Where should I start?
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Thread: Where should I start?

  1. #1
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    Where should I start?

    I've been into drawing for a long while now but up 'till the end of last year, I spent more time looking at tutorials, other peoples art and thinking of what I wanted to be able to draw in the future and since then, I've tried to do my best with drawing but I only see little improvement and to be honest, I think it's because I don't know what to focus on studying and in what order. Some people say with seeing forms or with shading but how can I get better at that? I'm not a very smart person and understanding books can be very hard for me. Sometimes, even after reading a paragraph/sentence several times, I don't get anything and I feel like I'm just going to be stuck in one place forever until I make a detailed plan of what to do. Also, just in case, I can't even copy/observe things very well. Almost all the time, I end up stuck with symbols of what I see or whatever it is.

    Please help? I am kinda down because I know I'm going to have to get a job soon and I don't want to have only an hour of spare time to draw a day. I wanted to make a sketchbook and get help that way but studying with a tablet is impossible and I don't have a scanner of my own to use and I'm aiming pretty high so I really want to get good. It's not just a hobby for me anymore.

    Sorry if I sound like a stupid whiny kid. I kinda am though. Haha.

    Any help I can get is appreciated!

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    If you cannot learn from books, find a tutor. You don't need Photoshop or tablet; learn to draw in pencil first.

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    Its kinda hard to tell you what to do first because in reality you need to be learning all the fundamentals at the same time so you can see how one effects the others. It also depends on what you really want to draw, do you want to draw mostly characters? or mostly hard surfice stuff like enviroments, tanks and robots? For characters I think learning proportions would be the first step, for eviroments perspective is the big thing to work on.

    But keep in mind all of the foundations of art can be learned by drawing things from life.

    "The whole point of practice is to do it until you can do it right." - dpaint

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    Benedikt; Oh? Then I would say I want to draw. And once I get that down, I want to get good at it.

    arenhaus; To be honest, I really wanted a tutor or to go to an art institute but I don't have the money for that.

    element1988; I've been drawing from life as often as I can. Actually, most of the time I do draw, I draw from life. I draw a lot of the things I see around me. What I really want is to learn how to observe and put to paper what I'm seeing the way I'm seeing it and well...while I'm not interested in tanks and robots, I want to learn how to draw basically everything. For example, to be able to make a comic or something similar, I would need to draw characters and environments and those are basically what I want to draw. But I just want to know, for example, what type of exercises I must do to be able to draw what I'm looking at. I tried learning perspective but it just got me very frustrated and confused which is actually what brought me here...

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    Arshes Nei is offline Registered User Level 17 Gladiator: Spartacus' Dimachaeri
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    Do you have a sketchbook on the site? If not start one and see what advice you can get.

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    Arshes Nei; I made one when I started this account but I never posted in it because I don't have a scanner to scan my drawings. Now that I think about it, using a camera should be okay, right?

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    Anything that can get something posted. Just make sure it's as clear as you can get it.

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    This is what I am talking about. I mean seriously your asking if a camera is ok? Bloody hell this site has gone to pot. My god even the cheapest cameras have cameras that can take decent images of your work. Really i mean really, first people start saying they cant do anything because they don't have a tablet, then a scanner, then how do i read a book, what book do i read, how do i open a book, is my schedule ok.

    For the love of god you haven't realised a camera is ok? Now I know why that thread in the lounge about CA is getting bigger. This whole site has become one big wasteland. I mean wtf isnt it common sense if you dont have a scanner you use a camera? This isnt 1999 where nobody had on phones. Jesus alll mighty.

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    Quote Originally Posted by albedo View Post
    Benedikt; Oh? Then I would say I want to draw. And once I get that down, I want to get good at it.
    Then you're on the right track. I was refering to the difference between loving the process and merely wanting to be succesfull at something. Of course it's not wrong to want to become good at something at all, it's just that you need the love for the process to get there in the end.

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    Everyone learns in different ways and at different paces - no 'right' or 'wrong' ways, but some are more efficient/inefficient, for whatever defined purpose.

    If you're beginning, I'd advise, in the context of your situation, have a small a4 or a5 sketchbook (or in-between), at all times, and just draw whenever you have time to spare during downtime. Just practice, practice, practice, and pure attrition through refinement and mistakes.

    And like others have said, time and time again in advice to others - don't rush to it and buy a tablet. Start with the basics and foundations, and work your way up. The basics being a simple sketchbook, and drawing tool - If you're feeling adventurous, use a pen and not pencil. This will force you to be conservative with line. You will make mistakes, and that's natural and nothing to be ashamed about . It's your sketchbook, you will never have to show it to anyone unless you want to. It's a good catalogue of progress that you can use to view your progress objectively. That's where the ca.org sketchbook will come in handy (Mine, case in point).

    Only determiner of success is determination, no other way about it, and never giving up, and just refining. It'll be hard, but nothing good is ever easy, and likewise.

