How to get better at drawing

So you want to improve your drawing skills but haven’t taken an art class before. Or maybe you have, but it’s been a long time, maybe since grade school. In this article, I am going to give you my top 10 tips to help you get better at drawing!

How to get better at drawing

(Disclaimer: Not all the images below are mine. One’s that I didn’t draw myself came from Pexels.com. Also, this post does contain affiliate links, which means that I make a small commission on any products you may purchase through links on this site at no extra charge to you. If you want to read more about this, click here to see my full disclaimer.)

10 Tips to help you improve your drawings

If you’ve never been to my website before, welcome! Anatomy of a Sketch is an art blog dedicated to helping you as an artist to improve your skills and get better at drawing with time and repetition.

These 10 tips for improving your art will show you types of practice, and give you exercises you can do every day (or every time you draw) that will help you learn how to get better at drawing.

Let’s look at these tips together!

1. Use Reference Photos

Don’t think that using a reference photo makes you a lesser artist.

Drawing from a reference can actually help you get better at drawing through observation, recognizing light sources, and having something to compare your work to.

I have drawn many of my best pictures from reference photos, and couldn’t have done so otherwise.

Rick Grimes - pen sketch from reference photo

Image I drew of Rick Grimes from the Walking Dead, based on the image above.

This example above is just one of the many images I have drawn based on a reference photo.

I believe that all art we create comes from our memory of the things we have seen or experienced over our lives, so don’t be hesitant to draw from a photo.

2. Draw the same thing over-and-over

The exact same thing.

Drawing something repeatedly can help you get better at drawing it, regardless if it’s something as complicated as eyes, a simple shape like a circle, or even just lines on a page.

Use repetition to hone your skills.

3. Practice Life Drawings

I can’t recommend life drawing enough if you want to improve your art skills.

Taking a life drawing class in college really helped when it came to drawing depth and movement. I don’t think my art would be the same today had I not taken that class.

practice life drawing

 

Drawing from life can help you create some beautiful images, as well as capture some poses you may not have thought to draw before.

Form Drawings

4. Draw for the sake of drawing

Drawing should be fun, and carefree.

Sometimes, especially for professional artists, drawing is work and needs to happen in a specific way, but the root of art should be self-expression and freeing.

If you want to learn how to get better at drawing, you should also be drawing for the sake of it.

5. Use multiple angles

A lot of artists, especially beginners, tend to get really good at drawing faces straight on.

Try drawing expressions, different angles, and multiple perspectives.

This also applies to full body pictures. If you feel comfortable drawing people straight on, try drawing a figure from the side, from behind, crouching down, laying on their back.

This image from my How to Draw Legs tutorial shows 3 different angles of legs.

Drawing from multiple angles can help us to better understand our subject.

How to draw legs from the calves down

6. Keep a Sketchbook

Like you’d keep a diary.

Draw on each page, starting at the beginning of the sketchbook and filling it at the last page. Put the date at the bottom of your sketches, and keep it as a timetable that you can track your progress with.

This is a fun way to see exactly where you started and see how far you’ve come with your art style.

 

7. Give a different medium a chance

Sometimes a change of pace is really what you need to enhance your skills.

Drawing with a different medium can really help shake things up if you’re feeling stuck with your artwork. If you typically use regular graphite pencils, try using a mechanical pencil, or even drawing with a Micron art pen instead of a pencil.

I personally love free drawing with Prismacolor markers just for the fun of it when I don’t know what to draw.

One of the best things you can do for your art is investing in a good set of art pencils, pens, and markers. (Read till the end to see my recommendations!)

Drawing with another medium

 

8. Draw patterns and shapes

Drawing isn’t just about drawing people but drawing shapes, scenery, forms, and patterns as well.

If you want to get better at drawing any of those, shapes and patterns are a great place to start.

Think about how beautiful Mandalas are, or floral doodles, or Zentangles. These are just patterns and shapes, or things drawn into patterns.

Try your hand at something fun and freeing like this, and don’t worry about the outcome.

9. Try drawing something different

If you feel like you excel at drawing people, try drawing animals.

If you haven’t tried your hand at drawing inanimate objects, try drawing something in your living room like a coffee cup, the couch, or collect a small collection of items together to draw.

 

how to draw animals, how to get better at drawing

10. Repetition

If you want to know how to get better at drawing, or anything in life, the answer is repetition.

As I talked about earlier with drawing the same things over and over, repetition is the key to mastery. Draw every day, and draw often. Practice every day with different mediums, whether it be digital or traditional.

“We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence then, is not an act, but a habit.”The Story of Philosophy

Suggested Material

Using new and different tools is always fun and may even help you to improve your art skills.

Prismacolor Handlettering Set

This is my favorite set of pens and markers right now!

One way to learn how to get better at drawing is to give yourself a myriad of drawing utensils, from pencils to pens, to markers and charcoal.

This set gives you a really great range of tools to use that will not only be fun but help you to improve.

Hand lettering set, Prismacolor markers

It has 13 items including a kneaded eraser and the tips and tricks insert. This set is amazing, and I’ve already made some great images with it, such as this image of Wanda, from the Marvel Cinematic Universe, below.

Wanda Maximoff drawing

 

Thank you for reading this article about how to get better at drawing! If you found this information helpful. please share it with your friends and family, Pin it on Pinterest, or share it on Facebook.

We have new art tutorials up monthly!

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Hi there! My name is Leah, and I am going to help you learn how to draw, and take your pictures to the next level. I have college-level experience with form drawing and multiple art classes under my belt that have helped me create these tutorials. Let's learn how to draw together!

Latest posts by Leah (see all)

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The following two tabs change content below.
Hi there! My name is Leah, and I am going to help you learn how to draw, and take your pictures to the next level. I have college-level experience with form drawing and multiple art classes under my belt that have helped me create these tutorials. Let's learn how to draw together!

Latest posts by Leah (see all)