Learning to Draw

I’ve been blending for some time now, and am directing a feature film production even, but I still cannot draw well at all, so I figured it’s best that I learn as it will help me to convey my pre-visualized ideas much better so I won’t have to explain everything in extravagent detail.

So, I hope to use this thread to showcase my drawings and sketches as I improve my skills and hopefully I can get some feedback on areas where I need to improve. (I’m quite busy so I probably won’t post on a daily basis or anything, but whenever I have some free time I’ll try and work on some sketches and upload them if I can -I don’t have a scanner either so it will make this even more difficult, but I think I can make it work over time.)

Here’s a recent sketch I drew for a character concept in the film which I’m quite proud of, but will still accept critique of course:

Some background info: The character is a pick-pocketing, theiving, pirate girl named Nemusidian Jones (nicknamed Nemu) and as I created her as sort of a female Jack Sparrow (Pirates of the Caribbean) that’s the sort of look I want her to portray. This sketch in particular was to get an idea of how the lower part of her pants might look with her boots, but I also went ahead and sketches the rest of her body too to get an idea for her attire as well.

Let me know what you think. If the image isn’t working, let me know so I can fix it.


This might be a cliche but I thought since no one replied…

“Draw what you see with your own eyes, not what you THINK you see.” If you are trying drawing a cube, don’t just DRAW a cube, critically analyze all the edge angles, perspective, shadow, and shading. Then draw.

And that is why I think drawing a ‘female jack sparrow’ isn’t a good idea since you have no reference. You’ll end up pulling grade-3 drawing techniques out of a hat. :smiley:

If you want to draw people get the proportions right, start with stick men. If my arm only went to my waist or belt and you saw me walking down the street you would stare. I see you have an idea of what you want for clothes but do some research on figure drawing or even comic drawing to get a feel for the body under the garments. You don’t need to draw a detail sketch of the body just the pose and proportions. Also look up foreshortening a technique to draw a 3d figure in 2d.

Thank you both for your helpful advice.

I’m going to learn how to use the GIMP -I’ve been wanting to learn it for a while. I’m assuming it’s pretty straight forward, but I’m new to 2D Image Editing in general so it may take me a little while to figure out. But, as soon as I do I will be working on improving my skills some more.

I bought the book “Drawing on the Right Side of the Brain” (Featured on BlenderNation a while back) so I hope to get some nice insight from that too to improve my skills.

Excellent choice! I really love that book.

Drawing on the rightside of the brain (2nd revision by betty edwards) completly saved my drawing ability. I was worse than you and now I draw like the gallery in the front of the book : ). Take it seriously, do the excersises seriously, and you will, draw seriously : P.

When I was learning I started with stick figures and then I moved to box figures then to ball method for drawing bodies. Drawing IS something that can be taught, Talent however is not. Just keep a sketchbook with you all the time and by god please dont draw on school paper or graphing paper. You will regret it later. You can get a good sketch book at any book store. I recomend a small one that you can keep in your back pocket if possible.

Its also ok to try and copy another artists style, it will give you an idea on how and why they did some things. I love copying Todd Mcfarlane’s work. Right now I am looking at Khary Randolph’s work ( http://www.kharupt.com/ ) mainly because he uses both sketching and vector art to make some pretty sweet works. I hope you get into drawing more, its a good release.

Hmm? Why? I drew on school paper during high school but now that i’m an art student I draw on sketchbook and… I don’t regret anything…

I’m actually now waiting until I get a Tablet PC, because I don’t have a scanner and primarily I’ll be drawing concept art for 3D graphics.
But, I’ll have my Tablet with me at all times -like a digital sketchbook. Do you think that’ll work?
I’m sure the tablet won’t be the same as drawing on real paper but with some getting used to it won’t be too different and I’ll have much more control over my drawings if I mess up or draw parts in layers and such.

To be honest, that doesn’t make a lot of sense. You have pencil and paper now. You’re learning and it will take practice (and hundreds, if not thousands, of poor drawings) to hone your drawing skills. Pencil and paper is cheap, easy to replace and transport, and gives you just as much control over your drawings as anything else. Clean erasing on a computer is nice, but it can be a crutch and it’s not really necessary.

In fact, I recommend that you do a long series of drawings without erasing at all. Keep it loose and sketchy and if a line isn’t in the right place, simply draw another where it’s supposed to be. If you get to a point where you have too many markings on your paper, simply flip the page and start anew. Don’t focus on outlines. Concentrate on form and light. Draw in shadows and draw from the inside out (that is, give a basic structure and draw from there rather than drawing an outline and trying to fill in). There’s no such thing as a line in real life, so try to avoid hard lines when you’re learning.

All in all, I think waiting on a tablet PC is a bit silly and expensive. A scanner would be a cheaper alternative and, IMO, more effective.

As Fweeb says, there’s always paper.

But a Wacom 6x8 tablet can be had for ~$100 or less on ebay, and works great. I don’t even use a mouse anymore as the tablet and the extremly lightweight stylus works as a mouse in all apps. “LMB” is great, you just touch the tablet :slight_smile: