Regarding the statement of the famous English philosopher and leader of the Enlightenment, John Locke, that “diligence replaces talent better than talent replaces diligence,” we think that this is true for most life situations. But what about art? Is it really possible to replace true talent using hard work? Is learning how to get better at drawing and being a hard worker enough?
Drawing technique basics
With sufficient desire and training, any person, without exception, can develop and improve drawing skills. From a technical point of view, drawing is a skill, and any skill can be cultivated by constant training.
Here are the 5 basic principles of drawing:
- Perception of the whole (complete) picture
- Ability to distinguish the ratio of objects
- Perception of space and its boundaries
- Perception of the objects themselves and their structure
- Understanding chiaroscuro
Drawing simple geometric shapes is considered the foundation of drawing skills. Though it is not the most interesting task, it trains mindfulness, the ability to distinguish objects, and perception of space.
Beginner artists are recommended to start their training with simple graphite sketches. In this case, the best tools are a simple hard-soft pencil and a rubber eraser.
After mastering the basic principles of drawing, you can easily climb to the next step to get better at drawing and start working with gouache, graphite, and pastels.
Top 5 exercises to develop artistic skills
There are many different exercises to improve art skills. We have selected 5 of the easiest and most popular exercises for you.
Copying your favorite works. Among all of the tips for better drawing, this one is the simplest and most enjoyable one. Every time you see an artist's work that you like, try redrawing it. This is true not only for the works of famous artists, but also for any drawings, installations or compositions that catch your eye.
In the process of copying, pay attention to the details. Seek an understanding of the image that you are copying. Mechanical sketching won't do any good, but meaningful research will help you find your own style and bring insight into your essence as an artist. After making several copies, try to create your own drawing by analogy.
The daily sketches method is an effective way to develop your skills. It is not that important what exactly and when you paint, but the main point is to do it regularly. You can sketch individual details or draw outlines of objects. Don’t spend too much time on this activity; just make a schematic sketch in pencil. This exercise helps to hone the vision of objects and the relationship between them, and it teaches discipline.
Character creation is a very interesting and creative exercise. The main idea is to create your own character and practice drawing it daily. Draw it with different facial expressions and in different situations. Over time, you can complicate this task by drawing your character in motion.
Improvement of previous work. The essence of this exercise is not only to hone your drawing skills, but also to track your progress as an artist. After a while, return to an old project. Choose one which had seemed almost flawless to you at the time of its creation. You will be surprised by how many shortcomings and mistakes you find in it now. The difference in your progress will be especially noticeable if your creative style has changed. Take your previous work as a reference and create a new, improved version of it!
Plein air painting. Plein air is a practical and versatile exercise with two goals: giving a practice session and developing your inner artist. It is a French expression that means to paint outdoors. In nature, you can experience unity with nature, immerse yourself in your inner world, and engage in meditation. En plein air, it is especially productive to work on mistakes, search for inspiration, and shape your own style.
You can use our tips for being a good drawer and add to this post by commenting more exercises and techniques concerning how to draw better. Whatever you choose, the key is to hone your technique constantly and work hard. With a strong desire and hard work, you can improve your drawing skill enormously.
This is an especially effective solution when combined with finding your own experiences and in the process of researching how to improve drawing skills. However, nothing can guarantee you the status of a popular artist or make your paintings bestsellers automatically, but you can always paint for your own pleasure. In case you have an innate talent, then practicing and honing your skills will only make your drawing technique even more excellent.