Art: Where to start learning to draw?
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  1. #1
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    Where to start learning to draw?

    I've taken a few drawing classes in the past, a high school level art, and a college beginning drawing, but I was never very good at drawing. This semester I signed up for a digital painting class at my school to learn to draw/paint with a wacom on a computer. I bought myself a intuos 2 and corel painter for home use so I can practice in at home in addition to what we do at school. We have been doing basics in class with drawing and painting, but I don't feel like my work is of the quality it should be. I'm not sure where my weakest point is, if it is inability to control drawing on a tablet, lack of ability to observe correctly, or just lack of ability to draw. Anyway, I want to start focusing more on learning to draw, and am here to ask for advice on where to start. That being said, here are a few rough projects I did in the last few days in class so you guys can see about where I am at.




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    draw draw draw draw and DRAW! just when your hand is swollen, bleeding, and throbbing.. draw more. it really is the only way to improve. keep drawing your hands. hell, whenever you cant think of anything to draw, just draw whatever is around you. hands, feet, plants, pots, people, as long as youre putting that pencil on the paper, and your eye on a subject, youre learning. keep sketchbooks! dont worry about filling it with pretty pictures, worry about act of drawing itself. teach yourself anatomy, google up some pictures and study study study. there are no secrets to drawing, youll just have to work for what you want. the "inability to control a pencil" is something that can easily be overcome by simply drawing. it is sometimes a habbit to make short, choppy lines in an attempt to be precise, try not to do this. work with long, fluid strokes, focus on the BIG shapes and filter out those little details, they can always be worked in afterwards.

    anyways, happy drawing! i hope my rambelings could be of assistance

    Sketch.Team.DUO
    syrogen
    jMarkus
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    Quote Originally Posted by Syrogen
    draw draw draw draw and DRAW! just when your hand is swollen, bleeding, and throbbing.. draw more. it really is the only way to improve. keep drawing your hands. hell, whenever you cant think of anything to draw, just draw whatever is around you. hands, feet, plants, pots, people, as long as youre putting that pencil on the paper, and your eye on a subject, youre learning. keep sketchbooks! dont worry about filling it with pretty pictures, worry about act of drawing itself. teach yourself anatomy, google up some pictures and study study study. there are no secrets to drawing, youll just have to work for what you want. the "inability to control a pencil" is something that can easily be overcome by simply drawing. it is sometimes a habbit to make short, choppy lines in an attempt to be precise, try not to do this. work with long, fluid strokes, focus on the BIG shapes and filter out those little details, they can always be worked in afterwards.

    anyways, happy drawing! i hope my rambelings could be of assistance
    I figured that would be the advice

    Should I draw on paper, or is it ok to draw with my wacom? I understand that paper can be done anywhere, but the fact is if I am anywhere that I am going to have time to draw, it will be at home where I can use my wacom anyway. Thanks for the quick response.

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    Looking at your two examples, seems to me you need to gain concepts of good drawing and shading practices. Shouldn't they teach these to you in your classes?

    Anyway, good instructions are abundant one the web. Here is a pretty clear one:

    http://elfwood.lysator.liu.se/farp/s...sketching.html

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  5. #5
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    Only tip I could give you is draw with traditional media first. Pencil, Pen, Charcoal etc. before jumping into digital. Just my 2 cents.

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    Quote Originally Posted by nafa
    Looking at your two examples, seems to me you need to gain concepts of good drawing and shading practices. Shouldn't they teach these to you in your classes?

    Anyway, good instructions are abundant one the web. Here is a pretty clear one:

    http://elfwood.lysator.liu.se/farp/s...sketching.html
    Well, the digital class assumes you've had some previous drawing experience, and is more about learning painter than about learning to draw. My beginning drawing class was taught by some loopey lady who didn't really teach us anything throughout the whole semester. Most people learned just by doing stuff on their own and from critiques from each other.

    Thanks for the link.

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    Don't just "keep drawing". You need to practice exersizes designed to make you better. Go find any book about drawing and do simple exersizes, like countour drawing, outling drawing, etc... i can see right off that you draw too fast and you don't pay attention to what you are drawing... slow down and do simple exersizes and once you can do accurate exersizes, move on to full rendered drawings.

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    Another thing is that you can't rush through exersizes.. yes they are boring, but learn to enjoy them. Don't stop doing them and move on untill you can see that you have improved your technique. It's like any other thing.. you can't sit down and push a few piano keys and expect to play like Bethoven. You need to practice simple things untill you sharper your skills enough to move on.


