Yes – I probably hear this more than anything else. The correct reply should be – If you really wanted to, you could learn to do it. I mean that – I sincerely believe everyone can do it If they really want to.
Forget the books and the Dvd’s, of the ‘Get Drawing and Sketching like a Pro in 15 Minutes’ variety, or the ‘Six Easy Steps to Paint like an Old Master’. They are not going to help you. If you really want to learn, give all those books and Dvd’s away and get yourself a cheap sketchbook and a couple of pencils. That’s it, they shouldn’t cost more than £2 and you are on your way. Teach yourself, by regular practice, I mean it, It’s a numbers game! The more you do, the better you’ll get, repeat after me, The more you do, the better you’ll get.
The person who can’t learn like this hasn’t been born yet. Artists are not ‘born with a gift’and none of them achieved success, without plenty of failures. Chris Eubank, the professional boxer, said recently “I lost more matches than I won” – meaning that his failures were more frequent than his successes. Now I know we couldn’t all become professional boxers, I certainly don’t have the physique or the courage, but I do know that ‘fear of failure’ is the most common impediment to learning a skill like drawing or painting.
So we need to Celebrate Failures, after all, the more failures we have, the closer we are to being successful. We need to learn to ‘Fail to Succeed!’ One way to learn any creative skill, is to Experiment, try a new method, a new medium, try a subject you’ve not sketched before, if you are no good at buildings, sketch buildings, more buildings, and more buildings, until one day you will notice that they no longer seem to be impossibly difficult. I did this with my Trees, I could not draw trees, so I gave myself a year to draw and paint trees, trees and yet more trees. By learning this way, you will acquire ‘a habit of sketching’, call it an addiction if you prefer. This is vital for your future success rate, because like a BOGOF deal, the better your drawing and sketching, the more successful your paintings will become. I speak from experience here – you won’t find this advice in any book or Dvd.
So let’s summarize:-
1) Get a sketchbook and pencils,
2) Use it daily – the more you do the better you’ll get,
3) Celebrate failure, it’s your journey to future success,
4) Experiment and try difficult mediums and subjects, come out of your comfort zone,
5) Get the BOGOF (buy one get one free) deal – as your drawing improves, so does your painting,
6) Contact me in a year’s time with your experiences, failures and successes and tell me if I was right
7) You may find my 10 Top Tips Learning to Draw helpful, luckily they are FREE if you put your e-mail address in the box nearby or click here.