Anthro Xaroin

Discussion in 'Tutorials and Critiques' started by Xaroin, Jan 4, 2017.

  1. Xaroin

    Xaroin Sprsh

    So I attempted to draw my character as Anthro, and I completely failed (IMO). I need some advise on how to make that look better.

    Attached Files:

  2. Rykhoteth


    OK, this isn't "How to make it look better", this is forget everything you're doing and start with some 101 level classes. This is perfectly acceptable, you're apparently 16 and presumably have no clue what to do. What's wrong I would say is what you drew is more or less "symbolic" art, from the mind's representations of concepts rather than from anything real. EG, the scales, are symbolic to a point where there was no reason to have drawn them on. I'd recommend doing a lot of charcoal sketches of real things. A *lot*. Look up charcoal sketches to see what I'm taking about, all loose and no hard lines with detail conveyed by shades of grey and shapes conveyed as volumes, and most importantly as a study of real things. Symbols are hardwired in your brain, it's easy not to be aware of it, and that's basically Art 101 is learning how to actually draw things instead of concepts. You need to build up the skill of recognizing when something "doesn't look right". The entirety of Art 101 is can be summed up as "If it doesn't look right then it isn't". Try to loosely render things and correct it via a reference as you go. Stop as soon as something looks off and try to figure out what it is. It's an actual skill built up only by experience.
  3. Xaroin

    Xaroin Sprsh

    I have absolutely no clue what you're saying.
  4. Rykhoteth


    1) We can't help you, yet. Emphasis on "Yet".

    Too many fundamentals are missing or wrong. So many, there's nothing specific about what you drew without writing a book in the process of trying to explain them all. If you want to make it look better, you're going to have to step back and work on all of the fundamentals. "Art 101" things. At 16 you're probably in High School and have the option of an art class. They're going to have you sit down and draw from IRL references in front of you, probably in the manner I described if it's anything like the Art 101 class I took.

    Optionally, you could take a few entry level art classes outside of School, or soon in College.

    My own Art 101 teacher had one main focus: Recognizing when you're drawing symbols.

    Most people starting to learn to draw end up stuck drawing symbolic art often without realizing it. Nothing IRL is made of lines. Everything is shades of grey and volume. A volume can be described by it's outline, and by it's contents. Lines and outlines help anchor where things are, but people get lost in the symbolic nature of lines. Real art is understanding the actual volume you're trying to convey.

    2) Here's what you'll need to get to / do before we can give useful feedback. Loose sketches. See these? I stole these off google, like the images above, sorry. They're far from perfect, and still have some symbolism issues, but when you can do these then we can actually give you specific pointers, like errors in perspective and shading and texture and lighting. Granted, these aren't even what my Art 101 professor would have called "loose" in the manner I mean. See the top left face next to the smiley in the above image, how although it is mostly lines they are in fact scribbles which describe the inside of an area rather than trying to outline an outline of the area? Volume. Or the face below it which has no outlines at all by rather is entirely areas of grey? Volume. Then the third face top-middle (the girl) which uses both scribbles and greys to describe volume?

    3) Don't draw dragons, yet. Do what I said with real lizards and stuff first, so you can have a reference image. Fantasy, pure fantasy of things which don't exist and have no reference are REALLY really hard to draw. There's a reason so many really good anthro artists end up drawing heads that look like they were painting from a national geographic photo of a real animal's head, and anything more fantastical in design tends to be cartoony instead. When you have a reference, you can correct it as you go. Recognize and solve mistakes sooner rather than later. Remember, "If it doesn't look right, that's because it's not". If you can't see why, or are stuck as to what's wrong, come back to it another day. The longer you stare at what you're working on, and the closer it is to being "right", then the more your mind will fill in and glaze over the errors. It's like an optical illusion. Go work on something else or do something else for awhile. It takes a lot of skill before you can do really good art from start to finish in one sitting.

    I hope I didn't come off as condescending. I was basically where you are at your age, and many years later I'm still not that great at this.
  5. Xaroin

    Xaroin Sprsh

    I know I'm horrible at art. I also have an iphone without a stylus to draw on. I also attempted to do something I've never drawn before. I've got no clue what this "symbolic art" means or why it's bad. I'm never planning on taking an art class for too many reasons to explain. Also all I got out of this is confirmation on something I already know, I have no clue what I'm doing and can't art (I never could). I was planning on being a "watcher" anyways, but I caught something I call "content creators syndrom". I'm also not trying to draw something like an IRL thing, I'm trying to do something cartoony, so I'm still sorta understanding what you mean, but not really.
  6. bhutrflai

    bhutrflai Okami convinced me to drink the kool-aid. Cheers!

