How long did it take?

Questions, skill improvement, and respectful critique involving art assets.
Message
Author
User avatar
Rozume
Veteran
Posts: 351
Joined: Wed Oct 31, 2012 11:10 pm
Completed: Munster Academy, boy
Projects: Coming of Age VN
Organization: Cosmic Visual
IRC Nick: Rozume
Contact:

How long did it take?

#1 Post by Rozume » Fri Apr 25, 2014 3:30 pm

We all know that art takes years, YEEAARRS, to cultivate and master. I've heard somewhere that it takes 5-10 years for one to get to a professional level, maybe even longer. So I was wondering how long did it take to get to your level? What advice would you give to your younger self to make your process seem faster or better?

For me, I've been doodling since I was little but I've never really seriously started drawing until a couple of years ago. When I about 12 I started drawing anime figures and that's all I did until I was 16/17 when I started to focus on studying from reality. I'm 19 now.

Some advice I would give myself:
-Do not start from anime/manga or any other style. I've learned that drawing in any type of style is a difficult and highly advanced skill (because you have to distort/break reality). It's like starting to learn how to run before you can walk.
-Observe from reality. Reality is the foundation of all things.
-Learn foundational skills such as value, perspective, composition. You can't build a house without a foundation.
-Do not avoid the hands and feet. I always do this, and it really hurts my figure drawings because of it.

User avatar
Fungii
Veteran
Posts: 368
Joined: Sat Jun 23, 2012 10:47 am
Completed: Home's Embrace
Projects: Royality TV
Tumblr: fungiidraws
itch: fungii
Location: England
Contact:

Re: How long did it take?

#2 Post by Fungii » Fri Apr 25, 2014 3:42 pm

Idk about the style thing, I started by being influenced by anime and I'd say I've reached a decent point for about 10 years of work. People tend to push the realism thing so hard on kiddies that they end up with the impression that what people are telling them is that they need to master realism before they even try to stylise when for me it's always been just noticing stuff irl and stylising it anyway.
As a kid I was always telling myself I'd never make a career out of drawing because then it's not a hobby, it's work, and now all I can say is ha ha ha ha ha ha.

User avatar
Rozume
Veteran
Posts: 351
Joined: Wed Oct 31, 2012 11:10 pm
Completed: Munster Academy, boy
Projects: Coming of Age VN
Organization: Cosmic Visual
IRC Nick: Rozume
Contact:

Re: How long did it take?

#3 Post by Rozume » Fri Apr 25, 2014 3:50 pm

I agree that people tend to push realism on kids these days. And this might be a typically Western/cultural thing because Westerners approach art by basing it off of reality compared to Easterners, who base art off of aesthetics (I could be wrong on this though, this is what I've noticed lately...)

Oh, I'm going to add: "Learn Art History" to the list, especially learning art from other cultures. C:

User avatar
chocojax
Miko-Class Veteran
Posts: 700
Joined: Sun Oct 25, 2009 11:27 am
Completed: http://art.jphi.me/projects
Projects: Umbra, Familiarity, Maleficent Justice
Organization: spaceNote
Tumblr: chocojax
Github: jenniferphi
Location: California
Contact:

Re: How long did it take?

#4 Post by chocojax » Fri Apr 25, 2014 5:23 pm

I've been drawing since I was little as well. Started out with a pretty basic style of stick figures and circles, and then I went into anime/manga, haha. I'm not ashamed of it and wouldn't want that path to change, though!

I didn't start "serious" studying until the summer before I entered college. I'm 19 as well!

About the style thing, I just observe things and try to stylize them as well. If I'm having too much trouble with it, I try to draw it as I see it, so that I could see if there's anything specific need so that it looks like what it should look like.

Some advice:
- Ask yourself, "Am I hiding anything on purpose?" Don't get caught up with making the hands look "good," just force yourself to start on them. Eventually, you'll get better!
- For the most part, it's pretty fine if you wanna draw away from realism. Just try to do studies and observe things carefully!

Learning about art styles outside of your realm is pretty nice, though. Sometimes you find something that you really like about X style and want to pull it into your drawings.

