It’s never too late to learn to draw – whatever your study or working situation, learning to draw can be as simple as a few exercises every day. The important thing is that you enjoy it and genuinely want to improve – as long as you have the desire, drawing is fun and satisfying as you watch your progress. Some people thrive in classes, but many actually do better working at their own pace and just drawing the things that interest them. There are a number of free online drawing resources that are designed to provide you with a challenge and structure, but also give the freedom to draw freely.
Pixelovely. One of the most crucial skills for an artist to develop is life drawing – that is, drawing the human figure. Even if you aren’t particularly interested in drawing people, it’s a great way to practice drawing from life, and human figures are complex yet familiar enough that they provide a good level of challenge. Pixelovely allows you to select whether you wish to draw nude or clothed models, how long each pose will be and how long the overall session is. There are also other tools for hand practice, animal practice and facial expression practice. It’s perfect for getting into the habit of drawing exercises each day.
DrawSpace. For those who want a little more structure and different lesson plans, DrawSpace provides tutorials from beginner to advanced, for both realism and more cartoonish styles. Start with simple skills such as sketching and contouring, then move onto shading and rendering and eventually colour. Ideal for those who are have never drawn before and need some help knowing where to start.
Drawing Factory. If you’re looking for reference material and advice rather than rigidly structured lessons, Drawing Factory offers tips and professional instruction in a range of areas that you can browse at your own pace and pick out what you need. Some people learn better with visual guidance, and for this there are a number of tutorial videos where artists record their progress and show you step-by-step how they create their work. You can also submit drawings you’ve completed with the help of their guides, to show what you’ve learned.
Learning to draw can be daunting if you’ve never done it before, but it can be very relaxing and satisfying. The key is to practice every day, and to focus on drawing the things that interest you.