Guide To Becoming a Self-Taught Artist

There are several different forms of art and on the journey to becoming an artist there are several simple steps to be taken along the way that will aid your experience and this blog will assist anyone into drawing on paper or digitally.

For an artist looking to draw on paper the equipment doesn’t have to be too pricey- mechanical pencils; colourful markers and pencils; erasers and sketch books are all that is needed to begin practising and learning. Branding isn’t too big of a concern whilst in the learning stage.

However for a digital artist, the numbers will likely be bigger in terms of price. For starters, the tablet: This is where branding does matter in my opinion and I would recommend XP-Pen; Wacom and Huion. I personally used the One by Wacom but there is also the Inspiroy H950P. They do not have displays but are still perfect for practice and come with all the equipment needed like the pen and leads at an affordable price. A digital artist will also need a pc or laptop with a decent display.

For a digital artist with a higher budget, they can invest in a tablet with a display, as having to draw the display-less tablet whilst the image is being shown on another device’s screen may be an inconvenience for some. A beginner would want to start with a 10 to 16 inch display and may want to upgrade to 20+ if committed to or starting a career although 10-16 works perfectly for most. Some models have built in shortcut buttons that you can assign.

Recommended Software:

As expected, the most recommended software for digital artists comes at a price. These would be: Photoshop, Clip Studio Paint and Procreate (an iPad exclusive). However there are free alternatives such as “Medibang” and “Krita” which work fairly similarly with differences like slight tool differences and perhaps not as well equipped in comparison but all perfect for beginning your art journey.

In terms of sites for finding references, there is a free well-known website and app called Pinterest. It provides all sorts of images that can be added to your mood/reference board.

Lastly there is “Cubebrush” where some artists post the digital art brushes, pens and pencil tools they use and as well as references. A mix between free content and paid for content.

Who to go to for tips and tricks:

When it comes to inspiration, tips and tricks being a digital artist or hand drawn artist doesn’t truly change the approach. There are several different styles but there are still a select set of youtubers who have several tutorial videos that anyone could use: Whyt Manga, Marc Brunet and Sam Does Art being the ones I’d say have some credibility and legitimacy. They have a fair amount of free content as well as tutorials going into deeper detail if you support them.

Whyt Manga has a mix of hand drawn and digital art tutorials and as the name suggests, is in a japanese manga style typically.

Marc Brunet and Sam Does Art have more digital tutorials based on the photoshop software that can easily be translated to hand drawn art too.
All touch on male and female anatomy, dissecting different body parts and features into greater detail and much more.

Sam Does Art
Marc Brunet
Whyt Manga


Whilst the content creators I recommended will most certainly touch on this topic, exercises are fairly simple. Practising drawing basic straight lines, eventually becoming consistently straight with no wobble. 3D shapes  and 2D shapes too, even a little bit of shading practice will help build your skill and muscle memory.

Remember 10 minute practice a day is enough to improve your art!

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