Back in the day when I dreamed of being an artist, I would spend hours drawing in the hope of being successful. To this day I don’t think that I actually knew what, ‘successful’ meant to me, at least in the broader sense. I guess that I just wanted people to like the results of my hours and hours of sitting at the dining room table drawing cars and monsters (yes, I drew monsters *sigh). The truth though is that I gave up before I ever got the adulation that I so craved. Oh, my girlfriend said that she liked my work, and maybe some friends gave a compliment here and there, but the vast majority of the people that saw my renderings just kind of nodded their head and maybe mumbled something positive. I wasn’t naive or stupid I knew my work wasn’t very good, but it probably took me about a year before I realized that I never really understood how to draw. I would buy books and look through magazines to get some hint on how to make my work look like the pros, but I could never manage to make the vampire or Ford Mustang look like I wanted it to. So I eventually gave up.
I think a lot of people go through something like what I did so many years ago, especially when it comes to artistic endeavors. The one statement I hear more than the, “I’m not very good at math.” comment is, “I don’t have an artistic eye.” sometimes it’s a variation like, “I don’t have an artistic bone in my body.”
I recently read an article at Creative Bloq entitled, “20 sketching tips to help you make your first marks.” I wouldn’t say that it’s a great article, but I will say that I wish I would have had something like this way back in the day. Like I mentioned, I didn’t have any guidance and to see these tips laid out in the way that the author lays them out is something I would have definitely benefited from. The article describes and gives examples of the different types and hardness of pencils and then gives clear examples of the principals of design. They go into symmetry and using textures, these are all the things that I teach in my classes so trust me when I say that this is a great resource to read, or even just to bookmark in case you ever feel like sketching.
I do want to mention something that I don’t like about Creative Bloq though. The site is there to make money and unfortunately they tend to try to push people to purchase something, which I understand, they have to pay the rent. The problem that I usually have with sites like this is that I feel like they are trying to trick me. So although I didn’t see anything that looked spammy in this article, some of their articles will suggest that you buy something or refer you to an affiliate site where they can make a commission on you.