sorry if you were asked this before but do u have any tips on avoiding same facing? i like how diverse you draw everyone! i've noticed when i draw everyone looks the same save for the eyes. i'm not sure how to break this bad habit..
Great question! I’m certainly learning myself and I still have a long way to go with design, but here are some tips based on what I know so far about designing diverse characters. Let me demonstrate with the colorful and varied cast of Yowapeda.
I like to start big by asking myself what overall shape a character’s face would have. Thinking in shapes makes it easier to add variety. There’s a language about characters in shapes. Round shapes are coded for cuteness, angular and pointed shapes may code for intensity and brashness, etc.
I also try to repeat the shape throughout the design. It creates good unity.
General realism proportions call for rigid rules of feature positions, but after a certain point, it’s fun to mess with them and really push a face more. Especially after you learn about proportions, try exaggerating them or positioning them with purpose on a face.
What I always keep in mind while designing or interpreting a face is the character behind that face. I try to make a face that most efficiently gets across the POINT of the character. It helps to associate characters with animals, objects, etc, since it will inform your design and make it more distinguishable.
I’m sorry I kinda just drew at you and didn’t explain much but I hope you understand somewhat?
1) In school, I took standard classes. They didn’t really help so much as give me more time to draw which was always nice. I did take a portfolio building class with a teacher starting Junior year for RISD. That was really helpful in securing a foundation for traditional painting and drawing. It translated into my work. Later, I found my own resources and began to experiment with stylization and nontraditional practicing, but I feel like that base in realism and knowing how to copy is very important.
2) The issue isn’t in the style itself. I can’t speak for other art schools, but there’s often this misconception that Calarts doesn’t like an anime/manga influenced style or favors a “western/disney” style over that, but there’s mounting evidence towards the contrary. Styles influenced off of Japanese animation can be JUST as varied as western styles. They are incredible and intricate like everything else. The issue is really getting a good foundation. Understanding the style and manipulating it correctly makes it impressive, not what kind of style it is.
I would say if you want to apply to Calarts, take a look at the portfolio requirements and start practicing for that. A good sketchbook and figure drawing are maintained by a heavy load of constant drawing. Do a ton of life drawing for sure since the major is based around character movement and interaction. Get out there and get influenced by a ton of artists, animation, whatever you can get your hands on. Knowing who you’re influenced by and drawing from that vast library is always a boost.
In hindsight, I barely made it tbh, I barely could handle the stress and was on a pretty constant verge of breaking down especially near the end. That doesn’t sound very promising but I think harnessing the stress into frenzied sessions of drawing was certainly productive. I think being nervous helped me a lot in staying on track and driving myself to produce as much art as I could before the deadline. I didn’t really feel very good during the application process but it was worth it. I was always super insecure that my work wasn’t calarts worthy either, but I just forced myself to not think about the judgement and produce stuff that I enjoyed the most out of what was required. I think customizing the experience to fit your goals is also important in the application process.
sorry to bother you! i have a question about your sketchbook; when you did observational drawings, did you draw the lines and fill in color all in the same sitting? or would you do the lines and then color the pages later? :o
depends if i had the resources that time. If i wanted to use my watercolors but they were at home i tried my best to wait until later to color. Otherwise I try to get stuff done asap.
sorry if you've already answered this but do you have any tips on figure drawing composition?? like how to fill up the whole page? i always end up drawing the figure too small. thanks!
Ohhh I always had the problem of drawing the figure too big lmao. It still happens which you know, you can only get more consistent with experience but what helps is to kind of map out the positions of where everything is lightly before you go in with final lines.
I wanted to start learning anatomy but I don't know what to do first. What did you start out with? Thanks!
I started out with deviantart tutorials, looking at how other artists drew muscles and anatomy because copying stylized stuff is easier than the real thing. A lot of my current anatomy knowlege comes from figure drawing books, observing more lifelike drawings by more professional artists, as well as actual life drawing. I guess just grabbing whatever information I get from looking at other art as possible. Sometimes I pretend to be certain artists when I draw and I guess that helps.
