Many people get discouraged from drawing every day because they find it difficult. Some simple steps can change that. Here is a basic guide to how to draw better or improve your art.
Step 1- Material/Supplies
As you might have heard, you only need paper and pencil to make art. While this true, if you want to make a great masterpiece, you need good supplies. They do not need to be great but if they are not good enough, you can’t really get anywhere.
Paper- Good paper is vital for a good piece. You need to choose the right paper for your preferred medium. For example, if you use watercolor, a cheap paper will bruise easily, making it almost impossible to layer your colors. Using a type of paper for another medium than the one used won’t give you good results either. Types of paper are especially made for a medium and have special features that help a medium perform at its best.
Remember, the paper is what your art goes on. It is like the floor of a house. Without a good floor, a house cannot stand and so does your art.
Medium- A medium is what you use to make art. Watercolor, acrylic paint, gouache, inks, marker are all wet mediums while pencil, charcoal, pastels are dry mediums. All have gimmicky and professional versions. No matter what medium you use, stay away from the extremely cheap materials, will never give you good results, no matter what you try. Getting professional art supply obviously is a good idea if you want the absolute best results with color and pigments but it isn’t so good for your wallet. If your wallet isn’t dying from lack of money, go for it.
Here are some examples of expensive art supplies:
- Daniel Smith”s Watercolor- $7.15 per tube of paint
- Copic Markers- going for $7.99 a marker
- Prismacolor pencil-$1.27 per pencil
- Everything that is on Amazon that looks like kid craft kit that is above $15
Here are some examples of good, less expensive art supplies:
- Winsor and Newton Watercolor 12 color travel set- $14.99
- Ohuhu markers-$16.99 for 30 markers
- Prismacolor Scholar pencils-$22.95 for a set of 60 pencils
Step 2- Sketching
Now comes the hardest part of the art process, coming up with an original idea and making it a reality. There is little advice to give about coming up with ideas. A good way to do so is to get inspiration from other artists. Of course, do not steal another artists idea or copy his/her art as this would be art theft. Once you have a strong idea, you need to put it on paper. One technique that can help with this process is to make thumbnail sketches. These are tiny sketches that help figure out where everything goes in your drawing. When you are done, the real piece of paper finally comes in. Make sure your sketch is light so it is easy to erase later.
Some people don’t like having to sketch and ink on the same piece of paper, and so they use a lightbox. They sketch on light or cheap paper like printer paper and then transfer it onto another piece of paper by tracing it. Lightboxes can be quite expensive so improvising is very welcomed. For example, you could use a tablet with a white background or go with the cheapest of things, a window.
Step 3- Inking
This is probably the most stressful part of an artists life. This is the step that can either make or break a drawing. If the goal of the art piece is to get a painterly style or realism, then good for you, you can skip this entire section.
Smudges– This can either happen when a line isn’t quite dry while inking or after the inking is done and as a medium is applied to the piece, realization struck you but it is too late to fix the fact that the pen used wasn’t [insert medium here] proof. Smudges aren’t the end of the world but sometimes can be quite difficult to fix or hide in a piece.
Inking mistakes– These ones are probably the most annoying. Sketches are not always the easiest thing to decipher when inking comes around and while inking, the artist goes over a line that wasn’t meant to be inked. These are very frustrating but sometimes can be hidden.
Step 4- Color
This is usually the step where the chosen medium comes in. Although the process of coloring something is pretty straightforward, choosing color is often where people get stuck. A good color scheme can make your picture come together while a bad one can make viewers run away in horror.
There are no tricks to learning how to make colors work for you. The best way is to study color theory and experiment on what you like and dislike. Color generators are also one way to get color palettes when you are stuck, but do not rely to much on them. This one or this one are good and intuitive color generators. This is a great way to get color ideas and the possibilities with color generators are limitless.
Every child is an artist. The problem is how to remain an artist when we grow up. – Pablo Picasso
The important thing with art is to have fun with it. It may seem like you don’t improve for a while or just can’t get that hand right, but it doesn’t really matter. Don’t give up no matter what. Art takes time and practice. Like a lot of practice.So much that you will probably want to give up. Just take your time and you’ll get there eventually.
If art isn’t your thing or you just want to read something good, click here to read something else!