My Hero Academia Art + How To Start Drawing a Picture

By: hannahn281

Hi! I am back with another fan art (I’ve been trying to draw original characters). This piece is of one of the characters, Shouto Todoroki, who has a super power which allows him to freeze with his right hand, and burn with his left. It took about three hours to draw and I used FireAlpaca and my Wacom Intuos 5 tablet (I use it for all of my drawings). I thought this was really fun to draw because he is very unique looking character. I fell in love with his design: his eyes, his hair, everything. His two “sides” gave me a great opportunity to play around with colored light. This was my first time painting fire, and I wish I made it look neater because it kind of looks like a blob. At least I’ll know how to improve on it in the future.

What I really wanted to discuss was how to begin drawing a picture. Sometimes I have an idea of something I want to draw in my head, but I don’t know how to start. It can be very frustrating sometimes. You can feel like you’re so close, yet so far away from getting it onto the paper. Even if it does get onto the paper, sometimes it doesn’t look the way you want, though you can visualize it. I’m sure some of you have felt this or something similar, whether it be for art, writing, or writing music. Today, I have some tips to overcome this problem, specifically for art. This may not help everyone, but it really works for me,

  1. Use references: If I can’t figure out how a certain pose works, I look it up on google. I often struggle with drawing people sitting down, so just search “people sitting”, and you will get tons of images that will show you whatever pose you were looking for. Then, with a real visual on the side, it becomes much easier to use what you thought up in your head and actually draw it.
  2. Make a gesture sketch: This is a bit harder to describe than it is to show you. Basically, bodies have shapes, so before you get into the itty bitty details, it is easier to draw some shapes to “form” the outline of what you want to draw. I usually do this when drawing more than one character. This also makes the picture look more interesting and less stiff. I have an example of this here. It’s pretty messy, but it gets the idea across so you can start building the drawing.
  3. Try again and again! Sometimes when I sketch out something I’m not satisfied with, I redo it. Of course, this can require some patience and is a bit frustrating, but it gives you a fresh, new start. Also, you might know how to fix what you did wrong after doing it once already. Speaking of which, when I was first starting to draw this picture of Shouto, I originally planned to have his hands in the air, but it really didn’t fit the mood of the picture or him as a character. So, I redid it, and I like this version a lot better.

That’s as many tips I can think of at the moment. I’m sure there are more, so I may share them with you later. Thank you so much for reading. Keep drawing!

 

 

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A Drawing of Shu and Madonee from Ensemble Stars

By: hannahn281

For this post, I decided to draw the character Shu Itsuki and his doll who he calls, “mademoiselle”, or “madonee” for short. To put my own twist on it, I made Madonee a real human being. Shu is from the phone game Ensemble Stars, in which you can collect cards. I used the outfits from this card in my piece. I am actually not that familiar with this game because I’ve never played it before. My older sister is the one who really likes this franchise, in fact, she is sewing the exact dress that Mademoiselle is wearing! I kind of drew this in honor of her, because she is really good at sewing and she gives me a lot of support and encouragement about my art. I don’t know what I would do without her or the rest of my family!

I painted this piece using my Wacom Intuos Tablet and the art program FireAlpaca (as usual). This took about six hours, which felt like forever, especially drawing all of those gears and cogs in the background. Drawing mechanical, straight-edge objects has never been easy for me, so this was pretty good practice! This also helped me practice drawing people at a side view/ profile. The profile is definitely the angle of the face that I struggle with the most. But it quickly began to feel more natural as I went through the lining phase to the coloring phase. In the end, I really did enjoy coloring the sparkly gold trims of these outfits, as well as the steampunky feel they have. Thank you for reading!

Hannah, 10th grade (I will be, next year)

Another Love Live! Fan Art

Hello everyone! Today, I have drawn and painted another fan art for one of my favorite franchises, Love Live!. Along with the anime, there is also a phone app game called “Love Live!”, where you tap circles to the beat of a song and collect cards of your favorite girls. This angel set of cards was released in Japan, and I absolutely fell in love with the outfits and color choices. (The cards can be found here and here).

This piece took about 6 hours in total, but I did take breaks between working on it. I used a Wacom Intuos small drawing tablet and the art program, FireAlpaca. I knew right from the start that this would be a challenge to draw, since I’m not used to drawing lacey clothing. I also planned on giving the girls serious expressions, which as I have mentioned in my other posts, I struggle with that, since usually draw people with a smile on their face. Lastly, I planned on drawing a background for this piece. Again, I almost never draw “real” backgrounds. As you can see, this art took me way out of my comfort zone. Though I was not used to it, I persevered through it all. When I actually drew the clouds and the sky background, it was actually a lot easier than I expected! This proves to show how trying something new can really result in good consequences.

