This article is part of a series on drawing. For the full series, view our book.
As an aspiring painter I’ve often been faced with this question of how to begin my visual education when I was in preschool and just beginning to paint.
It’s often thought that being able to draw and develop your artistic sense will be enough to create a lasting interest in a drawing class. I never considered it likely I’d take a drawing class so I asked around and heard a lot of stories about people who couldn’t get any interest in it even though they had excellent formal training. A lot of students are going through a lot at the moment with their formal study sessions and the pressures of their family environment.
I’ve seen the effect on some students. Some have lost motivation as a result and have started doing their own drawings. Others are starting to look for a professional illustrator or illustrator that can help them. I even tried to learn to draw myself, I didn’t know how.
One thing that is becoming evident is that drawing can’t just be taught or learned as a matter of course. It can only really be learned with consistent practice. Without going into too much detail, for me as a writer I’ve learned to read by writing it down and putting it in my journal. With drawings I think it takes a little more practise than that as you have to use your own imagination, which is difficult when you know that you’re getting a piece of paper.
One of the problems with many formal classes is that you can expect your students to try and mimic your own drawings even when you say to “Stop”. In the same way you need to try and draw something similar. That way you can show your students in a more realistic way how you’ve drawn your own work and get an idea of what it might look like. Of course you don’t want your student to do a ‘copy’ of what they’re seeing in the class. If it’s something that they’re happy with then they’re unlikely to be too upset about it.
One of the most important things when it comes to drawing is that you should show people exactly what you’re trying to tell them. You should never have your pupils draw just to demonstrate how to draw. You should instead draw to tell the story.
One way to do this is to make sure that people can see exactly what you’re doing. There is a problem with many traditional visual aids though. By having them in their hands it’s
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