Personally, I learned by tracing over character images when I was 14 and eventually learned body perportions, clothing, and shading. Eventually establishing my own art style.
How about everyone else?
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So I started taking art seriously when I saw Feng Zhu's videos back in 2013, he's a concept artist and at that time I became so inspired that I wanted to become a concept artist too. I watched all his videos and religiously followed his advice which is study fundamentals; perspective, form, anatomy, composition, values etc. I discouraged myself from drawing anime stuff because in my mind it wasn't what the pros do.
Unfortunately, I had very little stamina when it comes to studying. I'd do studies but I always end up becoming frustrated, I had a hard time understanding fundamentals and honestly it was too cut and dry. I started getting burnt out so I went back to my comfort zone, which is anime style stuff (not saying I was good at this point, but I just love drawing anime stuff since forever)
And whaddya know, drawing what I actually liked drawing boosted my morale and I recovered from my slump. So instead of just going back to studying hardcore fundamentals, I mixed it up with anime stuff; perspective/landscape studies using anime backgrounds, gesture studies referencing animators' stuff, color studies using anime stuff. This way I still studied fundamentals but the subject matter and art style was hugely relevant to my personal interests. That kept me going.
I also did real-life studies in between because I didn't want to always be in my safe comfy place in anime land, this was hard to do sometimes to be honest. I'm not done studying fundamentals though; there's still much for me to learn, but I'm glad I put in the time honing fundamentals. Seeing the hundreds of hours I toiled pay off is a reward on its own I guess.
I still look up to and appreciate Feng Zhu, concept artists and all the other types of artists out there. I simply don't have the desire to become a concept artist in the same vain as Feng Zhu anymore because I think following my love for anime stuff is the key to my growth in art.
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I originally learned by drawing characters from my favourite games, mainly Sonic characters. Naturally, this left my general grasp on anatomy, clothing, shading etc very off so when I did attempt more realistic characters I found it very difficult. Eventually I just lost interest in drawing altogether for a plethora of reasons until around a year ago where I decided to take it back up.
Now, it's just a journey of me slowly working to fix my personal habits. I hate studying fundamentals rather than just drawing whatever I want, which hurts my already low motivation to draw. But it's necessary for me to properly learn them so I just push through and now I can draw a half decent anime male, so progress!
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I guess it started from tracing a WWII fighter from a military magazine when I was around 10, after that for some reason I could draw what ever I could see some times it would turn out great, some times I'd fail. I stopped drawing when I started high school (2007-2008) till 2 years ago. which I bought My first drawing tablet, the funny thing is that I didn't know if I really want to draw again or not, I guess I bought it because it was a special offer and it had a 2 years key for Clip Studio Paint!
I didn't know how to color stuff, so it was really hard at first, I started to learn Oyari Ashitos art style and wanted to make a VN for my A.D. Project.
The VN Failed but it was enough for me to get my mark. after that, I pretty much didn't study art... but I observe other peoples work trying to understand what they do. at first, all I wanted was a proper face! now I want to learn anatomy and who knows whats next? I think I have finished around 20 and dropped like 10 works in the past 2 years.
you can find all my works from day one on this topic here viewtopic.php?f=54&t=35468
I think I have changed a lot haha...
Nowadays I care about drawings a lot more, I buy art books and have a reference collection, a good thing about this forum is that I know my drawings can be useful at some point ... for someone ...
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I'm self-taught 3D artist, so it might helped me with proportions, perspective etc.
Anyway, I started with a printer paper, a pen (yes, not even a pencil) and watched Mark Crilley's youtube videos (I really recommend him for start).
After some time I bought myself nice sketchbook (to keep it stored, loose pages might got lost) and mechanical pencil and simply started to draw every single day. At the beginning I was drawing like one page a day, but as I was drawing more and more I noticed quicker progress. Now I try to draw 5 pages a day + some digitally. Mostly some random poses, emotions, simple shapes and objects, with each page I try to improve on something I know I'm not good enough.
I was drawing mostly from imagination(I didn't want someone else's style influence too much my work), trying to get it right with every line. I was also redrawing manga/anime/games art from time to time (no tracing! just look and try to recreate it). From time to time I've also used real photos as references for poses etc.
I was trying many styles and finally I think I've come up with my own.
At some point I bought drawing tablet with Clip Studio Paint to go digitally, so in addition to daily sketches I started drawing on computer. I still have to learn more about coloring and painting backgrounds.
My suggestions to anyone starting:
Just keep drawing, don't get discouraged! And write date on each page, you might be surprised how you improved when you look at it few months later.
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Mark Crilley was the beginning of my journey too, lol. I remember having YouTube opened on one of those old computers that ran on windows 98 and going by his guide on how to draw 'an anime girl with a pigtail'. But I was really young when I started so I didn't have a tab or anything like that, instead I let out my creative spirit one of those magnetic boards that came with the stamps. Glad it broke because otherwise I wouldn't have converted to digital.mikolajspy wrote:I watched Mark Crilley's youtube videos (I really recommend him for start).
Age 9-12 I drew a lot on MS Paint
Age 12-14 I was introduced to Flash and started drawing on there and trying to make animations. I was obsessed with Newgrounds.
Age 14-17 A teacher gave me a copy of Photoshop for free, so this is when I started to learn a real art program. I used and abused the dodge and burn tool too much.
Age 18- 22 I discovered Paint Tool Sai and fell in love. It's still one of the main programs I use for lineart and coloring. I use Photoshop mainly for quick edits or animations. I also started to learn Adobe After Effects.
Age 23- Present I have a fancy new 2 in 1 computer that has a stylus and I can draw straight on my screen with pressure sensitivity. It doesn't work with Sai though, so that's when I discovered Clip Studio Paint. I do a lot of sketching and other rendering in it.
Throughout all this, I've also stuck with traditional art. I pretty much use any medium. I also work with leather and chainmaille, and other various crafts.
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