    "Never regret thy fall from grace, O' spirit of Icarian flight, for the greatest tragedy of them all to face, is to never feel the burning bright"
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    Maledict; That's what I plan on doing, thanks. And actually, I already have a tablet which I got as a gift. I've been digital coloring comic/black and white scans for around 3-4 years but once I decided to start drawing instead of coloring other peoples work, I stopped using it and then drawing a pencil became much easier than using a tablet. Which is why I said that I wouldn't draw digitally to post here.
    I'm not really afraid of making mistakes anymore. I was just feeling really frustrated because I felt like I was at a standstill and I just wanted to know if there was any exercises that I could do that could help get me moving again.

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    Ah, understood

    Well, I guess for one, what I did (Or was tutored in at the TSOFA Bottega), was draw stacks of cubes in 3D space with Drawthrough in mind. Which means being aware of how they will fit in 3D space. They will not "clip" into each other, they will prop up against each other in a pile. Not unlike a pile of cubes right in front of you.

    Other than that, simple line exercises. Draw straight lines over and over again. 'Best' method is to start with two dots, and use hand eye co-ordination to link the two dots. Straight lines, over and over and over, until it becomes natural.

    Then curvy lines, just to practice the craftsman ship itself.

    Then basic cube forms (From the straight lines), as I described. Then more complex shapes, et al (Basic theory is that all forms and shapes in the real world are composed of the several basic shapes: Cubes, cones, spheres, and cylinders), combined together.



    Then you'll move onto designing your own things: I think of it this way first - Think of the principles of design, the limitations of what is possible, then start with form itself first (Like skinless 3D renders in Maya or 3D Studio Max) - THEN overlay the skin/aesthetics. The rest is compositioning, colour, etc.

    And in the meantime, so that you don't get bored of all the rote foundation exercises, just go wild and draw what you love, with what you learned. Be it monsters, girls, creatures, architecture, cities .

    (For Instance, I was unhealthily obsessed with figure construction: This will undoubtedly help a lot: www.figuredrawing.info)

    "Never regret thy fall from grace, O' spirit of Icarian flight, for the greatest tragedy of them all to face, is to never feel the burning bright"
    Believe my lies, for I tell the truth about them. Or would you rather me lie about telling the truth?

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    Maledict; Thank you very much for taking the time to help. I'll definitely be trying things out in that order. I was doing an exercise that I found on youtube a while ago...called the riverbed exercise, I think? This is an example that I found on google. I was hoping doing that would help as well. It was pretty fun to do too.
    Haha, actually I love drawing still life a lot so I'll be doing lots of those and hoping that it'll do me some good.

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    I'm gonna have to agree with thanoss on this one.

    Isn't this exactly the kind of thread Arshes gave the go-ahead to close in that Lounge-thread?

    It's graphite. It's tree pulp squeezed and shaped into a fine sheet. It's not rocket science. It doesn't require a manual. Just fucking do it already. And post the results in a Sketchbook thread before you make another useless thread.

    EDIT: Apologies for losing my temper, it's just that the forum's been flooded with these lately. Maledict actually gave some very sound advice, although I fear we'll never actually see the results of his advice incorporated into the OP's work.

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    I know I'm different from a lot of opinions about the tablet.

    You can use the tablet the same time you're studying. You can do traditional and digital at the same time.

    Now the problem is that people rely solely on the tablet as the method of learning, keep finding ways of not studying from life and worse, not going outside.

    You will not die if you do studies with your tablet, in fact it may be the best way to understand its shortcomings when studying.

    Because people keep repeating why drawing from life is important, but newbies get it in their head that... the people lecturing them are stuffy old coots that sit by easels painting teacups, and random pottery for all their life. It's like telling the kid not to touch the stove because it's hot. Sometimes the kid needs to get burned by the stove to realize why.

    Last edited by Arshes Nei; January 23rd, 2013 at 03:25 PM.
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    iambanana; Well, probably not for a while because I don't always have time to come online here like this and I still would prefer to draw rather than to take pictures, copy them onto the pc and then spend some more time posting it here. If you want to request that this gets deleted then that's fine. Sorry for making a thread that got you and thanoss mad. I thought this was a site I could ask for whatever on. But I just want you guys to know that I'm not just sitting around all day and thinking about getting better without working towards it. I draw almost all day and I have to stop myself when my fingers start to pain. And I will take the advice I've gotten and incorporate it into my work and get results sooner or later.

    Arshes Nei; I'm aware, I do plan on using many different types of media once I get used to doing things with a pencil. Also, although a tablet is harder for me to control now that I haven't used it for a while, I think studying digitally should wait for a while so I can get used to not having layers doing all the work for me. Using a pencil on paper for shading is much harder and I want to get used to it that way.

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    Everyone is giving you sound advice and so listen to them all.

    Though one thing I've did notice is that no one has mentioned that your attitude toward drawing might also be having an impact on why you aren't progressing at the speed you wish, my advice on this matter would be to stop doubting yourself and to be more confident, you'll be surprised at how much you mood can effect how well you work. Pace yourself everyone learns at different speeds so take it easy on yourself just keep confident and it'll come with time.

    You said reading through books is just confusing you what books are you reading? If you were to list the ones you've read people would be more than welcome to give advice on what ones are good or bad and easier to understand.

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