    If you want to become a better artist, you NEED to do that. Otherwise you'll not learn anything and put out sub-par work.

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    Quote Originally Posted by DragonGX
    Don't just "keep drawing". You need to practice exersizes designed to make you better. Go find any book about drawing and do simple exersizes, like countour drawing, outling drawing, etc... i can see right off that you draw too fast and you don't pay attention to what you are drawing... slow down and do simple exersizes and once you can do accurate exersizes, move on to full rendered drawings.
    Thanks for the advice. Do you know of any place online I can find such excercises, or do I need to go find a book?

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    Here are some places where you can get stuff to learn from. I'm kinda in the same position as you are.

    http://www.fineart.sk/index.php?cat=1 - Andrew Loomis' anatomy and sketching books


    a few indexes of tutorials

    http://www.epilogue.net/art/tech/

    http://www.sumaleth.com/links/la.php...torials&page=1

    http://div.dyndns.org/EK/tutorial/

    http://www.gfxartist.com/features/tutorials


    You'll find loads of stuff here on conceptart as well if you do a search for tutorials.

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    i'm tryin to get my sketches mores loose and free flowing any tips on how to get that? i'm already failry quick and loose but i see some of the sketches already posted and they look incredibly loose....any tips?

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    yeah i think that you should do alot of learning the 'traditional arts'. A good read is 'the artist complete guide to figure drawing' by anythony ryder. Although it is aimed at the figure drawing subject, it basically can be applied anywhere. They are only reads b/c you houldn't worship them since most of the books have different ways to go about everything and anything. Set up still lifes in your room or whereever so you can work and practice with a piece and not just line and shade lessons. as for the loose sketches the aim is capturing alot of information with a few lines...although sketching in it self is different from person to person...

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    You can really benefit from doing varied drawings. Studies are all important, just drawing is important, longer project are important. Fun is important!!

    Quick sketches of figures on the go are invaluable in my opinion.
    Up until recently I was having to tell myself to draw. The urge wasnt there all the time or didnt last very long and it just became pesistence. I think this was because i was saying to myself, right i'm learning to draw. So i'd spend all this time getting stuff out, saying to myself right, lets draw for 3 hours. And i would get frustrated at how little I did in three hours... not fun.


    But then I discovered drawing from life figures. Observing interesting poses, and cutting them down to the minimum most important lines. Then having to reason the rest out because nobody stays still. I need that panic induced on me.

    @ Cristian i think this will help you loosen up as well.

    It PUSHES your mind to really think, its exciting, its fast, you might get found out, you have to be stealthy. Oh god i've just gotta get another sketch.

    Take a small sketch book EVERYWHERE, draw in school books with a pen in between the gaps of writting and stuff. Try finding more and more daring places to draw.

    If you can find aim in these sketches It can be even better. Like i'm wanting to learn about figure, because i want to draw comic books charectors.
    My charector is going to where a suit in some scenes and a leather jacket, so when i see those i really think about what makes them look effective. So i'm not just drawing randomly. I'm thinking about the folds in the cloth. I'm reflecting over the drawings when making drawings at home. So I know what I need to observe next time, what I could do better etc.

    Learning to draw is much more than lines on a page, i'm sure you know. Reflecting, studying others drawings and observing are all critical, and can really make a noticeable difference. And you dont need to draw a thing to do them.

    I try to reflect over every drawing i do. What is good about it? is the best question to start with.

    I've blurted all that out and didnt cover everything and stuff but I hope some of it will be useful. And by all meens give me advice/ dispute stuff.

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    The most important thing to learning how to draw is to practice, study, observe, and persistence.

    Keep a sketchbook near you, draw from life CONSTANTLY, study master sketches, hell, study how a lot of the really great artists on this forum sketch and draw. Observe their line quality, hatching, shading, their process, etc. Loosening up comes when you really learn and know what your doing. Loosening isn't so much a result of being loose. Jason Manley and Kevin Llewelyn both stay loose on their drawings I noticed from watching them, but most importantly they are not loose without a purpose or knowledge of what they are doing, they can be loose EXACTLY because they know what they are doing and it shows in the final drawing.

    If I were you, I would try to find a very competent teacher or artist that could help you out. Just simply enrolling in a college program that uses Teacher Assistants's that are no better than the students doesn't help with skill development. I know, I've been there. Do some research in your area, find someone. If your REAL serious about doing art, I would even look into possibly enrolling in the various art schools that many here attend or an atelier of some sort.

