9 Tips To Get You Drawing Like A Pro
Learning to draw can often seem like a mountain to climb.
How can I get good at drawing?
What’s the best way to do things?
Below, we will show you the 9 top tips that you can do today, to get you drawing like a pro.
1. Know Your Tools
There are literally hundreds of choices when it comes to drawing tools. So, where do you start?
Stick with the basics. All you need to start drawing is a pencil, some paper and an eraser. I use an HB, 2B and 8B pencil to get a full range of lights and darks in my drawings.
If you want to practice realism, then I recommend getting a blending stump and a kneaded eraser.
2. Know How To Hold Your Pencil.
Ever had a sore hand after a solid session of drawing? Maybe you’re holding the pencil the wrong way….
Instead of holding a pencil like you would for writing, considering holding it in an overhand grip between all four fingers and your thumb.
This grip forces you to draw with you shoulder , and allows for longer smoother lines. It can take a bit of practice, but it will give a strong sense of flow to your drawing, without cramping your hand.
3. Break Things Down To Simplified Large Shapes
When you first look at a complex image to draw it can be quite daunting. To make it easier, practice breaking down complex shapes into simple shapes and geometry.
Many things can be broken down into a collection of spheres,cubes and cylinders.
Whether it is a person, animal or an object, see if you break it down into these basic shapes and forms.
By breaking down complex forms into simple shapes, you will teach your brain to understand how space and form work.
4. Build Up From Simplified Shapes
When you first look at an amazing piece by your favourite artist, it’s easy to convince yourself you can’t do it.
However, most artists start with the basic shapes when creating an artwork, then refine everything gradually to produce the final art piece.
You may have seen the human body broken down in a collection of cubes, cylinders and spheres. It is easier to move these simple shapes around to find the pose you want, then add the details later.
While the previous tip was about simplifying complex objects, this tip is about using that understanding to reconstruct that same object in any way that you want.
5. Develop Your Skills Using References
Your drawing skills will improve dramatically if you learn to draw from both photo references and from life.
Using references allows you to develop your observations skills and hand eye coordination. Studying how things look like in real life will greatly improve your work and make you more effective as an artist.
Once you have gained confidence from drawing from photo references, you can start including sketching from life into your daily or weekly routine.
The sooner you start working from reference, the better.
6. Take A Drawing Class
If you really want to improve quickly, take a drawing class. Classes provide a step by step guide to improving your drawing over time.
If you do a class in person, your teacher can give you customised feedback. If you aren’t able to make it to an in-person class, then there are plenty of online drawing classes for you to try.
Many of these online drawing tutorials provide detailed instructions, over the shoulder demonstrations as well as student feedback, all from the comfort of home.
7. Repeat An Image Over and Over.
If you want to have a bit of fun and challenge yourself, this is a great way to improve your skills around drawing a particular subject matter.
First, find a picture of something you want to draw and time how long it takes to draw it.
Next, draw the same image again, but this time see if you can draw it quicker.
Continue to do this as best you can, over and over, and continue to reduce the time limit.
Once you have done this 20 times or so, look back at your first image, and compare it to the last image you drew of the same thing. You will find your drawings are looser and more relaxed.
As you progress through the repetitions you become aware of the relevant forms, lines, details and overall silhouette of the object.
This exercise will help you greatly in understanding an image or object.
8. Tackle Your Weaknesses
Many artists have something they aren’t confident in. Don’t avoid these “flaws”, attack them head on.
It’s common to be fearful or avoid doing things that we aren’t good at. However, this approach can bring your drawing progress to a halt.
If you notice you are avoiding a particular subject matter, take some time to watch a couple of online tutorials and then draw the subject matter a bunch of times till you get the hang of it.
Set aside a couple of hours or a weekend to tackle your weaknesses.
9. Experiment And Have Fun
One you start to build up your drawing skills and understanding of structure and form, you can start to experience.
Whether it is playing with shape and form and distorting things in unique ways, or trying a different way of shading, keep it fun and playful.
You will try stuff, and it might look horrible. But you will also find those “happy accidents” that you love, and continue to refine till you have something uniquely yours.
If you continue to practice all the tips above, you are sure to take your drawing skills to the next level.