Let’s get started with Part 1 — Where to start at.
And that is a good question. Picking the right starting point is one of the most important and crucial steps you can take to quickly becoming a good artist. Yes, even if you pick the wrong path, you can still become an awesome artist, but it’s just going to take longer and be more painful than it should have been.
However, this is a lot easier said than done. For a complete beginner, everything is unknown territory and there are many (and I mean many) places to start at. It’s like you’re thrown into an endless hallway of doors and asked to pick the best one. It’s not only impossible, but also confusing and frustrating.
So, where is a good starting point — that magic doorway to success? Well, for most people, it seems likes the answer is — the face.
And I totally understand that. It’s the most visible and recognizable part of our body, it should be our top priority… I mean, really, who wouldn’t spend the most time developing that part of the body. It’s beautiful, elegant, and delicate. It’s the part that gives a character life, energy, and meaning…
But I have to disagree with that starting point. I believe the face is one of the worst, if not worst, starting points you can pick as a beginner.
So, why do I think that? Simply put — it’s too hard for the beginner! (resulting in the dreaded burnout)
As with anything in life, drawing takes a lot of time and patience. You need to take it slowly one step at a time.
Take evolution for example. We just didn’t go from a single cell organism straight through to a human. No, we had to go through several stages of evolution before we got to the point where we are today. An artist must do the same. You can’t just start anywhere, and by all means, please don’t start at the end.
If I was to recommend one place to start (the very best place to start), it wouldn’t even be a part of the human body. No, I’d definitely tell you to stay away from that. Instead, I’d tell you to start with primitives. You know, the cool mathematical things like cubes, spheres, and cylinders — awesome, right?
All sarcasm aside there are many, many benefits for starting out here.
- First, it will get you thinking and drawing in 3d. Because even though the canvas is 2D, the thing you are drawing is still 3D. Thus, if your mind isn’t thinking in those terms, then your drawings are going to reflect that. They’re going to be 2 dimensional and flat.
- Second, it will also teach you about volume and space. Primitives can provide you with a simple and easy way to layout your entire scene in a realistic and accurate fashion. If you are able to draw bounding boxes for every one of your objects before you start drawing any details, I can almost guarantee your end results will look better. Why? Because that division of space will let you focus on detailing a small aspect of the picture rather than the whole (i.e. don’t multitask).
- Third, it’s just easier to draw primitives than it is humans. And that alone makes it a better starting point. Heck, most people learn to draw primitives in their geometry class (if they weren’t sleeping like me). And if you’re having trouble drawing primitives, then you’re definitely going to struggle with the human body.
And that’s it for this video. Basically, just keep it simple, don’t bite off more than you can chew, and you should do fine.
Thanks for watching.
If you have any questions, comments, or suggestions — anything at all — please feel free to post them on my webpage at drawingmangacharacters.com or on any of my social sites. If you like what you’ve saw and don’t want to miss another episode, please subscribe to this channel or follow me on Facebook, Twitter, or Google. Again, thanks so much for watching, and have a great time drawing!