    My advice, don't try reinventing the wheel. Spend some time studying how the masters sketched, read up on art history and their process, study how some of the better artists draw on this forum and ask them direct questions on how they go about in their process. I'm sure they will all be more than happy to help you out. Begin studying values, line quality, and technique. Keep an open mind to new styles and approaches and try them out. Most importantly have fun with it, art does become frustrating and drags at points, but you have to learn to work through those times. When your just beginning to learn can be the most frustrating but funnest times in art. New discoveries everyday. Good luck.

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    I could copy-paste what blackhawk said alredy. That´s the way.
    Draw as much as you can, look an try to learn how others work and what works for you. Look at the masters, look arround you and try to learn what you see. That´s the way.
    Observation, perseverance, and practice.
    Look, think, look again, think about what you saw, look and draw!
    Do this once and again, then again, and once more. Whenever you can find out how others did what you´re trying to do. Then try to do it your way until it´s perfect.
    You´ll learn. There´s no other way.

    Jaku
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    Unhappy

    thanks thats what i thought. i am deadly serious about caring on art cause it well....my life an i have a passion for creation if you get what i mean? i'm just finishing my last year in college and i'm planning on going for a foundation. but i've had this idea try and follow.....right my eldest brother went to the art college that i'm thinking of applying for and he said that it was we'll say a poo place to go to. he had no help or anything. an i guess i need a violent kick in the arse to get myself more on my own reliance. an basically i thought that if i went to a college a hard college then i might get the right kinda kick into place........dunno if you made any sense of that then let me know what you think
    cause at the mo i'm like what Rhaucan said i guess i'm forcing myself to do something and expecting too much from my self all at once an i dunno..........HELP

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    You have to take that iniative if this is something you really care to do. Art isn't one of those things that just falls in your lap and that's it. It takes years and years and years and years of hard work, more work than most people are willing to give us credit for. They think we can magically pull master paintings or drawings from our asses when they snap their fingers, no joke.

    It is entirely possible to learn on your own, in fact it's preferable if your someone that can motivate yourself and learn on your own, but if you really want to learn well, supplement that by getting into an environment like an art school or an atelier. On top of recieving great instruction, just being in the environment with other students immersed in the arts can be an inspirational and awe inspiring experience. PLus it's always great to meet fellow artists and make connections in school. I'm primarily self-taught as an artist. I thought I drew a lot on my own, but ever since getting into this atelier environment, I draw ALL the time now. I draw all day in studio, then come home and draw for 6 more hours. It just feels right.

    Good luck with whatever you choose to do, just remember it's a long, hard road, but it's fun as hell.

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    cristian- art colleges will not make you better. By that I mean they will not take anyone and turn them into masters over 4 years. They expect you to already know how to draw fairly well and this has to show in the entrance portfolio. They take what you have and give you an environment where you can learn from others and make some connections. The only place I've seen so far that actually believes anyone can draw and will accept anyone are the ateliers and IMO they produce more skilled traditional artists than most dedicated art schools.

    Learning to draw is a long process. Expect it to take many many years. It takes about 3-5 years just to get the basics down. After that, well...it's up to you how far you want to go.

    Oh and synoptic you're about where I was at around 8-10 months ago. What I did was take in all the advice I could and just worked with that. It's amazing what you can do if you just work at it. Never stop learning and improving yourself. Never say it's 'good enough'.

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    thanks again.

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    just when your hand is swollen, bleeding, and throbbing.. draw more.
    Make sure to switch hands though, that way the other one can recover enough to use again :p

    Seriously though, practice is teh main thing. Doing drawing exercises is an excellent idea, but can get dull after a while if it's all you do. Also if you just draw from reference and do exercises you're gonna end up not being able to draw without them. Split your time about 50-50 between what you enjoy drawing/drawing without references and doing exercises.

    As for places for exercises, the top of this thread has a few you can do Theres also the CA.org Academy thread to go to if you're interested.

    Anyway, good luck with the course, hope it goes well

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  21. #21
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    Learning to draw. . . the academic way

    Check out the threads on Bargue drawing in the Techniques forum by MindCandyMan, HERE

    Martín

    Last edited by Martin de Madrid; October 22nd, 2004 at 09:58 AM. Reason: Insert link
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