This is just a smaller area of advice and things I've saved from tumblr and other places to keep it all in one place. They're pasted lists with links externally linked and sourced as best as can be; some tumblrs may be deleted so I'll be using my tumblr as the soruce for most of them.
If tumblr is down at the time you read this, then know that everything is sourced as best as it can be, except for crossposted here, since it was important enough to want to keep here.
draw what makes you happy
work with your anxiety not against it
if working in a sketchbook makes you anxious, draw on printer paper or index cards that way if that shit starts pissing you off you can literally toss it across the room
if one medium is giving you trouble try another
take a break from digital to work traditionally or vice versa
draw from reference
trace over reference with the intention of internalizing shapes
take what you love about other’s work and incorporate it into your own
if you need to work but are having trouble focusing, set a repeating timer (online-stopwatch.com)
dick around for ten minutes and then work for ten minutes
if the timer goes off and you still feel like working, keep working
be kind to yourself
draw when you can as much as you can
do NOT beat yourself up for not being able to work
working in pen or marker can help you overcome fear of permanent mistakes
it can also help you work quicker and looser
do your undersketch in blue pen/marker and go over it in black
make corrections with whiteout or white gel pen
when you want to draw but don’t know what to work on, start by drawing circles or other shapes
fill a page with nonsense doodles
warm up your wrists
do the bean exercise (youtube, Mike Toney)
just fill a page with beans
draw what makes you happy
Source to candyrhyhorns @ tumblr.com [my tumblr]
I know some of you look around, and you see all these artists making such beautiful art in time spans of like an hour or a few hours, and then you look at your work and you get so demoralized because you’re taking so long.
I’m here to tell you that that’s perfectly okay. You’re not other artists. You are you, and your work defines you. If you need to take 10 hours, or even days to complete your art piece, it is okay, because it’s yours. You’re doing your best to make your art what you want it to be, and just because you can’t do it in a few hours like other artists do, it doesn’t make the value of your work any less. In fact, your patience and perseverance is absolutely admirable.
Take your time. You’re using your hands to create something that you love. Don’t let the people around you that you see hinder that in any way. You will definitely get faster in time, but if you give up now, thinking that you’ll always be this slow when you make art, you’ll never reach that stage. This applies not only to art, but also to other skills that you’re trying to pick up.
So look at what you yourself are doing, instead of looking around at others. Don’t worry too much, and enjoy yourself in the process of creation and learning! :)
Source to candyrhyhorns @ tumblr.com [my tumblr]
I want you to look at your latest piece of art. okay? got it up?
Now think back a few years. If you were to see that piece of art back then how would you have reacted?
Now think back many years, as many as you want. How would you have reacted then?
you are the artist you wanted to be, right now.
Stop hating on yourself, and have fun. pestofresco:
i realized this few days ago and it changed me
arucelli: I think this is a really important message that every artist should know and appreciate.
No matter how much you may hate what you’re making right now, no matter how frustrated you may be about your lack of progress, the fact is, you’ve made progress. You’ve made more progress than you’re giving yourself credit for. And this is something that happens to every artist, no matter their skill level or years of experience.
Trust me when I say, the current you is someone that you would have looked up to years ago. And now you’re here, you’ve made a difference.
You’re your own hero. Remember that.
Sourced to Candyrhyhorns @ tumblr.com
- take. BREAKS. as often as you need to. stop when you gotta. if you try to dig into tomorrow’s spoons to finish something, trust me, you’re going to hate yourself and whatever you’re working on later
- if you really want to, you CAN draw (or paint, or sculpt, or craft etc.) every day
- everything counts. everything. can’t draw for more than 20 minutes today? you drew. less than 5? you drew. take a pencil and draw three different circles on a sticky note. you drew. lay out your arm and trace whatever comes to mind with you finger. everything counts.
- if you drew SOMETHING today, you gained more experience than someone who did not
- draw whatever you want
- reward yourself for it
- don’t get so wrapped up in something that you forget to eat, drink water or sleep please. if you can’t make yourself care about what it does to your body, remember it WILL affect your productivity, which will lead to Bad Times, again, trust me
- you are SOMEONE’S art goals
- your art is good
- “this person doesn’t know me or my art, how do they know it’s good-” shh. doesn’t matter. its good
Sourced to Candyrhyhorns @ tumblr.com
- don’t draw your sketches on white, especially if your brush is black. white is hard to draw on. change it to grey. trust me on this.
