Why is Drawing So Hard?
August 18, 2021
- Do you struggle to create the art you have in your head?
- Do you want to start drawing but don’t know where to begin?
Art is subjective and everyone has their own skills when it comes to creating art. However, there are some things you can do to improve your drawing skills, and therefore improve the quality of your art.
Let’s look at 7 steps you can follow to make drawing a bit easier.
1. Find your niche
The first step to creating art that you love, is figuring out what kind of art that is. There is a world of art out there, with many different genres. What is “good’ in art is largely dependent on the genre in which it exists. To be good at drawing, then, depends largely on what you are drawing, and how.
Finding your niche will save you a lot of time being bogged down in things that don’t interest you, or for which your skills aren’t best suited. There’s no point spending a lot of time being frustrated while attempting to draw portraits and still life when you might enjoy more Abstract and Expressionist takes on drawing.
The best way to find out what you want to draw is to take in as much art as you can. Find out what you like by exploring, reading, visiting galleries, looking online, checking out museums, reading comics, connecting on social media. Find out what you love before you start, and you will save a lot of time trying to fit into a box not meant for you & thats why is drawing so hard?
Once you’ve figured out what you’d quite like to draw, take in as much of that thing/person/place as possible.
The best way to capture the essence of something in a drawing is to understand how it is shaped and it relates in proportion to the rest of the world.
Even if you are going to be drawing more Abstract forms of things, or if you are going to be animating or drawing cartoons, the structure and proportion of things are still important. To play with form and to subvert it in an artistic way, you need to understand the form in the first place. To make nonsense you must make sense first.
If you want to draw trees, go out and look at trees. All types of trees. Figure out their coloring, their shape, how they blow in the wind. Look at them from all different angles, and in all different seasons.
Being part of the world is the best way to capture the world.
Get a sketchbook and bring it with you everywhere you go. This means you can make doodles on the spot when something catches your eye. Make a note of anything that might help you draw it again down the line.
Also, take photos or videos if this will help you as a future reference.
3. Take Classes and Read Books
Nowadays we have more access to content than ever before. There is an abundance of resources online to help you with your drawing and your art. No matter why is drawing so hard & what kind of drawing you want to be good at, there will be a video, e-book or class dedicated to it.
A quick Skillshare search for the keyword “drawing” brings up 5673 results in an instant.
There are classes with daily practice exercises, long-term projects, and a whole range of teachers and genres.
You can learn anything you want to.
For completely free resources, there are also plenty of YouTube videos that will help you develop and hone your drawing skills. Again, for any genre.
You can learn any drawing style from Anime to Urban sketching.
Don’t forget about physical books too. Head down to your local library and check out a whole history of art books for free. Looking at as many different sources and references as possible will help you figure out your own style why is drawing so hard. (Just remember to do any doodles on your sketchbook and not the library books…)
4. Start with the Basics
If you are finding drawing difficult, it might be that you’re over-complicating things for yourself, or that you’re trying to move too fast. Keep things simple and start with the basics of drawing and work your way up from there.
No one masters a skill overnight, and it’s important to not be too down on yourself when you’re just starting out why is drawing so hard.
Getting the basics down is a big step, and you can be proud of yourself for every step in drawing that you make.
Here are some ways to get started with the basics:
- Draw some 2D shapes: Start by simply drawing some easy 2D shapes like squares, rectangles, stars, and circles. Use these as a test for the materials and colors you’re trying out, and as a practice in proportions and linework. Start working on getting multiple shapes the same size as each other and working without rulers or other instruments. Have fun with it and practice as much as possible.
- Move onto 3d shapes: Once you’ve mastered 2d shapes, it’s time to move to the next level: 3d. Again, just have some fun playing about with all different types of shapes and try and work on their proportions. Figuring out the basics of 2d and 3d shapes will help you start to build drawings around them and will keep the basis of every drawing simple and structured.
- Draw what you see: Going back to earlier steps in this blog, use the observation of the world around you to get started with some simple drawings. Draw the things you see around you and try not to get too bogged down in whether they are any “good” or not yet… just capture what you see. Draw your shoes, your coffee mug, your dog. Anything! Just get started putting pencil to paper and drawing. Inspiration can come from anywhere. Focus on basic lines and shapes to start with and build up texture and detail later when you’re ready.
