7 Different Types of Drawing Styles

By Jedida Okonkwo

Drawing is the framework for many other acts of creativity. It’s an art that’s useful and practiced by animators, architects, fashion designers, and artists. When you pick up a pencil and a paper, you expose yourself to endless possibilities to express yourself. And by using different drawing styles, it’s incredible how many ways you can choose to pass your message. 

In this article, we’ll be looking at a variety of drawing styles and how each of them produces unique final products. You’ll find that you are already familiar with some of these styles and have come across them while top professionals only practice others. By the end of this article, you should be able to decide on your preferred drawing style or pick up something new. Let’s begin!

What are the Different Types of Drawing Styles?

Every artist understands that different illustrations require a separate skillset. The drawing style also determines how the result of the drawing would turn out. There are various drawing styles for any artist to try out. Some drawing styles require adept attention to detail and patience, while others are achieved with loose and free strokes. 

The best artists are familiar with more than one type of drawing to help them take on more projects or show their skills. They may choose to specialize in a particular drawing style than others, but being able to draw other styles would make sure they know exactly what you are doing. A good example is Leonardo da Vinci, who drew the Monalisa. Still, he’s also known for his extensive collection of finished sketches and spontaneous doodles. 

Before you pick a personal style to focus on, make sure that you try out the different kinds of drawing. This way, you can determine which of them suits you best. The different types of drawing styles to try out include; 

Minimalist Drawing

Minimalist drawing involves recreating the most recognizable feature of a subject and has been around for ages. This drawing used to be crucial because conveying a message in this manner was based on the skills of the artist and materials used. 

A great example of minimalist drawings is cave drawings. These images were used to describe the lives of the cavemen, including their interaction with objects and other living things around them. These drawings were created with a few lines and some colors. The drawing style does not bear the same significance in today’s world, but the underlying principle remains the same. Now, there are even more materials to make the drawing more meaningful. 


Stippling involves the concept of making lines and shadings using multiple small dots. These small dots may or may not be the same color. This type of art has been around for quite some time and but not quite as popular.

Regardless of the result, the concept behind the entire drawing style is more straightforward than you thought. When you have multiple dots closely packed together, the shading will appear darker to the human eye. However, it can be a lot of work to get the correct number of dots needed for each image. Artists should be careful not to blindly fill their images with dots, as you would still want the dots in the image to be visible on inspection. If you get this drawing style wrongly, the image would appear like a single shape and not separate dots. 

Line Drawing

Lines are the foundation of all drawing styles and images. Line drawings are those that use contours to create pictures without necessarily shading any part of them. This type of drawing is a great idea for beginners and would help you develop your drawing skills. In this style, the result is a continuous image because the pen or pencil keeps going till the end of the picture. 

This type of drawing is many artists’ favorite because it creates stunning results. The general principle here is that you draw your image, whether it’s a portrait, object, landscape, or combination of different things, with an unbroken line. This drawing style has become popular because it helps artists build their speed and think on the go. It also helps beginners learn the simpler ways to draw their subject and make it as recognizable as possible. The knowledge gained here could easily be applied with other forms of drawing. 

Cross Contour

Cross contour is a drawing style that involves creating the illusion of a three-dimensional image. It has quickly become a popular type of drawing and is even taught in many schools. Cross contours are impressive and attractive pieces of art, but they are not simple to create. 

Someone interested in learning this drawing needs to be already familiar with drawing objects, shapes, and images in 2D. Now, all you have to do is outline a particular object, let’s say an apple or animal, and add some depth to the image. The principle of this type of drawing is to use different curved lines to create an illusion of depth. Cross contours create a more realistic picture than using simple shading tricks. 


Editorial credit: Suchat Manthong /

A caricature is another popular technique that sounds simple but can be a challenge for any artist. If you’re interested in learning something different, this is for you. 

This drawing style aims to create a subject, often a person or an animal, simply while exaggerating any identifiable features. An example would be to draw a huge nose or protruding ears to exaggerate the features of the subject being drawn. Recreating these larger-than-life features is no easy task, but you can draw inspiration from the characters of the subject. Just make sure to look deeply. 

Constant caricature practice would train you to see your subject better and identify its distinguishable features. For the best results, you may decide to draw your subject with thin lines initially. Then, start to make changes by increasing and reducing essential features of the image. 


Sketching may feel like an essential drawing practice that artists use in improving their skills, but it’s also another drawing style. Sketching is often overlooked as a drawing style because many people create it only when they want to practice. However, these sketches may turn out to be stunning images themselves. 

The goal of this drawing style is to draw the image in question faster than you usually would. Sketches are often created within a short period – between a few seconds and a few minutes, regardless of the image in question. 

If you become very good at sketching, you will realize that it allows you to draw more things in your sketchbook. The faster your speed and better your accuracy, the more you can record the beautiful world around you. You could always quickly draw an image of passers-by, vehicles on the street or even animals catch your attention. Your sketch would quickly recreate your object before you lose sight of it. You’ll also find out that as you get better and create cleaner lines, your sketches could turn out to be more important than your other pieces of art. This is because of the number of memories and emotions they contain.

Scribble Art

Everyone loves a good scribble drawing. This drawing style is used to create beautiful images that appear as they move on paper. The great thing about this type of drawing is that you are not limited to only mobile objects. It can be used to breathe life into anything, including a simple portrait. 

The principle behind this type of drawing may sound simple, but it’s far from that. An artist would require hours of practice to ensure that the image follows the pattern they want without creating a mess. To get this style, all you have to do is draw your work with similar pencil movements. It will be just like you are writing but without any letters. Small movements recreate detailed areas, while larger ones are meant to form the big picture. 

It’s a drawing style that relies on the artist’s speed and can feel quite unusual for those who are not used to it. For better results, make sure to practice pencil movements before getting started with your final image. 

In conclusion

We’ve touched on 7 different drawing styles in this article. Each of them has its techniques and its unique features. An artist should not get stuck with one drawing style but must also learn others to boost their creativity. Which of these drawing styles would you learn today? Have a go at it and pick up exciting skills.