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How to improve my drawing skills - Creative lesons and tips

Updated on March 1, 2015

How to improve drawing skills - Drawing is Observing.

The best way to improve your drawing skills is to scrutinize drawings made by other artists. The classics and the modern masters, including contemporary art.

You can do so on several ways. You can google the artists you know, and collect the drawings you find on the internet. A second option is to buy postcards in museum shops, unfortunately most of the postcards you find there are reproductions of paintings. An other option is to buy books about drawings.

In the end, the more you look at drawings the more you find yourself attracted to the arts of drawing

Well, yes of course the best thing is to go to a Museum or Gallery to experience a drawing, seeing it in real life and not as a reproduction.

Piet Modrian - Chrysanthemum, 1908â09. Charcoal on paper
Piet Modrian - Chrysanthemum, 1908â09. Charcoal on paper

Drawing with your eyes

observing is the key

In the end, it's simple. If you want to learn to draw. You have to practice.To practice, to practice.... You don't need tons of books with instructions.

Learning to draw is not the same as learning a language. It's not about memorizing vocabulary and grammer. No, you simply have to draw a lot. And to enjoy it.

If I look at my own drawing book collection, I have a few books about the technical aspects of drawing. a book about perspective and one about the human body, but I bought these ages ago, and to be honest hardly use them. But you can buy them for a tenner and can come in handy in times.

But my bookshelves are mainly filed with drawing books which contain photos of drawings from artists. From the old masters to the modern art to the contemporary art.

By looking at art, you become inspired, and if you're are as fanatic about drawings as I am, then you surely already have a lot of drawing books.

Besides buying books about drawings, I collect postcards as well, but unfortunately, postcards with drawings are not easy to get your hands on. Most of the art postcards printed are about paintings. You will find the Mona Lisa, but you won't find many drawings from Leonardo Da Vinci (yes of course you find the famous human body in the circle - on t-shirts,caps,coffee mugs etc.)


Water-Soluble Pastels

Caran d'Ache Classic Neocolor II Water-Soluble Pastels, 30 Colors
Caran d'Ache Classic Neocolor II Water-Soluble Pastels, 30 Colors

Water Soluble sticks are a great way to expand tyour drawing and watercolor technique. You paint and draw at the same time. You can use the water Soluble Patels in many ways. dipping them in water and draw or draw on a wet surface. It really improves your drawing.


An amazing book about modern and classic drawings.

Drawing Book: A Survey Of Drawing: The Primary Means Of Expression
Drawing Book: A Survey Of Drawing: The Primary Means Of Expression

A Survey of Drawing is a wonderful book full of high quality prints. Drawings from Matisse,Picasso but also Durer and Marlene Dumas. It shows what drawing is about and is an great inspiration for everybody who is interested in art.


My Precious drawing picture books

inspirational and uplifting

There are several art books who are really precious for me. One is "Drawing Book: A Survey Of Drawing: The Primary Means Of Expression" by Tania Kovats, an other one is a book called"Drawing the Line: Reappraising Drawing Past and Present" by Michael Craig-Martin.

Both books contains drawings selected by the artists. Not by style or fashion but by artistic insight in what drawing is all about.

You wander through the ages, looking at a drawing from Holbein on the left page and on the right you see a drawing from Matisse.

Both books gives you an insight in what drawing can be.

It's inspiring to see pictures of Holbein, Degas and Marlene Dumas together in one book. To me the cave paintings / drawings are just as relevant and interesting as the sketches and drawings of let's say Gerhard Richter.

Details Versus Vague Area - the Strength of a "half Finished" Drawing

leonardo da vinci - female head - la - scapigliata -1508
leonardo da vinci - female head - la - scapigliata -1508

Drawing tips: The art of suggestion.

One technique you can use is to create a contrast in density. What I mean by this is that in one part of the drawing you go like hell, and do a lot of detailing and on an other part of the drawing you just let it go and keep it in a sketchy stadium.

This drawing from Leonardo da Vinci for instance is a beautifully sensitive drawing because Leonardo chose to draw certain parts exceptional detailed and other parts like the hair and shoulder vague. The drawing on itself would be boring if it was completed. If the hair and the shoulders whereas well drawn with precision.

You can use this technique in your own drawings as well. Make for instance a drawing in which the center of the activity and the details are at the edge of the drawing, let the middle of the drawing open. See what it brings. I'll bet it will be an exciting and stunning drawing.

Famous drawing by Leonardo da Vinci

A master work by Leonardo da vinci. A face with a strong expression. The art of suggestion.
A master work by Leonardo da vinci. A face with a strong expression. The art of suggestion.
Don Quixote by Dali
Don Quixote by Dali

To enhance your drawing technique, variation is an important factor.

The Key to an interesting drawing

Variation is probably the most important thing in your drawing. Whatever you draw, may it be portraits,landscapes,doodles or abstract configurations, variation is the key to a successful drawing. Think about all the things you can do. Use a verity of materials when making the drawing. Combine veltpen with charcoal, ballpoint with watercolour - simply experiment and don't be afraid to do the something you haven't done before. It only increases the fun.

A drawing with a variation in shades and types of lines makes it more pleasing and interesting to look at as well. The drawing won't be boring that's for sure. It gives it more power and meaning. Using different shapes can be a help to. Round shapes, angular ones, thick and heavy forms versus light and thin forms. Just think about the contrast in light, Form, meaning, expression and use them in your drawings.

I'm sure the drawings you will make will be more interesting to look at.

Have Fun

Erasing the Kooning - By Robert Rauschenberg

To me Robert Rauschenberg is brilliant artist, if you didn't know him, check him out. He's done tons of creative art work. Crossing all kinds of art disciplines.

Do you have a favourite artist today ?

The forests have ears and the fields have eyes.
The forests have ears and the fields have eyes. | Source

What's your favourite artist ? Mine is Sigmar Polke.

My fafourite artist is ?

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If you have any drawing tips, don't hesitate. - and scrible it down.

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