Just Joined! Completed a couple of classes, need some direction for what's next

  • Once upon a time, a 33 year old Graphic Designer/Design Director who used to love to draw characters when he was a kid started sketching again and bought an iPad. He's very rusty so he joined SVS Learn.

    I started with How To Draw Everything, Posing Characters, and still working through Light and Shadow for Illustrators. Right now I'm just really looking for advice on where I should go next. I want to improve fundamentally, I know I need to dive more into light and shadow and also I'd like to understand from my current sketches what else I need to work on.

    Below are a few things I've been working on. None of them finished, all of them "abandoned" after hitting a different wall on each of them. Any help or advice GREATLY appreciated!

    IMG_0122.jpg IMG_0123.jpg IMG_0124.jpg IMG_0125.jpg IMG_0126.jpg

  • Hi welcome!! Do you know what your goals are? Are you just trying to improve your fundamental skills or do you want to become a children's book illustrator? Or start your own web comic? Are there any artists that you LOVE and wish you could draw like?

    I think that will help you get the best advice!

  • @carlianne thanks for taking the time. Children’s book illustrator is the dream, sure! But I’m really focusing on baby steps right now. I’ve been away for far too long working with a mouse instead of a pencil.

    With a full time job and a couple kids, I’m able to hop on and sketch for a couple hours a day, but I’m committed. I want to get better, wherever that may take me!

    I follow a ton of artists of all different colors on Instagram, but really want to get better at character and gesture, then move deeper into perspective and background drawing (I think?)

    Thanks again,

  • Pro

    @MikeCarrot Lovely work! SVS just came out with this new curriculum thing, a group of classes with an order and all that's supposed to take you from A to Z in the learning process. I'd start there if I were you!

  • @NessIllustration thanks! Saw that, I think that’s the way to go as well. Just wondering what I can keep in mind when diving in.

  • Welcome! I recommend taking perspective. That will help with characters, backgrounds, even light and shadow. It'll give you a lot of freedom to play around once you get comfortable with it.

  • I know you said you were not focusing on environments and perspective yet, but the class that really was a break through for me was Will's 50 Things class. It helped me to be able to create a space and add things to that space. The challenge is to include 50 things in that space. I highly recommend it!

  • @MikeCarrot the how to draw gesture course on here is wonderful. It has helped me loosen up my characters more and really get an understand of how the human body moves. I hadn't done a single gestural drawing in 10 years, I had forgotten how quick and fun they are! There is also an anatomy course on here as well I'd like to check out next but haven't quite gotten to which would be a nice base to start from. I hear there's a new curriculum too on here but I haven't checked that out yet.

  • @KaraDaniel awesome. Thank you, I’ll check it out!

  • @deborah-Haagenson yup! I’ve heard about this one on the podcast and read about it as well. Scared of it for now, but excited for the challenge! Haha

  • @MikeCarrot Maybe just start by watching Will's demo. Then you might feel more comfortable to try it on you're own.

  • SVS OG

    Welcome to the forum!

  • @MikeCarrot Hi Mike. It can be overwhelming to decide what to work on next (I always think everything, but everything doesn't get anything done). As such I looked at each of your work for a quick critique if that's alright and maybe it will help you focus on the areas you could strengthen and not feel you have to start from scratch. Here it goes 1.(first work) 2. (second work) etc:

    1. Consider how you finish your edges whether with blue or white to separate or distinguish shape and space. I prefer white, I do that more in my work.
    2. Background and character are roughly the same value. Think of a chess board. On a position your edges look like you made up your mind. Blue for the shadows and white for the highlights.
    3. Now I've watched Harry Potter (many a time) but I am not up on the lingo for the pardon me "flying ball" lols. My advice is have Harry interact also with the "flying ball" -have it coming up closer to us ad have Harry's eyes follow it (Harry looking at it even now would help). This addition helps add further story, takes your viewer on a little eye ball trip, also helps direct traffic around or at least to another area on your page (intentionally).
    4. His foot/ hand appear a bit large (I realise their coming forward). Also you have 3 references to super heroes (bud, iron and spider) and so I read kid is a fan of many of them but I find the story unclear. I have tried twice to explain what I mean and failed. So I'll leave it at play around with story.
    5. Again finishing up with our lines and edges, and once again a clearer story (I realise it's only part of the image).

    Thank you for reading all that, I hope it helps, it helps me as well to spot things I need to remember in my own work. 🙂
    Others here have and will no doubt help you in other ways.

  • @MikeCarrot the gesture class here really helped me. When I get stuck with my characters (very new to them), gesturing their activity helps with my foundation of how to visualise and draw them.

  • @MikeCarrot once you learn something -especially the really cool ah ha moments, apply that to a new work. Keep creating as you proceed through the lessons. I am good with homework and struggle with implementing. So I am currently slowing down and working on a work to apply some of what I have learned (including the gesture class I took late last year).

  • @Heather-Boyd the little flying ball is a snitch!!!! when you have kids who listen to Harry Potter on audible for several years, these things get drilled into your brain lol!!!!
    @MikeCarrot is the second illustration a cartoon of the guy from The Office? I only saw the show a couple of times but it looks just like him!

  • @Coley it is, yes. Jim. I just re-listened to the Harry books again a couple years ago. Had to. Narrator is great.

  • @Heather-Boyd thank you Heather for taking the time and looking at this stuff. Really appreciate the feedback!

  • @TessaW Jake’s “how to draw everything” perspective section hurt my brain, but I felt like I learned a lot practicing those shapes in space. The next perspective class is definitely on the list, I just haven’t done perspective in so long. Only one class in college. Thanks for the tip!

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