hi,i was just wondering how long have you been drawing to be this good?i know it's kinda a stupid question but it just seems like everyone on here is so good at drawing and art but then i look at my drawings,they are just terrible. im 16 and i want to be an animator,do you think it's too late to start?(i went to drawing classes when i was younger,but they didnt really teach me anything useful like how to draw perspective and stuff like that but blogs like yours help me a lot:)thank you!)
okay, I’m gonna crack my knuckles a bit and try to be inspiring to you and to others who face the same dilemma.
When I was 16, I also really wanted to be an animator! I even had connections to Pixar and whatnot because I live in a city that’s literally neighbors with Emeryville. Lucky, right?
But when I was 16, my art looked like this:
Embarrassing, right? Buuuut I never stopped. I knew the hardships and honestly I really did give up sometimes. I hardly ever practiced and when I first entered college my art professor told me I drew like a three year old.
I’m 24 now, and my professor told me that 5 years ago. It took me forever and I still have a shitload to learn, but my art looks like this now. I might not be an animator, but honestly that’s only because of my real life situations that’s keeping me from getting there rather than my own drive.
To be honest, it’s never ever ever too late to start drawing. There are a lot of great artists that didn’t start drawing until well into adulthood! It’s really great that you wanna start drawing and that alone is the best thing you can start out with. The real test is to continue to improve by learning different techniques and to learn from your past mistakes.
I really hope this helps and that you do continue to grow and improve in the world of art!
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I was wondering how you manage to make your faces actually look like the person they are meant to look like? Some of my facial features always end up looking the same, and yours are so perfect... *showers you with love* You are my art guru.
BUT NO in all seriousness, thank you! You’re a sweetheart! ;O; Proportions are pretty awful to get down when you’re just starting out, and while there are a bunch of ways you can start practicing with it, it’ll be difficult to be absolutely precise. I still struggle with proportions occasionally. Fun fact: I don’t post all of my work. I only post the work that turned out okay aHA. So basically don’t be frustrated when every single piece doesn’t turn out. Here are a few tips.
Let’s use this picture of Laurence and Hugh because why not.
They’ve both got eyes, a nose, and a mouth, so why do they look different?
These lines are the generic way of mapping out where to put things together. I used this when I was starting out and it’s a helpful way of getting your hand and wrist to work together. At this point they both nearly look the same. I say this a lot, but I think it’s important: shape is what puts a drawing together.
Compare features of the face to help you figure out placement.
The bottom of his ear lines up right to the middle of his nostril. His tear ducts line up right at the corners of his mouth. Then you can get super technical and say, oh, the outer corner of his eye lines up with that fold in his collar and then from there you can see other things like the approximate distance from the edge of his mouth to that connecting line from the eye to the collar. They don’t meet so his mouth is smaller than the width of his eyes, etc, etc. Whatever works, man.
This is a favorite technique of mine so lemme use another example:
Eventually you get to the point where most of your proportional accuracy will come from just looking. You will eventually adjust your eye to see what makes a person who they are by the shape of their features.
Laurence has narrow, oval shaped eyes, while Hugh has more of a diamond shape. Not everyone has perfect almond shaped eyes. You can capture an entire character personality through their eyes alone, so shaping them out is extremely important.
The way you draw your lines is also important. Sharp and smooth lines will give your drawing personality. Reveals the character, in a sense.
Other things to consider: the shape of the nose.
Mads’ is flat and goes down in a steady slope, while Hugh’s juts out in a smooth, almost concave curve.
SHAPES SHAPES SHAPES. Use shapes and structure to find proportion.
I did a lot more than I anticipated omg. Oh gosh and I have a feeling I kinda just rambled and didn’T MAKE ANY SENSE AH. Let me know if you need more help or if I was speaking gibberish I am so bad at putting my thoughts into words aHHHH. But gosh I hope this was at least vaguely helpful. You’re a darling and thank you for your kind words!
Could you help me understand celtic knots? Like a celtic cross or something close to that.. I've been trying to draw them and i just can't get it right. Thank you!
I don’t usually look for tutorials for individual people but here’s a basic one. I personally don’t draw them myself so I wouldn’t know how helpful it is, but the way he does it seemed simple enough to understand.
hey, mangosenpai, if you don't mind me asking, how do you have your lineart have so many colors? Is there a trick to coloring lines? :0
It’s easy! I draw my lineart freehand on sai, so my lineart layer is always transparent by default. Knowing that, I just use Opacity Lock to lock all the transparent pixels!
Make sure the lineart layer has that little square checked-
I tend to have the colors I want to use handy. Once the layer is locked, I start coloring the lines slowly and carefully-
And I keep this up until everything I want colored is finished-
And that’s it! I actually color my lines AFTER I finish my base colors/shading so I can see exactly what colors I can use to make them stand out.
If you scan your lineart, however, it’s not transparent by default and unless you do some other things to make it transparent (I never scan lineart so I can’t tell you how to do this, sorry!), opacity lock won’t work the way you want it to-
So, what you can do, if you’re lazy like me and don’t care to make the lineart transparent, is just make a new layer on TOP of your lineart and set it to screen like so-
And just color your lines on that layer! Make sure when you’re ABSOLUTELY DONE to merge the coloring layer with the lineart layer so when you set the lineart layer to multiply (so you can actually apply your base colors), your base colors won’t look weird.
Drawing perspective is considered one of the hardest things in art, except the mistakes usually done are pretty much always the same and can be avoided with a little care.
1. Lines not reaching the vanishing point
Well this is pretty simple to avoid but it’s the most common mistake. It’s probably due to either carelessness or really not having understood the basic of perspective. I encourage you to go back and find some basic tutorial for this.
Anyway, be ALWAYS careful about where to ‘send’ your lines, they NEED to go towards the correct vanishing point or it will just look awkward. Double check if necessary.
And always, ALWAYS use a ruler.
If your style requires lines that are a bit less geometrical (as mine do, I have a style of inking that’s sketchy so ‘perfect’ lines drawn with a ruler usually don’t fit well in the picture) use a ruler anyway for the pencils and then ink later by freehand. At least you’ll have correct guidelines underneath.
For traditional drawing be sure you have a ruler and be sure to use it for each one of your lines.
Modern drawing software will help you a lot with this if you draw directly on computer: painting software such as Clip Studio Paint or Manga Studio 4EX or 5 have perspective tools that will automatically snap your lines towards the vanishing point.
it’s quite a long tutorial, you’ll find the rest under the Read More or you can download the pdf file here