- if a sketch is almost there but not quite try mirroring it horizontally. the issues will be way easier to spot.
-if inking isnt your thing but you want outlines just paint your color over the sketch lines, then do the ink lines last.
- if you have lots of ideas but no patience with details like myself take to tiny tiny thumbnails. like im talking barely bigger than your thumb. it forces you to look at the whole picture and not just the details.
- if tiny doesnt work/you like detailing go opposite. draw REALLY huge and work your way through.
Sourced to Candyrhyhorns @ tumblr.com
if you draw in pencil and have a habit of erasing all of your mistakes, try drawing in pen or marker. i know it’s scary but it’ll help in the long run (i’m speaking from experience)
try different methods and mediums but don’t worry about mastering any of them, just have fun
if you’re not rich, buy art supplies from the dollar store, not the art store (seriously. i go through a sketchbook about once a month and i’d rather spend $4 on one than $15)
there’s no wrong way to learn. you can copy other people’s art if you want to, just don’t post it
DO NOT worry about having a consistent style. do not. just draw however you want
if you want to make original characters then do it. don’t worry about if they’re original, or a good design, or if they have an accompanying story. make sonic ocs. do it. it’s fun and it’s not hurting anyone
try not to kill your back. stand up and stretch once in a while
make a folder and save all of your favorite arts for inspiration
draw from life. draw your dog. draw your teachers. draw your desk. draw your own hands (seriously that’s the best way to get better at drawing hands)
in general, drawing from life or a photo is better than drawing from a diagram draw whatever you want. draw youtubers if you like youtubers. draw undertale if you like undertale. when i was a kid i drew nothing but shadow the hedgehog and horses. everyone deserves to draw what they want without being mocked, and if people start making fun of you, block them and keep drawing
don’t expect to get any notes at first. don’t let it discourage you. if you want validation go show your art to your mom or your friends or your teacher or your grandma
take breaks, but don’t give up.
Sourced to candyrhyhorns @ tumblr.com
do not start ur character design by doing a full, refined turnaround/model sheet.
like. everyone in my childrens book il class is fuckin doing this even though most of them are illustration majors and its a huge mistake (our prof literally warned them against this, and YET)
any time you design a character, start by not caring. by just doing what feels right. dont settle on the first thing; play around. and then draw your character a shitload of times before u start a ref sheet
dont finish anything, just. do super fast sketches of them over and over and over. fill up a page or two. as you draw them theyll evolve. that will happen whether your sketch it out at the beginning or jump right into a final draft, and lemme tell u, u do NOT want ur character evolving and changing AFTER ur final draft. u want to get that out of the way early so u can get a decently consistent finished product
then when you go to do your model sheet you will already be able to keep your character on model without it bc youve drawn them a shitload of times. then it wont be “struggling to draw the character the same every time” itll just be “this is what the character looks like and i could draw them with my eyes closed bc of muscle memory”
dont just jump in and be like “shit i gotta have this full complex polished thing right out of the gate!” like. in the beginning, Do Not Work Hard. play. play a lot. and THEN do a refined drawing. your refined drawing will look way better, too, bc by then youll be completely comfortable with your design
its just a super bad idea to present a character as “heres a ref sheet” as soon as you have a concept. your concept will evolve and u have to let it, or else ur designs will look rushed/bad and your drawing will looks stiff and uncomfortable bc u can only draw ur character at a ¾ths view in a particular pose bc youve drawn them twice in ur entire life
Source @candyrhyhorns @ tumblr
the best way to get better at art is to practice. there is no special trick to improving, no secret method. practice makes perfect is a tired old saying that im sure you dont want to hear but unfortunately, its true.
draw as much as you are able to. i wont say draw every day!!! because i know that there are folks that dont have this sort of luxury, whether it be because of physical or mental restrictions, or simply because they dont have time. draw whenever you can and have the strength to. try not to be too upset if you miss a day or a week or even months. shit happens, do the best you are able to.