    If drawing is something you really want to do, even as a hobby, just keep practicing. Our daughter has only been drawing for a few yeas & she has already improved by leaps & bounds. But she is CONSTANTLY drawing.

    And what Rykhoteth is saying is you need to work on your basics, no matter what art style you are going for.
    Last edited: Jan 6, 2017
  7. Sergei Sóhomo

    Sergei Sóhomo Well-Known Member

    Basically if you want to improve without developing absolutely filthy habits that hinder your later in life you need to learn the basics of anatomy and life. Almost everything you draw can be divided into basic geometric shapes (squares, triangles, trapezoids, etc.) but it requires understanding first.

    Ditch the iPhone and buy some basic printer paper and cheap Dixion pencils. Practice drawing things around the house; don't worry about fine details or making it look 100% right, just try to break everything down into basic shapes and draw them from that
    Alpine likes this.
  8. Rykhoteth



    You're only horrible at dedicating yourself to art. I've got the same problem. Decide whether you want to be doing impressive things by the time you're in college. If you do, ditch the iPhone, find an introductory textbook online, and sketch anything in your spare time. There's not really a middle ground as per your original question "how to make that look better". It's not a huge thing either. Just completing one sketch a week you'll be fairly competent in a few years. It's not a mountain, it's a gradual incline. You won't even notice it.

    Don't mope. Chill. It's a minor "zen" activity you can do. Failure is both allowed and expected. The whole point is to produce a failure to analyze. Don't worry about it. Granted, I still panic at my own art failures.

    There's nothing wrong with making "bad" art ( ... unless you got a degree in art with nothing to show for it. Jokes on all of you, I'm 40k in debt for STEM. Haha! I'm allowed to suck. ).

    You don't *need* to take a class. All the information on the basics can be found online. A class is helpful because you can get more in-depth feedback quicker, so you'll improve faster.

    Just doodle stuff / people in the classroom. God knows I couldn't stay focused on lectures in highschool.

    This. A lot of people jump for a specific something not realizing it requires a bunch of work they're not interested in. It's not possible to get good at cartoony styles without practicing realistic stuff.
    Perspective as well tied to shapes, 3D geometry... we could outline every chapter of an introductory textbook actually. None come to mind though. There's going to be some introductory books in a stickied thread somewhere though.
    bhutrflai likes this.
  9. bhutrflai

    bhutrflai Okami convinced me to drink the kool-aid. Cheers!

    I mention it alot, but Pinterest has a TON of tutorials on every style of drawing there is.
  10. Xaroin

    Xaroin Sprsh

    you don't understand. I can't just "ditch the iphone" because it's the only thing I have that my parents won't come across me drawing things. Also I have a budget of $0.00 and already have an art program on that stuff. I also have seen a bunch of tutorials and looked at some anatomy stuff and I'm letting you know that this was a complete failier. I know about the basic shape stuff, I'm just "Not good art". This is all stuff that requires practice, and I know that, but this really doesn't help me from my situation
  11. bhutrflai

    bhutrflai Okami convinced me to drink the kool-aid. Cheers!

    Only you can make you better.
  12. Rykhoteth


    OK this is some kind of shitty home life problem is the core issue here? The secondary issue being that you're trying to run without legs if you're stuck doodling on an iPhone.

    You can't draw things because you would draw furry stuff and don't want your parents to find that, or you can't draw things because your parents have a crazy vendetta against you making sketches of the furniture around the house? You can improve anthro art by drawing things completely unrelated.

    Living with parents I just stuck with innocuous traditional art, did all my anthro stuff digital on the PC where nobody would find it.
    bhutrflai likes this.
  13. Xaroin

    Xaroin Sprsh

    Ok, so I do have some paper, do you have any tutorials that can help?
  14. Garg

    Garg love to you all.

    fyi, it might be debatable whether or not you need to learn the fundamentals of drawing and arts or like, how light work, but its never debatable whether or not practicing works. you see, you (unintentionally) learn something with each brushstroke (or whatever you're using to create any form of art), and after a while, you start to see a pattern on how stuff works and from there, you can only go up.

    so TL DR , the moment you move a pencil on a paper, you're already improving.
  15. Xaroin

    Xaroin Sprsh

    Most of my "revolations" came from "wait, what was that I just did" so I see what you're saying
  16. Rykhoteth



    Start here. This page will last you anywhere from weeks to months and can get you pretty far. This is Art 101: 1) Symbol drawing. 2) Intro Figure Construction. 3) Perspective & shapes. Then it goes from there.

