I was recently asked what the best methods are for improving drawing skills. In order for you to really draw well you need to roll up your sleeves and draw from LIFE and DRAW OFTEN!!!!!
10 Art Tips for Improving YOUR Drawing
- Set up a scheduled time that works best for you and stick to it. This can be 30 minutes a day or 4 hours in a block of time. Figure out when you will be less distracted and able to focus on the task of drawing. Do you work best in the morning, evening, weekends? Block out the time and make a commitment.
- Find subjects you love. Go for walks in the woods or in your garden. Inspiration is key. If you are drawing things you love you will be more motivated to get to work.
- Draw your subject from as many angles as possible. Don’t settle for just one view point. Rotate your subject. What does it look like above, below and at eyelevel?
- Work on areas that are your weak points. Trouble with foreshortening? Don’t always draw the easiest angle. Learning to train your eye to “see” means you need to practice the things that don’t come easy.
- Create a sketchbook with a theme of your favorite subjects. I have a leaf sketchbook for my garden. Anytime I get a new plant I do a drawing of the leaf. I research the type of leaf shape, margin, venation and other characteristics and accompany it along with written notes.
- Practise drawing techniques using blind contour, modified contour, gesture drawing, and measuring to find out which technique or combination of techniques works best for you.
- Experiment! Don’t be afraid to combine techniques and ideas. You never know when something unique and interesting can happen. Serendipity is waiting for you! Sketchbooks are a great way to practice this and keep as a record for future master pieces!
- Try different manufacturers of art supplies. Do you have a favorite pencil or is the one you are using scratchy and hard to work with. Don’t settle for substandard supplies. Find supplies you can buy single pencils or paints until you find the pencil that works best for you. I have worked with a least a dozen different manufacturers of graphite pencils. Some are awful, some okay and some AMAZING! (My favorite is a Japanese pencil called Tombow) Don’t struggle….work with amazing supplies. It is worth the money.
- Feeling like the drawing isn’t working? Maybe there is a drawing error? Your best solution is to grab a piece of tracing paper and place it over the drawing and make corrections before you start erasing. Many times the mistake is hard to find and you end up erasing the good parts of the drawing and leaving the mistake in place. Tracing paper gives you the opportunity to explore possible corrections.
- Continue learning! No matter what level you are currently at, there are always new things to learn. Find a local place you love and sketch outside. Find a group of people to get together and do critiques and sharing sessions.
Interested in learning more? My online classes are one way you can study with me in YOUR STUDIO at YOUR CONVENIENCE! If drawing is what you need to work on, I suggest you start with Foundation Drawing.