User avatar
noeinan
Eileen-Class Veteran
Posts: 1080
Joined: Sun Apr 04, 2010 10:10 pm
Projects: Ren'Py QuickStart, Crimson Rue
Organization: Statistically Unlikely Games
Deviantart: daikiraikimi
Github: daikiraikimi
Location: Washington State, USA
Contact:

Re: How long did it take?

#5 Post by noeinan » Fri Apr 25, 2014 6:31 pm

I have been drawing for close to 20 years now, and I feel I'm only just starting to break out of "intermediate" and into "professional." I still have several key skills to develop at a professional level-- for instance I have been sketching all 20 years, but it is only in the past 7 years that I've done any inking/coloring, and only in the past 2-3 years that I've been "seriously" pursuing those skills.

(Overall, though, I drew much more before I went to college and have only been able to get back into it after graduating. Elementary through high school I drew for several hours every day. Now I'm lucky if I get a chance to draw on the weekends, haha!)

I started drawing in the anime/manga skill, only doing realistic drawing for class. I'd say it's easy to pretty up a picture that has a bad "structure" if you start from a stylized media. But, it is fully possible to start from cartoons/anime style and then later learn anatomy and realism, bringing those skills to your art.

I feel that I was studying anatomy before I pursued realism, because I would use lots and lots of resource pictures drawn by people who *did* study anatomy. One of the best quotes I have heard regarding art progression is "Seek out and look at art that you want to make." Because the art you look at, even for amusement, can influence the way your brain views the human figure. :)
Image

Image
Image

User avatar
sendo
Veteran
Posts: 290
Joined: Sun Sep 01, 2013 2:28 am
Completed: To Libertad, Diamond Rose, SC2VN, Sickness VN
Projects: eroges!
itch: sendo
Contact:

Re: How long did it take?

#6 Post by sendo » Fri Apr 25, 2014 9:35 pm

I drew a lot as a small kid like a lot of people. But I've only taken it seriously a year ago, when I quit my job because I didn't really enjoy what I did. Anyways, I've been seriously studying almost everyday after that, I still do a lot of studies and will probably do studies for the rest of my life. Of course there are bouts of art block I encounter along the way and I regularly take some side jobs to keep myself afloat. But I just soldier on and keep drawing.

For style, I always knew that I'd do anime/manga because it is what I love drawing. But I also developed a love for realism, because I learned so much (and will still learn a lot) by studying real anatomy and real environments. I started appreciating nature more because all of these studies heh. Okay, I'm getting offtopic.

For advice for myself:
* Study the smart way.
* Put time into it, don't speed draw/paint everything.
* Stop trying to imagine everything. Use references, a lot of it.
* Be very critical of your own work, if the face looks off, go back and fix it.
Finished VNs:
Image Image

User avatar
Auro-Cyanide
ssǝʇunoƆ ʇɹ∀
Posts: 3059
Joined: Sun Jul 25, 2010 9:02 am
Completed: http://auro-cyanide.tumblr.com/visualnovels
Projects: Athena
Organization: Cyanide Tea
Tumblr: auro-cyanide
Deviantart: Auro-Cyanide
Location: Melbourne, Australia
Contact:

Re: How long did it take?

#7 Post by Auro-Cyanide » Fri Apr 25, 2014 9:55 pm

I've been drawing fairly consistently since I was 12-13, so around 12 years. And honestly I wouldn't have changed a thing with my learning process. I think looking at your past process with hindsight is the incorrect way of doing things. There are reasons why so many people start by mimicking things they like before they move on to studying. That isn't a bad thing. While sure, you would have improved faster if you had studied right from the beginning, would you actually have gone through the 'sucking' part where you barely had hand eye co-ordination if all you were doing was studying instead of doing something you already intrinsically loved? I know as a 12 year old I wouldn't have.

User avatar
MaiMai
Yandere
Posts: 1757
Joined: Sat Mar 21, 2009 6:04 pm
Completed: [Phase Shift]
Projects: [ None ]
Organization: Paper Stars
Tumblr: maiscribbles
Deviantart: maiscribble
Location: USA, Southern California
Contact:

Re: How long did it take?

#8 Post by MaiMai » Fri Apr 25, 2014 10:38 pm

I doodled a lot when I was a kid and I was particularly interested in drawing in the style of the Powerpuff Girls. I stopped for a while, but I got into drawing anime/manga back in middle school and decided to get serious about art in high school. It's taken me about 8-ish years to get to where I am now.