- Draw for fun: Take the pressure off yourself and your art and just draw for fun. Drawing anything you want, in any style you want, and fill your sketchbook with it. Practicing will get you much further than being constantly critical of yourself, especially when you’re just starting out. The more you draw, the more you’ll improve. And the more fun you have, the more you’ll motivate yourself to keep drawing.
Now that you’ve got some basics down, it’s time to experiment with your art.
This includes using and trying different types of drawing materials and seeing what fits you best.
The most common drawing materials for beginners are:
- A sketchbook
- Graphite pencils
- Watercolour or acrylic paints
- Canvas paper pad
And, more and more commonly, digital materials such as:
- iPads and tablets
- tablet pencils, such as an Apple pencil
- Affinity Photo
… and many more.
If painting feels too difficult for you, it might be that you would prefer drawing with graphite pencils. If drawing, erasing, and sharpening with physical materials isn’t going great, maybe digital creating is for you.
There’s a world of choices out there, and it’s important to give as many styles and materials a go to see what works best for you.
It’s also important to be aware that using materials might not come naturally straight away.
Even holding a drawing pencil and positioning it in your hand will be different from how you are accustomed to holding a writing pen or pencil.
Using a tablet pen will feel different than using an ink pen.
Give yourself some time to practice, experiment, and get used to using the materials you like and don’t get discouraged if it feels a bit different at the beginning.
If you’re really struggling, try some of the online resources we’ve discussed to check out some tips from people with more experience with the specific material you’re after.
6. Practice Makes Perfect
The key to mastering any skill will always be practice.
Becoming better at drawing means drawing.
Every day if possible.
Going back to an earlier point, having a sketchbook that you keep on you at all times will be an infinitely helpful resource. Drawing things/people/places whenever you see them and whenever inspiration strikes will keep you from losing motivation and losing track.
Many classes recommend daily activities for drawing, and even if you are not taking one, making yourself your own schedule of daily practice will be helpful.
Making yourself draw something every day, no matter how “good” it is, will keep you progressing steadily over time.
And having a sketchbook where you do all of this will mean you can easily track your progress and see how far you’ve come.
In time you will burn through your sketchbook and need another. And then another.
Then you will have a whole catalogue of your own art progressing and changing over time.
This is a great way to keep yourself both accountable and motivated to continue.
7. Join a Community
Social media can be a good and a bad thing when it comes to improving your art skills.
On the one hand, it can be a stick to beat yourself with, by looking at other people’s art and comparing yourself to them. Comparing yourself to people with years of experience ahead of you and then feeling bad about your art will get you nowhere. Your art is individual to you and the only person you have to beat is your past self.
Follower count, likes, and comment numbers don’t really mean anything when it comes to the value of art and drawing.
Don’t get bogged down in things like this, focus your energy on yourself and how you can constantly improve and better your drawing.
That’s where the other side of social media and online communities comes into play.
Being in a space (be it digital or in real life) where you can learn tips and tricks from other artists with more experience is a worthwhile experience for any artist starting out.
Being around other people who are drawing and trying to improve will also help to keep you motivated and inspired long-term
It’s a marathon, not a sprint.
Check out some of these online artist communities and try them out. The best way to figure out which one is right for you is by giving them a go yourself:
Drawing doesn’t have to be difficult, for why is drawing so hard.
Creating art is a long process with many twists and turns, but it should be fun, enjoyable, and creative above all else.
If you are finding drawing too hard and you want to improve your skills, there are plenty of options for you to try.
Start off by figuring out what art you like and what you want to draw, take in some resources and teaching in this area, and gather as many sources and inspirational materials as you can.
After that, get started with the basics, which include practicing basic shapes and drawing the world around you. Once you’ve built the basic building blocks, you can move on to more detailed drawing and experiment with your art.
Have a think about what materials you are using to draw, and whether they are best suited to you, and what you’re trying to create. Try some different options and consult expert resources if needed.
Join an online community and feel the support and wisdom of others around you with the same goals.
Overall, have fun.
Don’t be too hard on yourself.
And just get out there and draw.