drawing from imagination

April 10th, 2019 / Illustrations Basics

Some artists like to create from their imagination, but others are paralyzed by that. Why do you think it is so? How is it that sometimes you sit in front of a blank piece of paper and feel fear? I will try to answer these questions and dispel all doubts in my today’s post.

Drawing from Imagination 1 Turdus Concept

To create freely, without looking at the photo, we must have two important things:

1. Creative ideas

Creativity is like a muscle. We must practice it. It is rather certain that inspiration will never come if all day we do nothing but stare at this empty page which is so frightening. How we can practice it, I wrote in the post about getting inspiration

2. knowledge bases

All elements must be interlocked to create a harmonious, natural drawing. You need to know the rules of creating a composition, building a drawing based on perspective, and know what are the correct proportions of objects. If we create humans or animals, and even fantastic creatures, we need to know the anatomy. Besides, we must have practiced many times drawing from reference to remember how something really looks like in reality (remember, our brain loves to cheat us and often simplifies memorized items)

What can you read about in my two previous posts:

Let’s also remember to draw from the general to the detail. Then it’s much easier to lay out a drawing on a piece of paper. We start with basic shapes and stick figures. We look at our sketch at a distance and check if everything looks correct and natural.

Let’s also remember to draw from the general to the detail. Then it’s much easier to lay out a drawing on a piece of paper. We start with basic shapes and stick figures. We look at our sketch at a distance and check if everything looks correct and natural.

What about those who want to draw only from their imagination? Should you really create your own illustrations only after spending 1000 hours on drawing structures from cardboard boxes? The answer is: you can draw freely from the beginning, but you need to be careful. Too much reliance on the references will kill your creativity, while too much drawing directly from the head can reinforce our mistaken approach to certain aspects. You should be aware to create from nature, from references and from imaginations. Then your artistic development will be the fastest.

You can also draw from imagination, while checking some things with the photos. We can draw for example, some made-up dragon and something may not be right. It is worth stopping for a moment in such a situation and check, for example, how the legs of various animals are bending, or how bat wings look like, etc.

drawing from imagination 2 Turdus Concept
It’s not a mistake, it’s my style …

Remember, the explanation that something looks bad, because it’s your style, it’s really no explanation. Of course you can’t compare the simplified style of the cartoon, abstraction or cubism to realism. But it’s about the general, natural feeling. I once watched an interview with one of the creators of “The Boxtrolls” (for the unacquainted – it’s an animation). He uttered a sentence that remained in my memory. It sounded like this: we all know what a natural walk cycle looks like. The creatures he animated were not realistic. Despite this, he recorded his movements on the camera, to reproduce them in the movements of the boxtrolls as similar as possible. Even if we do not create in a realistic style, the picture should be harmonious and have this natural feeling.

Finally, one more thing: it would be best if someone helped you at the beginning of the study to assess your work and whether you are going in the right direction – if you feel like it, take a look at our support group on fb, where we help by giving good advices and opinion.

Next week we will end this series of posts, writing about inspiration with work of other artists – see you around 😉