It is essential to cultivate a hobby in life as it keeps you engaged in something you love. It is an easy escape from the stress of everyday life and develops patience and concentration. Also it allows you to socialize with people of the same interest and create stronger bonds. It will be noteworthy that the upcoming generation understands the importance of having a hobby. That is why schools these days are also putting an extra effort into teaching a hobby in children at an early age.
Art is one such hobby that is therapeutic and has been scientifically proven that art helps you relax. It is an expression of what is built up in your mind and body and releasing it on a paper or a canvas. Art can also be taken up as a full-time profession in times of crisis. Here we will be sharing the basics of drawing an easy sketch through basic sketch & line drawing. If you want your child to take up art as a hobby or even if you wish to learn, your age doesn’t matter! Let’s get started!
Sketching Tips for beginners
- Know about pencils
To create a basic sketch, you must know about which pencil to use. The graphite hardness is indicated on the pencil. ‘B’ pencil is soft, ‘H’ is more challenging and ‘HB’ lies in the middle. Start with pencils with H scale and finish off with B. You can also start with an HB pencil.
- Holding the pencil
It is important how you hold a pencil. Holding the pencil closest to the lid gives you more control and precision, but dark markings. If you grip the pencil on the upper side, you have less power and accuracy, but light markings.
- Try and practice various sketching types
Various sketching techniques help you create a simple drawing, effects, and styles. These are hatching, cross-hatching, stippling, scribbling, small circles, and finger blend. Experiment these forms and know which works best for you.
- Draw varied lines
Subtle shifts in the darkness and width of the lines you draw can create exciting and dynamic effects. Getting such command and control is difficult in the initial stages, but practice will make you creative. Keep on experimenting with different pencil shades from 3H to 6B and hold the pencil at different angles.
- Do not Smudge
Always keep an extra paper below your hand. This minimizes the chances of smudging the sketch by your hand. If you are a lefty, start sketching right to the left, and if you are right-handed, shade from left to right.
- Control the edges
As a famous artist, Von Rueden says he uses four sketching techniques for an easy sketch drawing to define an object’s edges. These techniques are challenging, thin, undefined, and lost. The artist also suggests you should keep on exploring the types and combine them to create an artwork.
- Use the 70/30 rule
Sketch drawing mostly uses this technique. The idea is, 30% of your sketch holds the main detail and focus, while the rest 70% acts as filler. This draws even much more attention to the main subject of your work.
- Keep a good contrast
Symmetrical drawings generally do not gain attention. Keeping a nice contrast by shading gives a good sketchy feel. Add subtle changes in your sketch and keep only the general lines symmetrical. Do not mirror every part of the sketch drawing.
- Understand textures
You must know how to differentiate between textures. Do not shade skin or fur or metals the same way. All of these have peculiar properties that should be visible in a sketch. A surface with a smooth and reflecting surface will have higher contrasts and significant highlights. Similarly, an object that absorbs light like cotton will have lower differences and little highlights.
Line Drawing Basics
The essential element of art is the line. Before the advent of photography, line drawing or line art used to be the standard format for drawing illustrations in print publications and was done using black ink on a white paper. Probably, the first time we had picked up a crayon or a pencil or pen, we must have drawn a line. So an easy sketch can contain line drawing, which is an image consisting of different straight lines or curved lines drawn on a plain background, without shading or coloring, to represent 2-D or 3-D objects.
So let us understand the power of a line through the basics of watercolor & line drawing:
- Understand the line function
Line drawing or contour drawing uses lines to differentiate the plane. What is the differentiation of a plane? It is the corner of an object where two sides meet. When you draw a cubical box, each side of this box is a plane, and you can see them meet. Understanding this idea of drawing a plane is essential to learn line drawing.
- Changes of plane
We have drawn a box with sharp edges. What if we want to draw a box with round edges? The change of plane is gradual here, and it isn’t crisp. You can do so in the following two ways:
- You can draw the visible edges with the help of solid curved lines. But this makes the box look much harder than it is.
- Use an implied line instead. This means drawing a line with slight breaks to suggest that an edge is present, but that edge isn’t tangible like the outer lines. This lets you create an effect of gradual change in plane.
- Creating complex changes of plane
Till now, we have just used line drawings to create a box. But mostly, our objects are much more complicated. They have multiple changes in the plane—some sharp other gradual.
Let us take an example of a human face. You can divide it into some planes. The face and jaw sides are one plane. The nose, forehead, cheek tops, and chin are the forward planes. The top of the head and lips are horizontal planes. Studying an object and dividing it into planes is a useful approach in line drawing.
- Problems in the line drawing
It becomes challenging to decide when we should use a solid line and when an implied line to describe a change of plane. In pure contour, generally subtle planes of the human face are ignored.
- Implied Line
It is advised that you should use implied lines to display tricky changes of plane, until and unless you specifically want very crisp composition. Implied or broken lines show the softer changes of the plane amazingly. For example, if you are drawing the portrait of a human face, the implied line can illustrate the side of the nose and mouth shape. A couple of short marks can be used to draw chin or rounded cheeks.
So if you use implied lines and good awareness about the plane’s change, you can create better and realistic 3-D line drawings.
Pro-tips for using Watercolors
- Buy the right tools: By this, we mean you should have the right set of tools to achieve desirable results. This includes round brushes of 2, 4, 6,8,10, 12 numbers, and two big flat brushes. Next, you should have a palette big enough to help to mix colors. And the last requirement is the right quality colors and a paper or canvas.
- Start doodling or making sketches from your life or imagination.
- Do color study before filling the colors. This means imagining the composition to make it more enchanting. This brings focus to the point of your interest.
- Always clean your tools and palette after use. This prevents the color from getting dirty and hard to control.
- Always judge the amount of water you take on your brush while using watercolors. This needs practice and will come with time. Correct judgment will help you create better shades with colors.
- There is no hard and fast rule where you should start painting a picture. However, the most common way is to paint from light to darker shades. But you can do the opposite too!
- Let things dry nicely while you paint, to avoid smear.
- Do not worry much while you learn. Always be creative; keep on exploring and experimenting with colors. Do not get tense if the colors bring out of boundaries. There are no such rules to it; have tools to keep learning and enjoying!