if you get bored or stuck, try another way. change mediums if you can, flip the canvas, do something weird that you wouldnt normally do. sometimes this is the best way to un-stick yourself from art block.
dont be afraid to ask for help. this is so important! its ok to ask for assistance from other artists you admire (given that they have time to give pointers.) even if asking for help is straight up asking for a redline of your work, its ok to ask for it. improvement doesnt come without outside assistance, more often than not.
references are 100% a legitimate resource. i’m not really sure where the idea came from that real artists dont use references, but its not true. every renaissance painter used references in the form of in-house models. disney artists use references of animals and people to correctly model and then correctly exaggerate their designs. you cant learn to draw the world around you without actually studying it. use references, even if its just google searching.
your art is not an island. you will pick up styles from other people like tape picks up pet hair. its inevitable, and its not something that should be seen as a negative. artists inspire other artists. use your discretion, and study what you like about another artist’s work. every artist’s style is a mashup of a hundred other artists. its ok, experiment.
youre not going to make masterpieces all the time. youre gonna suck more often than not. but youre putting effort into something you enjoy and in the process you are getting better, slowly but surely. you arent going to see your stuff improve overnight, be patient.
please be kind to yourself. you are making a unique form of artistic expression, regardless whether you see it that way or not. youre doing fine, please keep going and pat yourself on the back for getting this far.
Source @ candyrhyhorns at tumblr
u can pursue a completely different career and paint pictures for urself on sundays, write ur own songs on the bus, whittle a thousand little sculptures that dont look like anything.
if the only fucking artistic thing u do in ur entire life is make little rabbits out of pipe cleaners just for urself bc u enjoy it, that is art that is worth being made. there is inherent value to joy Sourced to Candyrhyhorns
its okay to draw the same thing over and over
its okay to draw something you feel only you enjoy (ps this is not true; plenty of people enjoy the same thing or enjoy seeing you enjoy yourself)
its okay to draw something and not finish it
its okay to draw without knowing what you want it to look like
its okay to draw
“good enough” and “fuck it”
“good enough” is when you are working on something and are happy with most of it but can live with a few imperfections, useful when needing to move on from sketch to inking/coloring or what have you.
“fuck it” is when you absolutely hate what you’re doing every step of the way but you post it anyways, very useful during art blocks.
both are useful to help you move on and not obsess over making it perfect, because art is anything but perfect, even photo realistic artists probably see imperfections that someone else might not catch
these can also be applied to other things in life
One of the big realisations I remember having as an artist is that the art you enjoy looking at isn't necessarily going to be the type of art you enjoy *making*. It was confronting, but ultimately very freeing! Has anyone else experienced this? How did it change your career?
Studying art isn't something you do once and then you're good at art forever.
It's more like going to the gym: you have to build your strength, and then you have to maintain it by continuing to go to the gym.
We're all busy, but to keep improving you've got to keep studying.
Something to repeat to yourself in the shower:
My stories are not for everyone.
My stories will bore some readers. Some readers will hate them. Some won’t understand, won’t connect the dots, won’t relate to the characters. Some won’t because they can’t, some won’t because they don’t want to, but most won’t simple because my stories just aren’t for them.
My stories aren’t for everyone.
My stories are for me.
And they’re for the readers who will love them. They’re for the reader who have already loved them. For the readers who will see what I see in them and feel the characters and the world the way I do. They’re for the readers who wanted these stories before they even knew they existed. They’re for the readers they’ll make smile, the readers they’ll stick with, and the readers they’ll save.
And just because my stories aren’t for everyone doesn’t make them worth any less to the people they are for.
Not everyone likes butterflies. Not everyone likes spiders. But the people who love those creatures more than anything else would lose a part of themselves if they didn’t exist.
So no, my stories are not for everyone. But that doesn’t matter.
Because they’re for someone, and to that someone, they’re irreplaceable.
Do's and Don'ts: Styles
Be kind to yourself - shannonarts, tumblr
How to be an artist.
Art is a Cycle
This is why I say to watch Kiki's delivery Service
You've seen holy shit! two cakes! so now try my dumb life - sdamned @ twitter
On art styles
Talent is bullshit
Bob Ross is Good
Do not ever stop making art because someone doesn't like it