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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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How to Start Drawing?

I need to get better at drawing but I don’t know where to start?

Does that sound familiar? I can’t tell you how many times I’ve procrastinated because of that very same thing. I just don’t know where to start. So instead of actually trying to figure out a good starting point, I just put it off. So what can you do to figure out a good starting point?

Do a pre-assessment…

What do I mean by a pre-assessment? Well, you need to do a sketch of what it is you want to get better at and decide what you need to do from there. For example, I would like to create my own comic book. What’s the problem? I draw in a chibi style. My comic is a serious, action-packed, saga about a fallen angel seeking redemption. Does that sound like it would be good in the chibi style? Absolutely not. Of course I don’t want to do the Marvel style either. I’m looking for a hybrid style like my chibi-fusion only manga and American-style together. Hmmm, well I guess my style will evolve and I shouldn’t get too concerned this early. Regardless, I basically have to teach myself a new style to make my comic wish come true. My main character, the fallen angel, is a female. So, since it’s “not-my-strong-point” to draw women, I’ll start there. I’m not going to overload myself, I’m going to take it piece-by-piece. I’ll worry about the body later, right now, I’m drawing the face.

Below you’ll see, I drew a sketch of a woman’s face and inked it.

diagnostic

BE HONEST with Yourself!

Now, if I really look at this drawing, I could rip it to shreds but that really doesn’t help. STAY POSITIVE! Don’t just attack your art, be constructive.

For me, I definitely need to work on my hair styles. I also think I need to fix the jawline. I don’t think the placement of the jawline is feminine enough, too wide. I’ll have to research other artists and styles.

I like the placement of the features, so I’m good there, but the features themselves need some work. I don’t like the eyes and the lips. I want to make my fallen angel more sultry. I mean after all she has tempted mankind for centuries! I’m definitely going to need to look at that.

Now You have a starting point. Get to work!

Okay, so now I have some direction as to what to work on. I’m not just blindly drawing something not knowing what to improve on. I now know what I need to do:

  • research how to draw the female face and head
  • practice drawing hairstyles
  • practice drawing eyes, and lips (that’s just for starters)

So what are YOU waiting for? Draw a picture and critique it to determine a starting point.


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The Difference Between Blogs

I didn’t know this but WordPress.com and WordPress.org are two completely different things. I noticed I had some international hits on my blog so I wanted to upload Babelfish. NO CAN DO when you have a blog on the dot com site (which I do). WordPress.com doesn’t allow for plug ins. That kinda sucks because I don’t speak 35 different languages. Hmmm, gonna have to think about that one. As for more pics, I checked out a book from the library to familiarize myself with the DC Universe. So far its coming along well so stay tuned!