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Two Ways to Stay Motivated!

Two things that really help me to stay motivated in drawing is: 1) Don’t forget to use your strengths and 2) Schedule time to draw! It’s very easy to get discouraged or think that you aren’t improving if you don’t forget to fall back on what you are good at drawing. It also is a great help to plan time to draw so you can hone your skills.

Use Your Strengths to Stay Focused

I’m using a guided portfolio to teach myself how to draw women’s heads and, yes, I get frustrated with myself and I can’t concentrate. I try to make the images look the way I think they should look and do they? Not yet! Discouraging. Why not go back to what I do best, chibi! If you are trying to teach yourself how to draw and find yourself experiencing those same feelings, go back to something you are good at! Don’t think that you have to continue at something that is clearly getting frustrating. Step back. Breathe. Clear your head. Find something else that you are good at, and reward yourself with a success! Give yourself something positive to do so you can go back to your more challenging drawing with a more positive attitude and approach.

Since I started teaching myself a more fusion, comic-book style of drawing I have experienced a few set backs. So instead of continuing (which I will do, just not right now) I decided to draw a few chibi ideas. Why? I’m good at it and I need the pep talk!

ACreedI’ve been sketching originals to show at Dev Fare which is coming up next month! This is Ezio from Assassin’s Creed. I’ve gone back to the stuff I’m good at so I can treat myself to a success. A win! A positive thingy! Whatever you want to call it. Even though you may be challenging yourself to grow as an artist with developmental practice, don’t forget to go back to what you are good at and draw that! If you excel at landscapes, do a landscape, cartoons, do some cartoons, if you draw still-life really well, draw those. Don’t think you are locked into one type of drawing style or subject. Do what you do best so you can remind yourself that you are talented and can draw!

Finding Time?

Another thing that many people forget is that you don’t find time to draw, you make time to do it. Choose a time, maybe just 15 to 30 minutes a day, and draw. Try to pick a consistent time period and commit to drawing, like every day at 6:00 pm. It really doesn’t matter if it’s doodling for fun or serious developmental drawing like a guided portfolio, just draw!

I drew a Skeletor to match my He-Man coloring page that I released a few weeks ago. I decided to draw in chibi style using some of the ideas that I’ve been reading about in my research. I actually think this Skeletor turned out better than if I had drawn it my old way (which is to draw the head first instead of drawing the body first). I read that it’s easier to draw a more fluid and natural pose if you draw the torso first. So I did.

BUT, would I have discovered that if I didn’t draw on a regular basis? Maybe? I make an effort to draw at least 30 minutes, 4 times a week. After all, things do come up and you may not be able to put in the time. Plan for flexibility. Don’t set up an impossible schedule like every single day for four hours, make it reasonable. You are more likely to stick to a schedule if it’s manageable and practical. Always allow for a little wiggle room.

Skeletor

That’s it, those are my two big recommendations for staying motivated: draw to your strengths and make the time to draw.

Now the only thing is to find something to draw!

 

 

 

 

 


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Using a Guided Portfolio

Yes, I’ve been practicing drawing the female head and face. In fact, I’ve been researching two books about figure drawing. The first is Drawing the Head and Hands by master illustrator Andrew Loomis. The second is Dynamic Figure Drawing by equally talented Burne Hogarth. Both are EXCELLENT books for researching how to improve your drawing. I think my drawing skills are improving with research and practice.

Here is a video I made about practicing. I’m going to make more videos focusing on the female figure and drawing hands, since that is what I’m attempting to improve upon. Let me know in the comments if these videos are helpful or informative.


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Originals and Coloring Pages

I just made a few videos for the YouTube channel which I will be able to embed into my posts so stay tuned.

As for coloring pages, I actually get them from the original inked drawings I make for my prints. Recently, however, my business partner and I think we should concentrate on more original and unusual stuff for the originals I sell at cons. Since Dev Fare is coming up and Vanquish Studio will be there, I NEED IDEAS! Anyway, a dark manga called Black Butler seems a good choice and Attack on Titan is a challenge to draw in chibi style. So I’m going to try and create those characters. I also think I should do a One-Piece, One-Punch Man, and Naruto. That brings the total to five new originals (and possibly coloring pages). Any other ideas? Please leave a comment.

In the mean time, I drew this as a tattoo for a friend. He never did it. That’s okay, you can still enjoy the art. Next up is a matching Skeletor! I may do a series on old television shows like the Thundercats. Hmmm. . . .

he-man-coloring-page
he-man-coloring-page


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Ideas for Prints?

These are the first 10 prints available online through our Etsy shop which means I have to come up with some new stuff.

