In today’s article, we will be talking about one of the most daunting questions every artist asks at some point in their career: how do I develop my own drawing style? I’m sure that by now you’ve probably realized that when you look at different pieces of art, each one has some type of quirk or addition that makes it unique to that artist. Whether it’s the way they draw certain things or the way they color in their art, every artist creates in different and unique ways in their own style. The bigger question is, how do you find your style? Hopefully, this article will give you some valuable information on how to do that.
Now, keep in mind that these steps don’t guarantee that you’ll find your art style in the blink of an eye, but instead it will give you a strong foundation to build on as you learn through drawing. A couple years later you’ll notice that your style has changed and refined itself for sure, but the transition will look natural because of the foundation you started with. So, let’s get to it!
- Choose three artists or art styles that you particularly enjoy.
First things first, you need to pick three artists or art styles that you really like. Make sure to think about this one and don’t just pick three random things for the sake of it! These things will eventually become key components in your art style, so make sure they’re things you really love. Try to make sure that any of the artists you may pick don’t have similar styles, the best thing to have in this step is variety. Think about artists you admire and art styles that you love.
- Choose an image for each of the three things you picked that best represents each of them.
Now, for each of the three things you picked, you’ll pick one thing that best represents it. For example, say you picked anime for an art style. Therefore, you’d pick your favorite anime picture. If you picked Vincent van Gogh as your favorite artist, then you would pick your favorite painting of his. In this step, it’s important that you only pick one picture, so take your time and pick images that you really love, and images that you would buy from others.
- Study each of the images you chose in step 2.
It’s suggested that in this step, have a pen and paper ready so you can write down your observations. In each of the images you chose in step 2, there’s one element in that image that makes the picture stand out and look amazing. Your job is to find out what that is and write it down. Study it and figure out how it works. There are no such thing as wrong observations, just make sure you’re specific. Instead of writing down “I like how they colored this picture.” figure out why you like how they colored it. Is it the color palette they used? Is it the way they shaded their picture?
- Combine the artistic elements you identified in step 3 together into an original drawing.
Finally! This is the last step. Now you need to combine the elements you found in step three into a single original drawing of your own. Just to be clear, you aren’t combining the subject matter from the images you chose, you’re combining the artistic elements you chose (coloring, line-art, etc). The subject matter is up to you, I’d recommend drawing something you’re familiar with. Here’s an example: Let’s say you always draw characters from popular TV shows, and you’re deciding to draw your favorite character. For your artistic elements, we’ll say you chose artist A’s line-art, artist B’s coloring style, and artist C’s shading techniques. Start off with a simple sketch of the character, the same way you’ve always drawn it. Next, when you do the line-art you’ll do it in the style of artist A from earlier. When it’s time to color you’ll use the color palettes of artist B, and the shading technique of artist C.
That’s all there is to it! As I said earlier, this isn’t a guaranteed way to suddenly find your own art style, since it does take time to refine. However, using this process will definitely give you a strong base to work off of and make unique art!