Do you have a DeviantArt? I'm trying to gauge if DeviantArt is still a worthwhile outlet for artwork. What's your opinion on DevArt?
I have one. I guess it wouldn’t hurt to link it (a ton of old stuff). It’s SUPER inactive.
My opinion on dA is that it was a great place to start for me (wistful flashbacks to my preteen days), and it was really my first art site and inspired me to draw a lot more. I don’t regret my time on deviantART. I connected with a lot of cool people there! (many of them have since moved to tumblr). I also enjoyed the art memes and collaborative activities, and the groups (when they started out).
However, in hindsight it was really hard to get exposure (REALLY hard) and the only way to find cool art was to look through what was popular or go deviant-hopping which was basically going through galleries of the friends of people I watched which gave me a pool of really similar styles. It was much more tedious to find stuff that inspired me. I think my style would have been fundamentally different and stagnant if I stuck with dA. It’s just so much easier to find a variety and abundance of art and inspiration on tumblr, and I think inspiration from other sources is what fundamentally drives my direction in art.
dA is a great place to host a cohesive gallery though. There are several people who have found success through dA. I just feel it’s much more difficult than tumblr. It’s also going out of style imo, and their commercial sector is terrible.
hi tori! i was wondering what kind of ink pens you used to draw the people in your sketchbook? do you have any recommendations for pens that work well with watercolor washes ;3;
The main ones I used were the Pilot G2 (not waterproof) and the Pentel Pocket Brush (water resistant). I also used microns (waterproof) but I’ve since stopped since they wear down easily.
If you want pens that do well with washes, you’ll be looking for water resistant or waterproof inks. A friend recommended me Uniball Vision Elites, which do well. The Pentel Pocket brush also works if you want thicker lines. There are also plenty of inkwells that are waterproof if you like trying out dip pens or brush inking.
I really like your art! Where do you get inspiration from or who inspires you?
Thanks! I did an Influence Map quite a while ago but my current main inspirations shift around a ton (I’m inspired by a ton of art but it would take a day and a half to say it all). Here’s a giant list of current inspos under the cut (may have overlap with the influence map).
Generally, I’m influenced by really cool and smart styles, really well rendered stuff, storytelling, character acting and interaction, as well as the passion and drive of artists themselves towards their goals >v<. Not all my influences are visual based either.
Good question! My knowledge of anatomy comes from all sorts of places. Originally it came from copying from other artists and looking at online tutorials. I found it most productive later when copying from master artists who had learned how to correctly express anatomy. It’s helpful to get information about anatomy before testing it out yourself in life drawing. I’m not exactly sure what the second part of your message is asking about, but I think life drawing and studying from books should work together. Over time, you can find things yourself in live models that others haven’t, which you can use yourself to make a personal style.
You don’t have to do classic figure drawing to get good at drawing people. An alternative is to go somewhere where there’s a lot of people. Go to the zoo if you want to see a lot of excited kids (and animals), the coffee shop, the gym, every location has its own set of unique people and actions. The poses will be fleeting so you can try discreetly taking pictures (don’t share them) and draw from those if you want to go beyond quicker poses. You can also ask family members to lay down or do something stationary for a period of time while you draw them. If you want to see anatomy better in nude models, try getting a few books with figure drawing examples and copying from those.
do you have any tips for setting up/offering art commissions?
TBH I’m the last person you should ask for this because I rarely get commissions when I offer them BUT I’d say rule of thumb: don’t underprice your art, even if you think you don’t draw very well. The audience you attract with your prices tend to value your art at those prices.
It’s hard to judge the value of a piece of art, but if you want to start out try asking yourself how much you want to be paid per hour for drawing something, and price accordingly to how long it takes to finish something, so you have a minimum starting point. As you get more experience doing commissions you should probably raise/adjust accordingly.
Also, try having some kind of focus when selling your art. Offering way too many options clutters up the post, and doesn’t give people a good idea of your strengths as an artist. Sell a style, something that makes you stand out.
Other tips: make the post easy to read, look at other people’s commission posts for reference. Good luck!