Monday, August 6, 2012

Zoo Sketches and Tips and Shortcuts for Beginners

Here are some sketches from the zoo yesterday!






Today I was asked for drawing tips. My gut response is to just say, practice practice practice. This is true! That's probably the single most important thing I can tell you. But if you want something that you can work on IMMEDIATELY, and see results on your very next drawing, there are three things I can think of.

1) It's really amazing how few lines or strokes you need to represent an image. Look at my kangaroos. Other than lines for restating, You have about a dozen lines and BAM - you have a kangaroo. Try practicing stroke economy. Think before you place down lines. You draw less and the viewer fills in the details. You'll have a nice, clean picture that's easy to read. And you can start doing this right now!!

2) Shape design. Simple, overall shape design. A lot of Disney characters can be distilled into a few simple shapes. The details go on top of these simple shapes. Work with an overall simple shape first, you'll be amazed at how good your drawings will become! Look at the geese. They have simple overall shapes. I've captured their goose-ness with the big picture, the details only help.

3) Relate. Often, I see drawings that are good except that things are just off. Always know where the center line is and always relate left and right. Things line up rhythmically. (See Leonardo da Vinci's Vitruvian man). How does the left knee relate to the right? Left shoulder to right shoulder? Relating makes a drawing more solid. Check out the crocodiles. (The drawing of the pair) See how I drew a centerline down the back of the croc? That's so I can quickly relate the left and right side. You'd be surprised how many artists overlook this process!

So, those are my specific tips for beginners. Practice is a general tip, good for everything, but I think these tips can make your very next drawing better!

Tiff

10 comments:

Couch Surfing Ori said...

Some superb tips there. I'll put them to use as soon as... tonight.

Mauricio said...

Spot on tips, Tiff!

Ted Blackman said...

You're right. And I've found that the simpler the dog leg the better it looks, after all those years drawing them with too many joints. I even saved one of your dog drawings a year ago as a reminder to keep things simple. You know legs, Tiff.

kartoon kid said...

Love you sketches with breakdowns and your water colors are amazing! Beautiful work :D

Dawn said...

Fantastic sketches, I love the crocs! Thanks for the tips as well. Good things to remember and work on.

Mattias Adolfsson said...

Lovely sketches

Elizabeth Rose Stanton said...

Excellent, excellent advice! I love these sketches.

Justin Rodrigues said...

Great sketches and great advice. It's all about "Intelligent Mileage"!

L ROSSI said...

Lovely studies and thanks for those 3 points - I really need to try that n.n
Hope all is well!

C.Deboda said...

Great sketches as always! Good idea too about line economy. As a beginner myself, I need to constantly remind myself of this when I sketch. Keep the drawing tips and tutorials coming!