Different people learn in different ways. There is perhaps no one universal right way to learn how to draw. If it helps you, it works. However, I would have wished everyone was taught a good or superior way or technique to draw in the early school days or even before.
I strongly recommend getting the basics done well first if you are starting out because it is the solid foundation that we can build upon for more complex artwork, much like learning to stand and walk before running and jumping.
The importance of drawing
Drawing can be one of the fastest, easiest, and most natural ways to create an organic work of beauty. Think about it: We can depict a meaningful message or inspiration even in a small flat space that may not be possible in any other way.
Being able to produce works of art may not only bring joy and peace to the audience but also provide a means of livelihood. These can be classical and contemporary art paintings, comics & manga & the anime industry, children’s books marketplace, graphics & POD products marketplaces, etc.
3 ways to learn how to draw:
- Basic skills
Follow your interest and choose wisely. There are 2 types of learning resources for drawing: Adults and kids. Some good ones may even be suitable for both.
Doodling is just a natural way some people choose to express their creativity and have fun drawing. Simple doodles are getting more popular in modern art including creating patterns. Doodles can be minimalistic and simple yet aesthetic to both adults and kids. Depending on the individual, some will prefer to start learning to draw this way.
Domestika is a video courses community portal with creative experts sharing their knowledge. And some of the art teachers are not only experienced in their art niches but teach very well or are passionate about the teaching of their art.
It is interesting to note that just by glancing through some of the top courses, one can see so many students’ good artwork posted. I have probably never seen so many artistic achievements gathered on one single platform as Domestika!
A course I found is very popular with more than 130K students and with a high rating of 4.7. And understandably so because this particular Swedish doodling style artist, Matthias Adolfsson, (very experienced and worked with major productions such as Nickelodeon), whose works are popular with modern audiences. His style tends to be doodles with intricate details upon closer look.
He teaches from the ground up at an affordable price offering instructions on an appealing art style with good presentation. For those who love to doodle, this is a good opportunity to learn from a doodles master.
If you like to create modern patterns for adults, this free YouTube video on doodling Zentangle patterns can be a gem. This alone can be a specialized niche art.
A book for doodling or drawing with step-by-step illustration?
The purpose of tracing is that it may train our muscle memory by seeing the structure so we can sketch a close drawing without a reference after some tracing practice, however, it is just a stepping stone to creating new (important) artwork.
Tracing is certainly not my top recommended way to start off drawing, especially for aspiring serious artists. Why? It does not teach the basics with a guided thinking process nor a natural creative progression to making our original artwork.
Another way we can train ourselves to trace is by looking at the object closely and mapping it to the squares or dots on the paper or in our minds. It takes practice but it certainly can work for some people. For beginners or beyond, the paper can be a graph or dot-grid paper.
Update: Please find a more comprehensive review with examples here – Good And Easy Observational Drawing Course For Beginners.
Basic skills such as basic shape drawing and breaking down complex subjects or objects into these basic shapes are the classic superior drawing instruction in my humble opinion.
I highly recommend The Art And Science Of Drawing (top-rated with more than 11K ratings and excellent didactics) to those who can really appreciate the importance of a good foundation beginning with getting the subtle lines and shapes and lines right. Once we can draw beautiful basic shapes, we can progress to more. So far, he does not waste much time dragging out the content and mind that his first lesson can be life or game-changing content!
Brent Eviston has more than 10 Udemy courses so it will be good for those who wish to learn and do more after this course. I would like to think of his courses as affordable and online modern art academy, which students may not have to spend hundreds and thousands just to learn from a professional drawing artist.
I also like that Udemy courses (with many discount periods from time to time) are one-time payments and not monthly subscription-based.
With a programming background, I can certainly appreciate the importance of science in breaking down a big problem into manageable blocks of tasks. Therefore, being able to apply this in art personally and seeing it come together can be quite a marvel to wonder at after all.
Why is it important to learn how to draw?
Knowing how to draw, even if it is not a classic masterpiece style, can be a game-changing skill to acquire. Take for example Japanese manga and anime, drawing is somehow very much ingrained in part of their culture and expressions with their masterful creations and uniqueness. You will not find another country as popular and advanced in artistic drawing artwork creations as the Japanese: Some of their anime movies are of world-class top-notch quality in terms of artistic drawing portrayal and story-telling, with or without technological aids.
Learning to draw can be an important presentation skill for both personal and professional purposes. In our notes, a hand-drawn sketch can add a personal and beautiful touch. If we know how to draw well, we can practically create tons of original artwork for a hobby pursuit, relaxation outlet, or profitable sales.
Why draw artwork for selling?
