How to draw everything: my first class. feedback? encouragement?
I have completed my first SVSLearn course and mostly I feel humbled. Close to defeated honestly. I've considered myself an artist for most of my life and always dreamed of being an illustrator even though i had no idea what that might entail. The class was challenging and the section on perspective actually made me cry. I'm not sure I will ever master perspective and maybe I should set my sights on being a cartoonist rather than an illustrator. I'm 40 now and I know my age gives me more patience for doing hard things but I'm afraid my bad habits are too deeply ingrained and my brain isn't flexible enough to learn all the skills an illustrator needs.
Don't compare your journey to anyone else's. Yours is uniquely yours. If it takes you longer to grasp something, know that there are others out there that struggle with aspects that you don't. And there are really great, awesome, successful illustrators that aren't great at everything. And some who simply work around what they aren't good at and ignore what they can't do and seem to be fine.
Not all illustration adheres to the rules of perspective as stringently as it might seem. It's important to understand it, and suggest it logically, but unless your rendering of perspective is completely out of whack and distracting, no one is going to take a ruler to your work and slap your wrists. The trick is to understand when it's distracting and so wrong it decreases the quality of the experience. I struggle with perspective all the time and I will never master it. So I compose images that don't draw attention to my lack of skill.
At 52 years of age (53 in a couple weeks), I can empathize with the feeling that old habits die hard. But I see this in my own students all the time: they're growing up in a world that tells them that if they don't master things instantly they're no good and therefore shouldn't put in the time to develop their skills. And they drift around, trying to find their "passion" that comes easily. But it's actually the opposite: investment of time and commitment create the passion, not the other way around.
There are two kinds of skills: 1) Skill in using a tool that is taught and replicated easily (like using a hammer or a computer program or a band saw), and 2) Muscle-memory skills that are learned with repetition (like dance, sewing, singing, sports). Illustrating straddles both. Learning the tool is one thing. Practicing it over and over and over again is another. And you have to give yourself time to practice. That's the only way to break those old habits.
- The way you draw and illustrate is already different now that you've been exposed to new methods, tools and approaches. Now you have to experience the cognitive dissonance and discomfort of the juxtaposition between what you have learned and what you need to unlearn. And that takes time. Because you're older, it may take less time. But it will still take at least some time. Give yourself a break!! You've had one class!! It's daunting, yes, but you got this!! Of course it's a new world--but your worldly experience at your age should make it that much easier to wrap your head around. Keep going!!
Heather Boyd last edited by
@buildalittle @Coreyartus Has done such a terrific job so I just want to give short and simple encouragement. Perspective makes me cry too. Don't be so hard on yourself. Take what you've learned and apply it in some work, seek feedback for improvements and GO SLOW. Everyone has something they struggle with. Compare yourself with yourself a year ago, or five years ago. See where you've improved, and take those as wins.
If you'd like you can post your work, and get feedback and encouragement -we want to help you.
carlianne last edited by
@buildalittle I have cried many times on this journey I used to cry while painting all night for an assignment due in the morning.
I agree with what the others said but wanted to add that I try to look at those moments of just pure humbling frustration and aggravation as the proof that I'm learning. You are able to observe what is wrong before getting better at it so you have just leveled up from where you were before. Now you need to do the next step of continuing to practice it. But try doing a simpler step like just boxes before doing a building or doing a building before doing a car etc. Go back to something more simple and make sure you've really got it and then slowly add complexity.
I had a few years where I didn't feel that frustration and not only did I not grow as an artist but I lost some skill as well during that time.
Keep going you can do this!!!! ️️️
In the past weeks i have listened to a lot of Illustrations Podcast and one thing they all have in common is, that they talk a lot about Illustrators getting work, publishing books, winning prices coming late into the field of illustration.
It took a lot of pressure from me not beeing there at 32.
I agree with what @Coreyartus is saying. Don't be so hard on yourself.
And as someone who currently makes her driverlicence i must say, you always will be able to learn new things.
I whish you good luck!!!
sorry, i tried to attach the images last night but they didn't go. the one with feet is my "before" picture and the one with ink is from a reference photo. I tend to use a lot of reference photos when I'm trying for any kind of realism.
Thank you so much for all the kind encouragement. It's so comforting to know that other people struggle with perspective as well and I know I shouldn't rush myself so much.
@buildalittle this is my “after” image I used ink because I like it and I haven’t gotten around to ordering those shading markers
@carlianne that’s a really good point you made. I haven’t been challenging myself with art for the past few years. I’ve had other hard things going on and just use art for comfort and escape. So now I’m kind of in shock trying to build up art muscles again I guess. Thank you for that.
now you only have to try again and again.
I started to make a 10 poses figure drwing session my morning routine and after a week already i started to feel, like it gets easier.
Maybe you can come op with a little routine yourself?
I see a good start and i know it will get easier!!!
We all have our days where we feel we are unable to draw, come up with ideas or whatever, but we just need to keep going.
Heather Boyd last edited by Heather Boyd
@buildalittle I wanted to get back to you on the work you posted. I do notice that the pillar or post in the corner of the foreground does not meet up with the same perspective lines as the fence/wall. Also if we can see the top of the pillar/post we shouldn't be seeing the top of the roof and yet we are. Also place your VP further out, your house will look more natural. I'd also suggest keeping to pencil work until you get more confident with accuracy or "looks convincing" of the perspective work. That way you are less discouraged and you don't put so much time and work into the additional value work when your foundational structure still needs work. We can't cover up those mistakes as much as we think we can.