Advice for Beginner Artists

I am writing this blog post because I want to pass on advice that I wish I had heard earlier in my artistic journey.
It wasn't too long ago that I embarked on this adventure so I still have visceral memories of what it was like to be a beginner.
Here are some of my tips.

  1. Lean Into what you Love

As you start to learn more and more about drawing, the temptation will be to learn how to draw everything. I believe this is the quickest path to burnout and turning drawing, which is some of the most fun you can have, into loveless labor. You have to experiment to find what you enjoy, don't be too rigid about your interests but also don't feel bad for always drawing the same things. You as a person won't be completely different day to day, so what you enjoy drawing won't change every few minutes.

Also, keep in mind that drawing what you love is how you develop your style. Most of your favorite artists probably draw the same things and you love every piece because its an honest reflection of their interests. It's this deep connection that comes when an artist really pushes into their interests. Don't doubt your own interests.

2. Fast Track your Style

Most professional artists will tell beginners not to worry about style, which I agree with. Many creatives feel like they need to “find” their style BEFORE they start creating and that is a huge mistake. It assumes that style is something that can be found and something that stays consistent, which are both wrong.

The desire to find a style is natural and I don't blame anyone for focusing on it. Everyone wants to create something unique so they can provide new value to the world, it's natural. The mistake is when the focus on style hinders the creation process. 

So how do you fast track style then? Well its quite simple, you just create massive amounts of drawings. Instead of spending a lot of time on rendering/shading pieces, try to create a new piece every single day for a month. What happens is that you will start to lean into your natural voice because you will be too pressed for time to be clever.

The reason most artists struggle with finding their style is that they have a hard time accepting themselves as they are. It's difficult to see value in the things that come naturally to us and much easier to see value in what others do. Create a lot and let your voice come out. 

3. Develop a Practice

There is the romantic idea that artists have to be fully free to be creative so any type of schedule or organization wouldn't lead to great art. There might be a few artists that are able to create from a chaotic place but for most of us, it will require regular practice. Keeping a schedule and a daily practice is what will separate out those who will improve quickly and those who will not.

Every professional artist I know uses a schedule to keep them working. Relying on inspiration or motivation is too inconsistent to actually create the momentum to become an artist. I have a rule that I am allowed to sit in my chair for hours and not draw if I really don't feel like drawing that day, but I'm not allowed to do anything else. Within 5 minutes of boredom, I will begin to create, real inspiration comes from leaving openness in your life. 

4. Chunks of Focus

The biggest problem for the modern artist today is the cellphone/internet. Even though the internet can be the greatest resource for learning (like these blog posts/tutorials), it can also be the downfall of an artist. Practicing your drawing in chunks of focused time where you dont allow distractions will be key to massive growth.

For myself I use a timer that I put on and until the alarm rings, I work without any notifications or distractions. These chunks are between 1-2hrs, but I started this practice with 20minute chunks. The length of the chunk isnt the critical point, the important part is getting into the habit of delineating between work time and slacking off time. 

A lot of artists work many hours but only get a few hours of work done because they stay distracted. I've spoken to artists who create a massive amount of content with only 1-3hrs of work per day because they stay focused. Even if you cant afford to draw 1hr per day, even 10 minutes every single day can get you very far if you take it seriously. 

5. Dedicated Workspace

If you are trying to get into the habit of drawing you should consider creating a space to draw. You may only have a small desk in your room, but you can still leave a sketchbook on the side and always have the tools ready so you are reminded of drawing every single day.

Having a trigger or reminder for the habit will make it way easier to develop a practice of drawing. Keeping a clean workspace with the tools you enjoy and all the resources you will need can save you tons of time. 

6. No Excuses

While reading this you may have come up with excuses for why you cant turn drawing into a regular habit. The idea of pursuing this might scare you so it will be tempting to seek refuge in an excuse that seems reasonable to you. This is natural, Ive hesitated in every single pursuit that actually mattered to me. Ultimately it will be up to you to see through these excuses and take the steps forward. 

You dont need fancy tools, mentors or resources to learn how to draw. There are tons of free resources for learning and most paid tutorials (like the ones on my site) are really quite cheap. I do my finished drawings with ballpoint pens that cost about $2.50 each, you really dont need fancy tools or paint to become an artist. 
The only thing you may lack, if anything, is courage. The good news is that courage is a choice, you can stare this new challenge in its eyes and move forward with confidence if you choose to do so.

What do you choose to do?

How to Draw Faces : Step by Step Course
  • Video Tutorial on how to draw the face using a simple step by step approach that is beginner friendly

  • Comes with 5 Worksheets that we will work through to help solidify what we are learning!!

  • I am really excited to be part of your art journey so I thank you for allowing me to help you learn how to draw the face :D

  • Upon purchase you will receive a printable PDF file that has the link to the video at the bottom of the first page. Click the link while on the computer to see the video.

Add To Cart
How to Draw Hair : Step by Step Course
  • Video Tutorial on how to draw the hair, this will teach you the foundation skills for drawing any hairstyle from imagination!

  • Comes with 3 Worksheets that we will work through to help solidify what we learn :D

  • I am really excited to be part of your art journey so I thank you for allowing me to help you learn how to draw the face :D

  • Upon purchase you will receive a printable PDF file that has the link to the video component at the bottom. Click the link at the bottom of the PDF to load the video.

Add To Cart