Becoming An Artist

This is an excerpt from my book: "Artistic Fundamentals - Your First Steps to Becoming An Artist".

Also in my new book you will find chapters on perspective, composition and color theory for beginners. 

The chapters in this book are for beginners, simply described in detail with pictures and examples to follow. You can purchase the downloadable book in pdf format for $10 USD, by following the link top left or going to my book page here. Books and Tutorials.

Learn To See: Learn to draw what you actually see. Start simple. Use a photo of a single object, like a flower or shovel. Study the subject before you start. Notice every tiny detail, every line and shape. Note the shadow and light. Be prepared to draw these things. Don’t be afraid to draw and paint all the depth of shadow and intensity of light that is there. Draw that object so many times you can draw it in your sleep. 

Trees are a good practice sample. Start drawing individual trees in detail. Draw one tree over and over again, adding in every detail and shadow until it’s perfect. Then do it again, looking closely for more detail and correction to add with each drawing. Use a photo, even if you take it yourself. Turn it upside-down to draw what you see. How close did you get to the photo? This will give you practice in drawing what is there, not what your brain thinks should be there. Rid yourself of any pre-conceived ideas of what a flower or tree or even a shovel should look like and just draw details that are there. 

Use a grid to start with, drawing grid lines lightly with pencil on your photo and on your paper. Then slowly work your way through the basic principles in this book. Practicing each one continuously and reading through them again as you develop your next project. A good work of art is the result of much study, planning and thought. It never just “happens”. 

Slow Down: How quickly your skill develops depends on the effort you put into it. Forget speed. That will come with practice. Let your skill take all the time it needs to develop. If it takes a month of practice for you to draw that one item in every detail perfectly or well enough to make you happy, then that’s what it takes. Do it right, not quickly. You will get faster with practice. Is your goal to become faster than anyone else, or a better artist?