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Article - 'Be a better artist' by Stevester

An item about Graphics/Audio posted on Aug 8, 2003

Blurb

Want to learn how to draw, paint, and do any art, better? I provide you with these magnificent super mondo-cool activities that will help you become a better artist!

Body

This is more of a Psychological-type article, describing the attributes of the mind, and how to make yourself a better artist. This article is for beginners, advanced, and expert artists. No matter how good you are, this article should help you be better.

Psychological stuff:
These activities that I’m going to give you describe what side of your brain you use. Your left side of your brain controls the right side of your body, and the left side controls the right side. The right side is the creative side and spatial activities, and the left side is the task side, which controls areas like math and programming languages, stuff that you just have to remember. The left side also is for remembering things, and tasks like talking. Girls are naturally dominant on the left side of their brain, when it comes to speaking. (that’s why they can talk so fast. :x) Boys, on the other hand, are more of the right side, when it comes to spatial activities. (That’s why we’re naturally better at video games.)

Where does this all come in, when it comes to drawing? Well, since the right side controls spatial and creative activities, and art is creativity, artists need to strengthen their right side of the brain.

Part 1: Activities
These activities will help strengthen the right side of your brain, in return ‘makes’ you become a better artist. Please take note that you must also practice the art you are doing now to become any better. These activities won’t suddenly make you a better artist, they will merely let you progress faster and take your art to new heights.

Level chart
1: easy
2: medium
3: hard
4: expert

-Activity 1: Negative space drawing. Level: 1
What this activity will do is force your mind to stop ‘labeling’ the object you’re drawing.

What to do:
Pick out an object in the room. Now, focus on the space around the object, not the object itself. Draw everything outside the object. You should try not to think of what the objects outside of the object are. It should come out to be an outline of the object you drew, without shading or details or anything inside of the object, just a blank space.

-Activity 2: Upside down head drawing. Level: 2
This activity will do same as above, in a different way.

What to do:
Get a picture of a face out of a magazine or something, and turn it upside down. Copy it onto a piece of paper.(still upside down) when copying it, make sure you don’t think ‘lips, mouth, eyes’. It’s important not to ‘label’ each detail.

-Activity 3: Angle drawing. Level: 3
This will allow you to draw more freely, and not erase all the lines on your paper over and over again just to get them perfect.

What to do:
Look to a corner of the room you’re in. Put it onto paper. When you draw the specific details of it, make sure you see the angles of each specific turn and shape. This is hard to do unless you’re apt in the right hemisphere of your brain, which you should by now. The angles should be near perfect when you’re finished.

-Activity 4: Upside down negative space drawing. Level: 3
This will do the exact same thing as activities 1&2, to a higher extent.

What to do:
Get a picture of a person’s head, and turn it upside down. Focus on the area around the head, not the head itself. When copying it, make sure you don’t try to label the outlines of the head, just draw the space outside of it. It should come out to be an outline of the object you drew, without shading or details or anything inside of the head, just a blank space.

-Activity 5: Negative space angle drawing. Level: 4
This is the hardest activity of them all. If you can easily do this, than you will be able to draw anything else easier, as long as you practice.

What to do:
Draw a corner of the room you’re in, but make sure it has something in it, like a plant or something. Only draw and shade the actual walls, corner, floor and ceiling, and leave anything else out. Focus on the corner only, not the objects in it.

Now that you’ve tried some of these activities, remember to PRACTICE! Practice is what makes you good. You don’t always have to practice these activities, you just need to practice doing the art you like. Practice makes better!

I’ll try to come up with some more activities, along with harder ones than #5.

Happy drawing!