Of course, there are things I don’t like about this art, like You’s face or the weird lens flare in the background (I don’t know why I did that). There were a lot of things I could have added, like making the line art colors match up to the other colors of their clothes. However, I can see that I have really improved on shading and highlights as well as drawing more details!

In the end, I feel that this piece has helped me conquer a lot of struggles that I’ve had while drawing. I hope I can continue to keep drawing and get better and better. When I get struck with something challenging, I won’t just ignore it. I will try to find ways to fix it. Of course, this one drawing is one of many other ones, but each and every tiny drawing that you make will push you forward on your artistic journey; you just have to make it happen.

Hannah, 9th grade

Lunar New Year Drawing + Tips for Young Artists.

Chuc mung nam moi! That’s Vietnamese for “Happy New Year”, even though this post probably won’t be posted exactly on Lunar New Year. I am Vietnamese, so lunar new year is a huge part of my culture. My family comes together, and we eat delicious food like banh chung (Vietnamese sticky rice cake), and play fun games. After dinner, we do “li xi”, where the children wish adults a happy new year (in Vietnamese), and the children get red envelopes with money in them. In joy of this celebration, I drew a picture of two characters, Noiz & Koujaku, from one of my favorite anime, DRAMAtical Murder. This piece took about five hours. I really loved drawing it, because I’ve never drawn these types of clothes before, and it was a great, new experience for me. Isn’t it ironic that I’m drawing Japanese outfits when I’m Vietnamese? In general, there are a lot of things I want to fix about this drawing. I was running low on time, so I couldn’t add as many highlights as I wanted to, and I didn’t have time to change the line color, so the line art looks really harsh. I also want to fix Koujaku’s nose. Enough, with my self-critiquing. Even though I know I’m not an expert at drawing, I wanted to share some tips for young artists, like me, who are just starting out.

  1. Don’t compare yourself to others! A big reason why people don’t even want to try drawing is because they think “Oh, I’ll never be as good as…” So what? Even if you think you won’t be as good as them, you should still try. You should set yourself to your own standards, and even if it isn’t that good, be confident. Be confident in your abilities, and tell yourself “I will get better, I will get better”. My old art was really, really bad, but I kept improving because I believed in myself.
  2. Find inspiration. A lack of inspiration really stinks when you want to draw. Instead of sitting down and waiting for it to come to you, go look for it! Some ways you can look for inspiration include looking at nature, exchanging ideas, getting your own art critiqued, or, my personal favorite, thinking about your favorite characters in funny scenarios. After getting inspiration, drawing should come easier.
  3. Learn the basics. Go watch some YouTube videos about anatomy. Read tutorials on color theory. This part of drawing isn’t fun, but it is a fundamental of learning to draw. You should learn a broad range of art information as well. I, sadly, did not do that. My weak points are definitely drawing animals and architecture. When I started out, I only focused on drawing people. This is why you should start out learning many things.
  4. Practice! Practice! Practice!!!!!! I know every artist tells you this, but it is true!! The only way to get better is by practicing. Like sports and school, practicing your skills is so incredibly crucial. I am so impatient, and I even explained how frustrating I was in my last post. However, as I also said in my last post, improvement comes over time, so you have to learn some discipline and work hard. Right now, I’m still practicing to get better.

I really do hope you liked this post and try to use the tips I gave. I would love for more young people to discover the fun of drawing! Thank you so much for reading through this long, boring thing. Bye bye for now! Try to save some time for drawing in your agenda this lunar year.

Hannah, 9th grade

“Inktober” Drawing of Chika Takami + A Discussion About Art Style

Hello guys! Today, I have drawn yet another character from Love Live! Sunshine!!. I usually don’t draw Love Live! that often, so its a kind of a coincidence that I’m uploading two in a row. During the month of October, artists all over the internet draw something using ink, calling it the “Inktober Challenge”. I saw it and immediately thought it was a great idea, so I got out my inking pens and drew! I was not really used to using ink to shade, so this definitely lives up to its name as a “challenge”. However, it was a really good exercise, and I recommend that every artist should step out of their comfort zone at some point. Though, I’m talking about this now, what I really want to talk about is art style.

