Help with where to start

  • Hi everyone,

    I've always doodled on and off, but I'm new to a formal approach to learning art. I listened to Episode 2 of the 3 Point Perspective podcast and I believe Jake outlined a detailed plan in three phases (which I estimate will take me 4 to 7 years to complete).

    The first part of the plan was to take classes in the fundamentals:

    • Perspective
    • Light + Shadow
    • Composition
    • Figures / Gestures
    • Anatomy
    • Colour
    • Line, Shape, Tone

    Today I started Jake's "How to Draw Everything Course", and discovered that it's mostly about the last item on the list, Line, Shape, and Tone. It's clearly meant to be a very introductory, beginner course, so I conclude that these list items aren't necessarily in any kind of order.

    Can some veterans weigh in and help me determine what order I should be tackling these in, and maybe recommending some classes? I'd like to put together a schedule for myself as if I was actually at art school in the evenings 🙂

    Thanks very much!

  • SVS Team SVS Instructor Pro SVS OG

    @Basil-Godevenos Hi there, It s a great question on where to start. If I was you I would wait like 2 weeks. We are releasing an entire new curriculum with new videos and a very solid track that should make the path much more clear.

    In the mean time, Just take a peek around and check out any of the videos that look interesting. : )

  • Pro

    @Basil-Godevenos Where to start is a hard question. To create consistently strong images, you need all of the things on the list. I wouldn't say there's any of them clearly more important than the others, and yet you do need some place to start. My own college experience doesn't give me an answer for you either - in college we have several classes at the same time so we learn all those things simultaneously. Maybe I would merge Figures and Anatomy, those are thing you kind of learn together. You can also hold off on perspective and maybe even color until you learn to draw. That would leave you composition, figures, line/shape and light/shadow left. Those are things that are people frequently learn all together at first, so my instinct would be to tell you to learn the basics of all these topics kind of at the same time before digging deeper into any one of those subjects.

  • @Lee-White oh awesome! Thanks for the tip.

  • @NessIllustration thanks! That makes a lot of sense. I suppose I can take multiple classes concurrently. I hadn't thought to do it that way but it might make the most sense to do it that way, and it might help keep things moving and interesting.

  • What I have done so far was setting a list of priorities for myself, based on where I felt that I needed more training (based on my goal, which is creating a first portfolio that can get me some kind of work). I literally made a list of illustration skills (core drawing skills, storytelling, process ...) and assigned myself a score, trying to look at the work of PROs I look up to. Items with lower scores got the highest priority and I turned them into self-given assignments.

  • Hi Basil!
    I'm new to SVS, too. I've taken a few of the classes, but the best intro class by far is Lee's "How to Discover Your Style".
    This class was immensely helpful to me and I wish I'd found it two years ago when I started taking art seriously again. The class objective is to find illustrations/artwork you like so that you understand what is important to you in your art. Then you build a dream portfolio, a collection of art you wish you could've done. The last step is to look at your own portfolio and compare it to the professionals you admire, but this could be skipped over (or wait until a later time when you have a portfolio).
    I found that identifying what I like and don't like about a work of art has helped me focus on developing skills in line with my objectives instead of continuing along "blind". It wasn't enough to just say "I really like this", I had to analyze why I liked it, which forced me to figure out what my own art needed if I wanted to do similar work.
    Anyway, until the new curriculum is released, it's a fun way to be productive, and what you find out about yourself is useful (IMO) as you pursue the technical stuff.

  • @Elena-Marengoni Oh I love that approach. I think I'm nearly a zero in everything at this point. So I plan to gobble everything up. I don't even have that clear of an idea what my end goal is yet!

  • @Anni brilliant! Thank you so much. That's exactly what I need.

  • Hi, @Basil-Godevenos I am a high school art teacher and my thoughts(for what they are worth) is that it all hinges on drawing first and then composition next. A well-drawn, well-composed drawing covers a lot of "sins" in art in my opinion. I would start with one of the drawing videos like Drawing fundamentals and then take Creative Composition 2.0 by Will Terry. Or wait the two weeks and see what @Lee-White and the other profs have up their sleeves. Looking through again I realized I want to refresh on beginning Photoshop and Mixed Media-Watercolor and Digital.

  • @chrisaakins Thanks very much! I've just started the "How to draw everything" course, so that should keep me occupied for a bit. I work full time and have a wife and young kids, so I really just have lunch hours and an hour or two in the evenings to devote.

  • @Basil-Godevenos I totally understand. Full time art teacher here with wife and grad school. My kids are grown, though, and the grandbaby lives out of state. So my time spent here is sporadic.

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