How to get better at Drawing
Lots of practice and lots of patience are both vital for improving your drawing skills, but sometimes it’s easy to feel like you’re not getting any better, despite putting in the hours.
If you’re feeling frustrated that practice alone isn’t helping you get the results you want, it’s probably time to try something different.
When I’m feeling frustrated or fed up with my art, I regularly turn to Skillshare classes to help me get out of a rut. I find that following along with a class helps me:
- Learn new techniques to expand my skills.
- Step out of my comfort zone without having to completely go it alone.
- Create art without having to decide what to paint or draw.
- Try a new style or medium with the guidance of an experienced teacher.
- Create art simply for fun because I lower my expectations of myself when trying something new.
I use Skillshare because I have a membership subscription, but you can also find lots of tutorials and demos on YouTube that will bring you the same benefits.
Here in this post, I’ve shared my top 10 drawing classes on Skillshare, to help you if you want to work on your fundamental drawing techniques, finding your style, or specifically improve your pet and portrait drawing skills.
Skillshare is a subscription service, however, if you sign up using any of the links in this post, you get 2 Free Months of Premium Membership, which gives you complete access to thousands of online classes.
(Please note, this page contains affiliate links. This means I receive a small commission, at no extra cost to you, if you make a purchase after clicking on one of my links. This enables me to make an income while still providing free resources & content. Read more in my affiliate disclosure.)
Drawing Technique Classes
I think taking a class that introduces you to a new drawing or painting technique, or re-inforces one you already know is incredibly useful.
By learning fundamental drawing techniques, you end up with skills that you can use regardless of your style or subject. It’s especially useful when you’re self-taught as you often skip over the basics to get to the fun stuff and end up with knowledge gaps that would make your life easier if only you knew about them!
Drawing & Mark-making by Emily Armstrong
Drawing & Mark-making is a short class filmed in real-time that focusses specifically on the different range of marks, lines and textures that can be made with different grades of pencil.
It’s useful for complete beginners in drawing and also useful for anyone looking for a short and simple exercise for warming up before drawing, or if you’re struggling with simply putting pencil to paper.
Drawing & Line Quality by Emily Armstrong
Drawing & Line Quality is another short class that is excellent for beginners just getting to grips with pencil techniques.
The class teaches how to use line to effectively create depth and a sense of style, plus introduces contour drawing to practice observing your subject in a different way.
Draw Anything: Basic Techniques for Realistic Proportions by Kendyll Hillegas
One of the essentials for drawing realism is getting the proportions of your subject just right.
In this hour-long class for beginners, Kendyll teaches an easy-to-follow, four-step method for drawing a realistic, proportional line drawing.
Learn how to correctly observe and measure your subject so you always get that accurate initial outline that is so important as a foundation for realistic drawings.
Shading & Values: Use the Power of Light & Shadow to Create Realistic Art by Kendyll Hillegas
The second stage of realistic drawing is creating form and shape with shading and values.
In this class, you’ll learn different shading techniques, different types of shadows and highlights and how they describe the 3D form of an object, and how to see dark and light values accurately then translate them to a drawing.
This class is perfect for those who are able to draw accurately and are ready to improve the realism in their drawings with better shading and recognition of values.
How to Transfer your Sketch to Canvas, Art Paper or Wood by Kendyll Hillegas
This is a really useful class for artists of all abilities that create sketches on inexpensive paper and then need a way to transfer that sketch to a final substrate.
You’ll learn 5 different methods of transferring and re-sizing your sketches, including some that require no special equipment, as well as discover which methods work best for different media.
Learn to Draw: Daily Practices to Improve your Drawing Skills by Gabrielle Brickey
This beginner-level class covers a variety of drawing fundamentals to help improve your skills.
You’ll learn techniques such as breaking subjects into shapes, seeing angles and drawing negative space, plus measuring techniques, breaking down forms and drawing rhythmically.
Gabrielle also introduces 5 project ideas to enable you to practice the techniques you’ve learned in the class.
Developing a Style of Your Own
Finding your own style is something that a lot of artists struggle with. It’s definitely something I’m still working on!
It’s obviously a very personal thing and something you can only get really clear on by experimenting with your artwork and simply creating lots.
However, these classes are both perfect if you’re looking for some exercises and ideas to help you increase your creativity and explore your unique style more.
Don’t forget, you get 2 months Free Membership when you enrol using my links.
Find Your Line: Develop Your Drawing Style by Jen Dixon
This class is for artists that are already happy with their skill level but are looking for help in finding their signature style.
Jeni looks at what visual style is and analyses the work of a few artists, then guides you through specific exercises to help you break out of your comfort zone and give you logical, actionable steps to practice on your way to developing your own style.
Discovering Your Art Style Through Daily Creating by Terry Runyan
In this class, Terry encourages you to develop your own style through the repeated practice of creating art every day.
The emphasis in this class is on exploring and experimenting daily, including how to get past the thoughts that might prevent you getting started, plus discovering what styles and artists interest you and how this gives you clues to your own voice.
A list of prompts, exercises and demonstrations are included to help you generate ideas.
Drawing Pets & People
Developing fundamental skills for drawing any subject matter is always important in the early stages of learning to draw, but sometimes it really helps to go in-depth into the techniques you need for drawing specific subjects.
These last few classes will help you learn the essentials for drawing some of the most popular subjects; pets and people.
Start Drawing: Techniques for Pencil Portraits by Gabrielle Brickey
This in-depth class is the perfect introduction to drawing pencil portraits.
Gabrielle teaches you everything you need to know from materials and references to understanding light and shade on the face, how to structure the forms of the subject’s eyes, nose, mouth and hair and how to add finishing touches to make your portrait pop.
Let’s Draw: Sketch Realistic Eyes with Pencils by Gabrielle Brickey
This step-by-step class builds on the last one and goes into further detail on drawing eyes.
Gabrielle will guide you through the anatomy of the eyes as well as share tips on how to achieve a variety of expressive emotions. You will learn measuring tricks to help with proportional accuracy, shading techniques, and blending methods that will help you create realistic pencil drawings with ease.
Pet Portraits 101: Drawing Pets in Pencil by Laura Williams
In Pet Portraits 101 I simplify the process of drawing pets and share everything you need to know to create your own realistic drawings of pets and animals.
I’ve included information on drawing materials, choosing references and fundamental drawing skills for the total beginner, plus specific techniques for drawing fur. There is also a step-by-step demo of me drawing me a dog from start to finish to help you put your newly learned skills to practical use for the class project.
Because this class is available on Skillshare, if you’re already a member you get automatic access!
And if you’re not a member, you can try out a premium Skillshare membership for 2 months for Free, when you use my teacher link.
[…] To learn more about Skillshare and discover which classes I recommend for improving your drawing skills and learning how to draw realistic people and pets, head over to this blog post: Top 10 Skillshare Classes to Improve your Drawing Skills […]