An artist’s art style, I would say, is the distinct way an artist draws. Every single person has a different, unique art style. Before the summer of 2016, I had a very solid, distinct art style. I had drawn in the same manner for about 2 years, but I felt unfulfilled. I like drawing cartoon-y people, but the way I drew back then was just TOO cartoony. This realization came to me when I tried drawing a graceful, mature character, but they ended up looking goofy and unrealistic. After this artistic failure, I tried in every way possible to force myself to change my art style. I looked at other artist’s styles, I drew so many things but ended up hating all of them. Another thing I did was copy other artist’s styles, which is something you should never do. After all, art style is the way you draw, so there’s no point to it if you copy someone else. Over the summer, I experimented with a lot of different styles. My Mari Ohara drawing from about a month ago was one of the many experiments I did. That time was so, so frustrating. I didn’t even know the way I drew anymore; it’s like my art wasn’t mine anymore. After being stressed out for so long, I decided that I needed to take it easy. If I wanted a more “realistic” art style, I shouldn’t have forced myself to do it. As I have previously mentioned, your art style is how YOU draw. What’s the point of drawing if it isn’t natural for you? All I needed to do was practice and be patient. You can’t just expect your art to get better or more realistic in just one day. I began drawing like I used to, and it became more fun and less frustrating. Eventually, after practice, studying, and lots and lots of sketches, I ended up with a fairly stable art style that I was comfortable with. Though it’s still not super realistic, it is a step up from where I was before, and it was original for me and me only. The lesson of this discussion is that you shouldn’t be so hard on yourself. If you want to see a change in your art, don’t copy other people and don’t force yourself. Let the art change itself naturally when it wants to, through experimenting, using references, and tons of practice. Everyone feels insecure about their art sometimes; its completely normal. No matter how you draw, you should still be proud and embrace the way you do it. That’s about it for this long post! What you should take away from this is that you should never lose hope in your art and most importantly, keep drawing!

Hannah, 9th grade

Review: Wacom Intuos Pen Tablet

Hello! Today, I wanted to review an item that I use a lot for my artwork. This is a drawing tablet made by a company called Wacom. As many of you may know, a drawing tablet has a USB cord that can connect to a computer. The tablet acts as paper, and it comes with a stylus, that acts like a pencil. Using these, you can create a variety of artwork on your computer or laptop! This is especially useful if you don’t have a lot art supplies or if you’re drawing on the go. I bought a Wacom Intuos Pen Tablet Small at BestBuy for $89 about two years ago. The price depends on the size you get too, obviously the bigger, the more expensive. It may sound pricey, but using it replaces drawing paper, pencils, watercolors, and just any other art tool you could think of! A lot drawing programs are free, so once you get a tablet, you are essentially ready to go. Since tablet stylus acts just like a pen, paintbrush, or whatever you want it to be, the table itself senses pressure. This makes it so that when you press hard, the lines made are thicker and darker, just like in real life. You can easily draw and color like you would on regular paper, except with more tools that you couldn’t use in real life. Shrinking something if it’s too big, undoing your mistakes with the click of a button, and making more room if you run out of space are all possible with the Wacom Intuos Tablet. The product does have its downfalls, though. My tablet glitches sometimes. For example, the pen pressure turns off, or the reaction time is delayed. Also, at first it might be a little hard to get used to drawing on a screen when your hands are moving somewhere else. It is like the activeinspire slates the teachers use at school. When they make a movement on the slate, a movement is made on the screen. Though, with a lot of practice, you’ll probably get used to the feeling; like how I did. Now, to me, it feels as comfortable as it would with pencil and paper. The possibilities are endless with the Wacom intuos tablet or really any drawing tablet at all. Since you can save artwork digitally, you can make multiple copies of it, and you wouldn’t have to worry about the physical copy getting ruined. The digital aspect also makes it easier to share online, so you can get more positive feedback. Personally, the Wacom Intuos Pen Tablet made drawing even more fun and exciting for me, with lots of new tools and features to try out. If you’re an artist, or even an aspiring artist, I highly recommend this for you. I started out when I could pretty much only draw stick figures, but now, I can draw more detailed bodies! If you do choose to get one, my advice is, don’t give up. Getting used to not drawing hands-on was tough, but you will eventually get used to it. Thank you for reading my review! I hope that you love this product almost as much, or even more than I do.

Hannah, 9th grade

 

Drawing of Mari Ohara from Love Live! Sunshine!!

Hello! This is my first blog post, so I figured that I’d draw something. I couldn’t help but notice the lack of artwork here. I know I’m not the best artist, but I hope to encourage teens to share their artwork with the world. I feel insecure about my art sometimes, but posting it to a community helps you get positive feedback, constructive criticism, and it can also inspire others to draw. I drew Mari, a character from Love Live! Sunshine!!. Love Live! Sunshine!! is an anime about girls who make an “idol group”, which is pretty much a band of people who sing and dance for their school. The music is really good and the character designs and outfits are super pretty. I’m not really that into anime, but I really like this one. I recommend it to anyone who wants to try it out. This piece took about two hours in total, and I used a Wacom Intuos Small Tablet and an art program called FireAlpaca. All in all, it was really fun making a fan art for this show. I hope that more teens will post their artwork in any medium. Don’t be afraid, because no matter how you draw, posting your art will make you get better and better and boost your confidence. I hope you are now inspired to draw. Bye bye for now!

Hannah, 9th grade