So far I’ve gotten suggestions for a new Harley and Joker (although I already have Arkham Asylum Harley and Joker) those two are a hot item. I’ve also had a few requests for a new Aquaman. Do you have an idea for a new print? Let me know in the comments!

Etsy ad


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New Etsy Shop is OPEN!

Well, I can’t believe it but I finally opened an Etsy shop. When I show my art prints at comic conventions a lot of people ask me if I sell online. Regrettably, I always tell them, “No,” but no mas! Vanquish Studio has opened an Etsy shop! We have 10 art prints for sale: Superman, Black Panther, Justice League Aquaman, Batman, Harley Quinn, The Incredible Hulk, Wonder Woman, Gambit, Venom, and Loki.

I chose Gambit for my Etsy shop logo because. . .well. . . he’s cool!Etsylogo
Check out the prints for sale! Remember, most of them are final runs.

New stuff will be coming out in 2019.


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How Do You Find Your Style?

I’ve been practicing drawing women’s faces for a couple of weeks now. I think I’m getting better but I keep asking myself, “How do I find my style?” I know I want to draw in a Manga-American hybrid style but I really don’t know what that would look like. Moreover, I know that the central theme of my comic is forgiveness. What kind of style does that one have??!!?? I mean really? How does a person find a style? How do you know how to draw?

The truth is that you will develop your style the more you draw. It will come to you naturally. For example, I’ve always drawn characters with big heads and little bodies so chibi was a natural style to gravitate towards. Even before I knew there was a name for it, I was drawing in that type of style.

woman1But what about my comic book style? I need to make my characters look believable and semi-realistic. I’m also shooting for a more minimalist approach. I want to add the shading and the values to the faces using color gradients and shapes more than lines to define the nose, cheeks, and chin. As I’m drawing (and practicing) I’m watching my use of lines around the eye and nose areas.

Natural Progression

As you continue to draw more regularly, a style will indeed evolve. It does so my osmosis! So even though you may feel like you DON’T want to practice, do it anyway. Break the time up into chunks and work on different aspects of your drawing to keep things fresh. For example, practicing gesture drawing, and then spheres and cones building of the form, and then shading would break up a comic book character drawing session.

As for me and my practicing, I’m drawing the eyes more comfortably and using a more almond-shape to them. In all the books that I’ve been researching, they suggest this look for that sexy, sultry, femme-fatale look I’m going for in my anti-heroine.

This is an inked practice pic I did just below. Have I found my style yet? No, but I’m getting more comfortable. In fact, the next evolution of my practicing is to: A) find my style by increasing frequency in drawing and B) draw a style sheet for my character once I feel comfortable with how I draw women.

As you practice keep setting new goals for yourself to keep things fresh. woman2

I’ve been researching different artists’ styles that I really like. I’m not going to copy their style or anything like that because they’ve already done it and I can’t do it any better than they already did! Does that make sense?

Instead, I’m going to find things that I like about the way they draw and incorporate it into my drawing to make it my own. The two examples in this post were made using magazines as reference material. I’m going to try combination drawing: both from my head and reference, so I get less dependent on reference material and can draw “my style” of women on my own.

What I Need to Do Next

  • Keep practicing, increasing frequency
  • Research other artists’ styles
  • Try to develop my own style
  • Draw a character sheet

Remember, your style will come to you naturally, don’t force it. Keep practicing and trying new things and gradually, you WILL develop your style.

 

 

 

 


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New Coloring Page Release!

I previously posted that Vanquish Studio will be at Dev Fare this year! What exactly IS Dev Fare? It is a FREE Fan Culture Convention held at Arizona State University/ West Campus (west valley, for those here in the metropolitan Phoenix area). This year it will be on Saturday, March 23rd, from 10 am until 6 pm.

It is unique in that it is hosted by the Society of West ASU Gamers which is an organization run entirely by students. It is NOT sponsored by big corporations. These people do it for the fun. This year will be the third year they have hosted the convention. Dev Fare 2019 has a vendor hall, panels, a video game tournament, and a costume contest, just to name a few things! The event is family friendly, has free admittance, and also has free parking.

You can’t go wrong. So if you are looking for something to do, check it out.

dev fare

Vanquish Studio will be debuting the new Baby Groot! We sold out, YES SOLD OUT, of the original Groot (which I don’t think is nearly as adorable as this one). So, of course, we have to make a new one for 2019 and restock!

I decided to release the black and white as a new coloring page. Scroll down and click the link to download it. The colored version will be available at Dev Fare!

Baby Groot Coloring page
baby-groot-coloring-page