My improvement is evident even if I feel slow and there's a ton I need to be a bit more efficient about and I need to challenge myself more. Hands are still the devil to me, but I'm trying really REALLY hard to study what I research. I am so happy about the internet and it's wealth of art references, if I didn't do digital work I don't think I would have improved as I have.
Image COMMISSIONS AVAILABLE (check Tumblr sidebar)

User avatar
Lesleigh63
Miko-Class Veteran
Posts: 559
Joined: Fri May 31, 2013 7:59 pm
Completed: House of Dolls; Lads in Distress - Nano'16; Delusion Gallery Nano'18
Projects: BL VN
Deviantart: Lesleigh63
Contact:

Re: How long did it take?

#9 Post by Lesleigh63 » Fri Apr 25, 2014 11:34 pm

I started drawing before computers were household items (yes, I'm that old). Started by drawing/copying things like Xmas cards and moved onto book covers. Used coloured pencil, moved onto crayons (you can blend crayons), acrylics and finally oil paints. Switched between writing and painting every few years. Lost interest in painting for about a decade and then found digital (whole new world opened up). Love the look of anime/manga but don't do it very well myself (I'm not good at placing the shadows). I tend to paint realism (avatar is one of mine) but there's so many techniques you can employ with digital - I'm learning something new all the time.
Image

User avatar
Green Glasses Girl
Veteran
Posts: 367
Joined: Thu Jul 11, 2013 7:16 pm
Projects: Cavaliers & Carnivals
Tumblr: green-glasses
Contact:

Re: How long did it take?

#10 Post by Green Glasses Girl » Sat Apr 26, 2014 1:20 am

I'm been drawing for 15 years now? I am self-taught and haven't taken any drawing courses, so I'm kind of in the amateur to intermediate spectrum. I started with anime/manga and am happy since that is what got me interested in drawing. It's just a hobby for now until I can get to a level of where I want to be with my art!

My advice I tell myself:
* There is power in the silhouette! If you put your characters' silhouettes side by side and you can't really distinguish them other than height difference, consider revising them into something dynamic.
* Draw different head shapes, noses, and body types. Don't focus on your characters being "pretty" all the time because soon your art becomes "pretty boring". There is beauty in things that derive from what we usually find aesthetically pleasing. Draw characters with crooked noses. Draw overweight characters. Draw characters too short, draw characters too tall.
* Draw different ages. Draw children, draw teens, draw young adults, draw adults, draw middle-aged people, draw the elderly. And when you draw old people, drawing a few wrinkles on the face and saying they're an octogenarian doesn't cut it. Look at references and see the age features.
* ASK FOR FEEDBACK! And not from the same people each time. Even someone at a different skill level can see flaws where you can't.
Last edited by Green Glasses Girl on Sat Apr 26, 2014 1:45 am, edited 6 times in total.
Image

Honest Critique
Avatar art by akemicchi.

User avatar
Asceai
Eileen-Class Veteran
Posts: 1258
Joined: Fri Sep 21, 2007 7:13 am
Projects: a battle engine
Contact:

Re: How long did it take?

#11 Post by Asceai » Sat Apr 26, 2014 1:23 am

I haven't started yet ;(

User avatar
chocojax
Miko-Class Veteran
Posts: 700
Joined: Sun Oct 25, 2009 11:27 am
Completed: http://art.jphi.me/projects
Projects: Umbra, Familiarity, Maleficent Justice
Organization: spaceNote
Tumblr: chocojax
Github: jenniferphi
Location: California
Contact:

Re: How long did it take?

#12 Post by chocojax » Sat Apr 26, 2014 2:09 am

Asceai wrote:I haven't started yet ;(
You should! It's fun, man. :D

User avatar
Reikun
Miko-Class Veteran
Posts: 553
Joined: Tue Dec 20, 2011 9:57 pm
Completed: Mnemonic Devices, Ciikos Bridge, Helena's Flowers, The Madness
Projects: Fox in the Hollyhocks
Organization: skyharborr
itch: skyharborr
Contact:

Re: How long did it take?

