing here but he essentially talks about thresholds...you work hard...it kinda sucks to be on the outside approaching the threshold...but once through, things open up again and a new set of challenges lies before you. Some people call them plateaus as well...same thing.

    And UmpaArt - that's very, very true about peers...and students. Though I've found it is easier to tell who does have what it takes rather than who doesn't...because you can be surprised sometimes.

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    Redystra

    There are plenty of inspiration threads, books to read and so forth. Each person's journey is different. There's a certain point where you can only lead the horse to water. If that horse refuses to drink...well there's not much more that can be done.

    If an NBA player refuses to do the exercises to improve his/her game then maybe NBA isn't for them, they can play for fun or go into a minor/other league.

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    Actually, if you really like to draw normally, but there's a moment where you feel really frustrated, then most likely you are the cause of your frustration rather than art itself.
    In those cases, try to relax yourself. Do meditation techniques or go out for a walk a bit, or go watch a movie or whatever. When you're relaxed and go back to the drawing suddenly everything makes sense again.

    This is because when you are frustrated you aren't capable of focussing and using all your drawing knowledge optimally, which in return means you will get only angrier with yourself. If you ever have been depressed or burned out, you will find that your mental state absolutely ruins your focus as well, leading to shitty art.

    For most people when they're serious about art this concept comes quite naturally and most people who are serious about art will always enjoy making art regardless of the subject. Hence why people aren't too impressed by the notion you put forth.

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    Said it before and I'll say it again...
    You do *need* to draw....if you want to get better.

    I'm not saying what you specifically need to draw (perspective, studies, anatomy, etc). But whatever it is you draw, you do IN FACT need to draw.

    You can't just sit there and hope that one day your brain will click and you magically become awesome. You learn by repetition.

    That said, I do think a lot of artists put too much pressure on themselves to do all the hardcore studies at maybe the wrong time - ie when they are at their peak of frustration. There is a time and place for all of that.

    But as I always say, you won't get better if you quit. So draw PRECISELY what makes you happy if it means going another day with plenty of drawing. There is no bad habits. Nothing that can't be corrected later on.

    Most people agree that it's better to draw something shitty than nothing at all. So draw something shitty even if no one likes it, but you do. I draw SO MUCH dumb shit that I never put online, but it's mine and I like it. It keeps me drawing tomorrow because I love it more than anything.

    So do that, then you'll understand what everyone means when they say "YOU NEED TO DRAW".

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    Anything worth achieving only comes by hard work, and that may not always be enjoyable. You can't be a musician without learning scales and practising them until your fingers nearly drop off; why should art be any different?

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    Just to reflect on Dusty's post...for me I just love drawing. I could care less what it is...a dragon toy from imagination...a robot...a cardboard box...my wife...don't care. So to me everything is a study...and every study is fun.

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  34. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by JeffX99 View Post
    Just to reflect on Dusty's post...for me I just love drawing. I could care less what it is...a dragon toy from imagination...a robot...a cardboard box...my wife...don't care. So to me everything is a study...and every study is fun.
    Mine is more engrained into who I am.

    During my developmental days, it was a deep desire, that eventually became like one breathes or blinks ones eyes.

    Like or dislike could never come into it, because it be like not breathing (and not in some poetic-type shtick).

    "Everything must serve the idea. The means used to convey the idea should be the simplest and clear. Just what is required. No extra images. To me this is a universal principle of art. Saying as much as possible with a minimum of means."
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    Quote Originally Posted by Redystra View Post
    I personally get quite depressed and irritated when I have the feeling that I drastically need to draw in order to become better, the feeling that I want to have isn't that I need to, but that I want to because I'll enjoy the progress of doing so.(...) I don't even see any progress in my drawings when I'm stressed about it, but when I'm relaxed and just taking my time to draw something, and this goes on for a little while, then I notice a huge improvement in my drawings.
    Maybe if you can put into words what are you thinking in those times when you manage to relax and draw it would help.

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    I feel like the suggestion I'm about to make is kind of...er...different, but maybe it would help you if you tried out meditation. Seriously, hear me out! It kind of seems like a solution that has nothing to do with the problem, but it's a really good method for dealing with unwanted or pointless stress, at least for a lot of people. Trying it out may help you calm down and clear away some of the thoughts you've been having.

    http://health.howstuffworks.com/well...meditation.htm

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    Quote Originally Posted by snacks ex machina View Post
    I feel like the suggestion I'm about to make is kind of...er...different]
    Totally. I have to calm myself down before I draw or paint. I don't meditate, but I have to listen to ASMR videos on Youtube or livestreams of people I can relate to the most, like Team Awesome or Bobby Chui.

