• Tag Archives drawing
  • You Can Learn to Draw!

    Anyone Can Learn Basic Drawing

    I know what you are thinking, if you aren’t an artistic person naturally, you are thinking that no one can teach you how to draw.  However, I can tell you that anyone who can see can improve their basic drawing skills.  I’m not talking about necessarily becoming the next DaVinci, but rather becoming what I’d call, “drawing literate”.


    Drawing is a Skill

    Drawing is a skill.  It can be learned and practiced.  Artistic expression is more innate, natural, more something that just flows from within.  Think of this way, unless there is a severe disability, every person in school can learn basic writing skills, but not everyone is going to be the next novelist.  The fact that you don’t have the ability or desire to write the next great novel isn’t reason for you to not learn the basics of written language.

    Drawing is Communication

    I see drawing the same way, you might not have it in you to be the next great artist, but that isn’t reason to not even learn the basics of visual communication. I call it communication because drawing, pictures, basic figures, all of these things can be great tools to communicate with others.  The first written languages were series of pictures that told a story, and while we are not longer dependent on pictures alone, being able to sketch a basic idea can still really help to get information across.  Think of drawing a basic map for someone to find a place you are telling them about, sketching what you want a finished project to look like before starting, sketching out an illustration of your child’s math word problem, or playing Pictionary!  There have been many times when I’m trying to explain something to someone and feel they would understand better if drew them a picture, think about recounting a traffic accident, wouldn’t you probably sketch out the road and cars and use arrows to show what happened?

    There are Many Resources to Learn Drawing

    I can think of countless books that one can learn from, from the very basic “Drawing Textbook”, to the more in depth “Drawing on the Right Side of the Brain”, or one of my favorites, “Learn to Draw with Jon Gnagy“.  But books aren’t the only sources, the internet has free information, full courses, and videos.

    One video series that a beginner might find helpful is “Learn to Draw” by SchaeferArt.  His first video starts at the very beginning, with materials, and covers the very start of sketching and shading, later videos get more in depth on specifics of shading and form.

    So for today’s “Friday Feature” I am featuring the first in his Learn to Draw video series.

  • Friday Feature – Free Starry Night Over Seattle

    Its time for a Friday Feature on this blog, those are the posts where I Feature something of my choice on my blog. Sometimes the feature might be one of paintings I want to draw attention to, other times it might be a fellow artist that I want to give a shout out to, a guest blogger, or a great YouTube video I find.  Basically, whatever I want to put in the spotlight on that particular Friday.  This Friday, I am featuring a giveaway.

    Win a Free Print of Starry Night Over Seattle

    One of the most popular painting is Starry Night Over Seattle.  Originally, I was painting this for myself, but I posted some work in progress photos on social media and right away I got offers.  I sold that one before it was even finished, and someone asked me to paint another.  I wanted to change it up a little, so I made some minor changes and additions, and did a second version.  I still didn’t have one for myself, and I still don’t, but I do have prints.  The prints of this painting have sold better than any of my others have.

    For the month of February you have a chance to win a print of this painting.  To enter the drawing all you have to do is subscribe to this blog and then comment on this post telling me to enter you into the contest. That’s all there is to it.  I will put all of the entries in a hat, draw one out, and that reader wins an 8×10 print of this painting, you can choose whether you want the print to be signed or unsigned, or alternately, if you don’t want the 8×10 print, you can request a blank-inside greeting card with this image on it.

    Enter to win a free print of Starry Night Over Seattle Click To Tweet

    I’ll repeat those steps here, there’s just two steps.

    1. Subscribe to posts from this blog.
    2. Leave a comment on this post saying, “Enter me in the drawing.”
    You could win a print of this painting! To enter the contest, just subscribe to this blog, and leave a comment on this post saying, “Enter me in the drawing”.

  • Saturday Six-Minute Sketch, Clothes Pin

    The idea is practice to improve my drawing skills.

    The whole idea behind my six minute sketches were to improve my drawing skills by regular practice without placing a huger burden on my time.

    My six minute sketches lately have been taking longer and longer.  Last week it took me 13 minutes and I still really didn’t feel like I was “done”.  However, I made myself stop because I knew it was supposed to be a six-minute sketch, not a six-hour sketch.

    I realized that the problem was that I have been picking things that were too challenging for six minutes, and trying to squeeze in too much detail.  If I want to pick a more elaborate object, I need to leave out details, so which would it be?

    Keep it Simple

    I decided I should Keep it Simple for six-minute sketches, and if I want to post more complicated sketches, I can do that on a separate post.

    Finish the drawing in Six Minutes.

    The goal of course is to finish drawing the object in six minutes.  The simplicity of keeping it to six minutes means that I know I can almost always squeeze it into my week.

    I know if I’m going to do this, I need to select my object carefully

    Select a simple object to draw.

    So, with all that in mind, I for today I selected a very common, uncomplicated object:

    Photo of the clothespin I drew.
    This clothes pin should be simple enough to sketch in six minutes.

    One thing I noticed, was that because there was more than one light source there was also more than one shadow, at the time I noticed two, but now looking at the photo I see at least three. Well my sketch only got two, because that’s what I noticed at the time.

    Here is the sketch I did in six minutes:

    My six minute clothes pin sketch.
    I was able to complete this sketch in the time limit, and even put in two shadows like I saw in front of me, the second shadow is faint and hard to see, but it’s there.

    So there was my six-minute sketch for this week!