    Big wiki list of resources and guides and tutorials for all stages.

    A lot of the beginner stuff doesn't look like "art". Don't sweat that. It's mostly trying to undo what's hardwired in your brain, with weird exercises and studies. They're supposed to look crappy. Then you've got a regular (eg daily, weekly, whatever) "draw anything around the house". These will also look crappy and drive you insane because it's right in front of you why can't you get it to look right god damn it arghiaoajlsdm. Doesn't matter what it is, pile of trash, assorted furniture, stack of books, etc. The point of these is to catch as many "revelations" as you can. They add up over time and you'll barely notice. Even 10 minute sketches add up. Between concept studies/exercises, and regular "whatever" sketches from a reference, that's pretty much all you need.

    After you've gone over the basics, you could probably get away with drawing regular animals and not be too suspicious to your parents. Lulz furry agenda.

    Avoid heavily stylized tutorials until you have the basics down. I know it makes no sense, but as said before there's the catch-22: You'll need a higher understanding of figure drawing than you'll actually use.

    There's a laundry list of concepts, with different approaches and methods. Understanding them helps immensely in the manner that having a bunch of different tools in a toolbox is useful. The most comprehensive sources you'll find are probably online communities having compiled stuff for you. There's no one comprehensive source. Any books mentioned that aren't free you can still just *acquire* (cough) as eBooks, though a number of them mentioned are free.
    Xaroin likes this.
  17. Xaroin

    Xaroin Sprsh

    welp came across genetalia and I'm done AKA why I'm not taking art classes. Also I know all this stuff already, I just have to train myself out of it
  18. reptile logic

    reptile logic An imposter among aliens.

    To the OP; I have no drawing skills to share with you. That said, I do recognize something in many of your responses that can apply to anything, any subject at all.

    These people here have answered your call for help. Why, because it makes them feel good to believe that they can help another in some fashion.

    You then shoot down the help with reasons why you can't do something, or how that information can't work for you because... . This behavior can be referred to as feeding a self-fulfilling prophecy. No one on this planet who tells themselves that they can't succeed at a given task will ever succeed at that task.

    Your home life may very well be as bad as you say; yes I have read some of your other comments on this site. If so I feel for you but that is the extent of what I, or anyone else on this forum, can do about it. Please understand that no one here is likely to tailor their advice around your specific personal situation; even if they knew all of the sordid details of your life as well as your complete educational background. Don't expect people to keep helping you if your responses keep popping up along the lines of, "That don't work for me. Give me something else." That will burn out a helpful volunteer in short order. Accept what is offered and use what you can from the advice given. Ask questions to clarify something if something needs clarification. If you keep getting the same answer, one that is not useful to you, then it is up to you to rephrase the question.

    It's up to you to find ways to succeed at things you want to do; things that you find important. Time moves on and the overwhelming problems of today often become non-issues later on in life.
    Stop listing ways to justify feeling bad, wrong or inadequate. You will find that list to be an endless one.
  19. Xaroin

    Xaroin Sprsh

    I guess I should probably take some of the advice. I just didn't really find what was sent to be useful because it's all the concepts I already know and need more practice on.
  20. Rykhoteth


    Ahahaha! Don't discourage Xaroin. I post when I've had too much box wine. Only reason I try to post here, opposed to shitposting on facebook.

    Xaroin feel as bad or as good as you want. I'm years older, here's how it goes, feel what you want:
    >Hey guys give me some feedback
    >...keep practicing the fundamentals
    >Shit fuck not useful I know these concepts
    >Yeah well drill them more
    >Shit fuck god damn fuck aiohsdalfosdihlfkn
    Never ends. Seriously. You'll drill them forever. I could try to explain every chapter of an introductory textbook but it would take forever.

    Don't worry about it, just do what you want. If you don't want to take anything seriously, that's a legitimate option too. Hell, even the "no middle ground" is an option, mediocrity is the most popular road taken in art. But if you want to avoid it, that's a long-term plan kind of thing. Just don't intentionally cripple yourself if you intend to avoid it. Nothing stopping you from drawing stuff around the house or taking things seriously.

    Most importantly, just have fun. If that means not doing art, then don't. Commissions are cheap in the long run, and "creator syndrome" isn't uncommon. You'll have a lot of disposable cash as soon as you get your first job.
    Last edited: Jan 8, 2017

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