People can recognize and appreciate good artwork. At times the more difficult it is to create, the higher the value because of its uniqueness and beauty. Drawing on paper or any medium is an ancient art skill. Being able to create a visual outlook that depicts beauty or tells a story is a wonderment itself.
How to choose a drawing book or course?
- After some purchases, I learned that one of the best and foremost factors I look for is the artwork on the cover. Ask if that is the type of artwork you would want to create. This is important because you do not want doubts later
- Secondly, is this the type of artwork you will spend energy to tirelessly learn? Do not do it if you will quit it after just an hour
- Can you connect with the teacher and his teaching style? Some art teachers are very experienced in both drawing and teaching; They may offer superior drawing method/s. And does he bother to reply to questions?
- Is it overly pricey?
- Can you find what you are looking for in the reviews?
An example of a review displayed below in the Art and science of drawing reveals what is relevant: Can it work for a complete beginner?
As for The Art of Sketching: Transform Your Doodles into Art, I have to scroll through pages of reviews and click translations for some before a reviewer by the name of Emily wrote about what I am looking for.
Personally, I realize the importance, and beauty, and want to address the fundamentals of the most basic shapes and strokes first. Generally, if you are on Amazon or Udemy, you would want to preview, look at the chapters covered, and read the reviews first to be sure it will be what you sign up for.
On another note, please avoid authors or materials that tend to be dark or unwholesome. These may impede your interest or learning later on.
What can I draw for selling?
All sorts of artwork. Manga, comics, POD (Shirts, stickers, duvets, etc) for marketplaces (Merch By Amazon, Redbubble, Etsy, Zazzle, etc), book covers and interiors, graphic portals (CreativeFabrica, Creative Market, Vecteezy, etc), and art galleries. Even vector art can benefit from our hand drawings.
An example of doodling art for coloring and activity book:
Drawing is absolutely not a get-rich-quick scheme. it can entail hard work involved as well. However, drawing to create a beautiful work of art can be a joyously creative process.
Creating a work of value is indispensable for appreciation. An appreciated work may be acquired for a monetary sum. Drawing is one of the most popular and direct ways to create such value. We should not overthink or feel so discouraged by comparing ourselves with others and give up even before starting. Drawing is a skill that can be acquired, as long as we learn from good instructions.
While I certainly do not claim or know how most people start learning to draw, these 3 ways are what I gathered to be some ways people may learn.
Having a systematic methodology for learning how to draw is better than none in my humble opinion. And children should definitely learn good basics when they had the interest, concentration, and opportunity to do so. Good And Easy Observational Drawing Course For Beginners can provide more details for your consideration.
Tracing may not be recommended by artists for drawing because it may not prompt us to think about the process or be creative with original artwork. Tracing may warm-up and train our drawing ‘muscles’ and eye-hand coordination before creative drawing.
Finding an experienced art teacher that teaches well and in a way that one can connect with should not be taken for granted lightly. We may have to take a few wrong turns before the right one. An example is Matthias Adolfsson, whose appealing doodling style, can be a joy to learn from: The Art of Sketching: Transform Your Doodles into Art. Another example is Brent Evitson.
Speaking from experience, choosing to learn from a good instructor and artwork that you like is important so we do not give up. Refrain from choosing a course simply by the number of video hours, practical quality instructions may be short to the point.
The detailed doodling style Matthias Adolfsson is an interestingly creative course that certainly many will be interested to learn from: The Art of Sketching: Transform Your Doodles into Art. You may agree if it somewhat reminds you of the game Machinarium. This course is my current personal favorite that I seem to be most productive with given the beginning time frame for learning.
I wholeheartedly recommend both The Art Of Sketching by Mattias Adolfsson and the Basic Skills (The Art And Science Of Drawing Udemy course by Brent Eviston) if you are on the fence, though Basic Skills contains certain adult art drawings some may find unsuited to minors. Learning from the right person who provides comprehensive, concise, and superior instructions is also equally important. Or we may fail to connect and develop our drawing art skills.
Do both courses if you like. Some people may not yet know which is for you. The important thing is that you like that kind of good art and the instructor teaches well enough for you to connect and continue drawing long after the course ended, otherwise there may be little or no point in starting without putting what you learned to use.
If you are new or looking for inspiration to learn how to improve your drawing or art, Domestika can be your best gem out there. Even just one affordable good Domestika course of your liking put into practice will yield an original artwork that you can call your own, and the opportunity to keep producing more indefinitely!
When is a good time to draw?
In the morning when you are fresh and relaxed. Alternatively, whenever you are in a good mood to draw or in a drawing roll. Having a cup of green tea or matcha may be a good idea for better mood and brain health.
How to draw digitally? How to draw on an iPad?
Procreate iPad is a very popular drawing or sketching and painting app.
Affinity Designer on iPad is another popular vector art designing app.