    Last edited by donm; June 21st, 2012 at 09:39 PM.
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    Quote Originally Posted by snacks ex machina View Post
    I feel like the suggestion I'm about to make is kind of...er...different, but maybe it would help you if you tried out meditation. Seriously, hear me out! It kind of seems like a solution that has nothing to do with the problem, but it's a really good method for dealing with unwanted or pointless stress, at least for a lot of people. Trying it out may help you calm down and clear away some of the thoughts you've been having.

    http://health.howstuffworks.com/well...meditation.htm
    I only skimmed most of the thread so far, but I also want to enthusiastically +1 this post! Meditation teaches you calm yourself and enjoy being in the moment, and this really improves your general happiness levels. With practice you'll find you can chill out and enjoy things which you previously found tedious, like doing the washing up, ironing and yes, doing drawing drills. When you have some studies to do, do some deep breathing and meditate to calm down and release any stress or emotional/psychological about the practice. It only takes a few minutes. Then put on some music you enjoy (I'd recommend something relaxing, just so it doesn't carry you back to where you were) and just hang out with the pencil marks.

    Also, if you are really finding drawing depressing or stressful, do something else for a while. I completely understand where you are coming from - years ago I got into a big funk about drawing because I was trying to please teachers/other people and worried so much about making mistakes and having to do things I didn't enjoy to improve, and it got so bad that I began to find drawing stressful and hated it. Please don't listen to people who say "just get on with it" because forcing yourself to do something you dislike will only make you dislike it more - what you need to do is tackle the issues which are causing you to feel this way in the first place, whatever is stopping you from just relaxing and drawing (read "Art & Fear" or "The Artist's Way", they are both amazing). I'll offer you some additional advice based on something I did quite accidentally: when I went to college I studied 3D modelling, which was related to drawing but didn't carry all the issues I had attached to it. I did this for a few years and then realised I wasn't finding it fulfilling and wanted to draw again. I was surprised to return to drawing and find that, after a little warming up to get back into practice, I was far, FAR better at it than I had been before. I'd taken a break of several years so this didn't make sense to me at first - if you don't practice a skill you lose it, right? Then I worked out that working with 3D modelling for so long had given me strong 3D visualisation skills and the ability to mentally examine things from different angles and understand how to represent 3D objects on a 2D plane like I never had before. The break had enabled me to work on my confidence issues and the improvement gave me further confidence, so it was a much easier ride from there. So if you're bored or depressed, try something else! Try some sculpting (traditional or digital), some painting with a medium you haven't used before, make something with your hands, anything that will help you loosen up and learn to look at things in a way you haven't before, and just enjoy the learning process without any pressure or attachment to the outcome.

    Hope this helps!

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    I think art should be something that you want to do and enjoy doing, we will all be challenged to do things that are outside our comfort zone at some point. I like to be challenged even if it takes me a long time to succeed, it is worth the effort.
    Sometimes I've noticed posts where people seem to be over analysing their art and making it a chore, I think it's defeatist and adds pressure if your struggling with something.

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    Hmm. I can't say that I really relate to the "drawing is a chore" feeling... There can be tedious or difficult stretches in any piece or project, of course, but those are worth struggling through to get to the more fun bits, and everything tends to be worth it when it finally comes together and you see you've just made something cool.

    However, some paying work can seem like a chore if I'd really rather be working on something else, or if I'm obliged to follow through on client decisions that I think are stupid. I motivate myself to get through those by being stubborn about doing as good a job as I can regardless of the circumstances - I have a reputation for doing good work, damned if I'll slack off just because I don't like the job. So sheer pride in my work is a pretty good motivator.

    And if nothing else motivates me to finish, at the very least I keep reminding myself that I'll be paid if I finish my work. Sometimes I'll literally be telling myself "if I finish this, I can buy groceries for a week... If I finish that, I can upgrade my software..." Etc. Getting paid is a great motivator.

    For school assignments, I've always found that the best way to tackle those was to find creative ways to make them interesting. (Heck, thinking up ways to jazz up a "boring" assignment can be a fun exercise in itself.) Say you have an assignment to draw a bunch of boxes... If you approach it in a disgruntled way as a chore and just throw some boring old boxes in a boring old pile and slog through a drawing wishing you were drawing something else, then of course you'll have no motivation. But suppose you come up with something cool or silly like, say, building a robot out of the boxes or hanging them from the ceiling; or you spend time trying to arrange boxes into a funky composition before you draw them; or you deliberately arrange your setup to be as difficult and challenging as possible... Then the assignment becomes much more fun. You may even get better grades.

    If you don't have to draw for work and you don't have to draw for school assignments... Then draw what you DO feel like drawing. Nothing's stopping you. And like Rusty says, any drawing is better than no drawing.

    Although if you want to do this for a living, you WILL have to draw things you don't feel like drawing sometimes... For those times, see above.

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