#13 Post by Reikun » Sat Apr 26, 2014 5:07 am

I've been doodling around since I was little (so at least 15 or 16 years). I don't know how long I've been taking it "seriously." The answer to that changes all the time in my mind. Was it when I was still in high school? When I entered college? Does it matter? Eh. I don't think I can claim to be taking art/drawing seriously until I could write something like an artist statement. I used to think artist statements were overrated, unnecessary, and pretentious until the day I was asked to write one (I'm still struggling to write one in a way that sounds "correct" today. I think it's somewhat important to be able to write down your goals as an artist, if you have any). I'm the odd one that started out with copying photographs but then spiraled into manga hell and struggled for a bit to claw myself out of only being influenced by it.

Anyway, I guess the thing I'd say to my younger self is to always draw what you love, don't be ashamed of what you draw, don't self-deprecate because the cool artists are doing it. Look for supportive people and support them too. Take pride in weirdness. And get some sleep dammit.
ImageImageImage

fastest way to contact me: DM @skyharborr on twitter

User avatar
Laniessa
Veteran
Posts: 251
Joined: Wed Feb 09, 2011 11:10 am
Completed: CDC, Cerulean, WBW, Helena's Flowers
Projects: Chomp Chomp, WaV
Tumblr: adirosa
Deviantart: adirosa
Contact:

Re: How long did it take?

#14 Post by Laniessa » Sat Apr 26, 2014 5:12 am

I think I started properly when I was 12? So it's taken me 4 years? to get to my current level.

For tips, I would tell my 10-year-old-self that there's no point in improving in colouring if I can't draw. (I used to just fill in lineart.) I would also tell myself that reading tutorials won't help if I don't put them to use.

And, ah, that I would be bad at drawing at first, and there's no point in being frustrated about it because that's just how it is.

User avatar
fioricca
Veteran
Posts: 333
Joined: Fri Feb 19, 2010 3:17 am
Completed: Rising Angels Reborn (2013), Rising Angels Fates: Allegiance (2017)
IRC Nick: souten
Contact:

Re: How long did it take?

#15 Post by fioricca » Sat May 10, 2014 9:34 am

Reikun wrote:Anyway, I guess the thing I'd say to my younger self is to always draw what you love, don't be ashamed of what you draw, don't self-deprecate because the cool artists are doing it. Look for supportive people and support them too. Take pride in weirdness. And get some sleep dammit.
LISTEN TO REIKUN sleep is super important. I draw better when I've slept.

I think hobbyist artists and professional artists operate differently. Hobbyist artists draw the things that they love for the fun of it and that's okay. I wouldn't criticise someone who maybe likes pretty girls and their entire portfolio consists of nothing else but pretty girls. Or maybe they like butts and so draw a lot of butts. The main objective here is FUN and LOVE so as long as those requirements are met, the artist is satisfied. Art is personal so I'm just happy that the artist had fun drawing, it doesn't matter if it was just pretty girls or butts.

However, when you start to draw for others... or set your sights on greater things... that's when you start thinking about learning. I was really inspired by LWR's description of 'art is a science'. These days, I find that I run into so many visual communication problems (is this picture communicating the messages that I want to communicate?) and really feel the need to study harder ^^";; I feel like I'm a worse artist now than I was before simply because my scope expanded! So what Auro said here:
Auro-Cyanide wrote:I think looking at your past process with hindsight is the incorrect way of doing things. There are reasons why so many people start by mimicking things they like before they move on to studying. That isn't a bad thing. While sure, you would have improved faster if you had studied right from the beginning, would you actually have gone through the 'sucking' part where you barely had hand eye co-ordination if all you were doing was studying instead of doing something you already intrinsically loved? I know as a 12 year old I wouldn't have.
is something I agree with greatly.

It's something I'm going through with devving. I'm making a lot of stupid major mistakes for Lemon (like GROSSLY OVER-ESTIMATING MYSELF AND UNDER-ESTIMATING THE WORKLOAD), and it's been LONG AND PAINFUL but I realised that I had to fall down and bleed before I can get stronger. I think it's the same with art, there's no one set formula to learn things. I'm pretty happy with the stupid mistakes I've made and don't regret drawing all those BL fandom comics at all. ^q^

Post Reply

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users