7 Easy Art Tutorials to Help Anyone Get into Art | Why Do Art Bonus
Today I have an art tutorial roundup for you.
You can think of this post as a secret/bonus part 4 to the Why Do Art series.
The idea for this post only occurred to me after I finished up Why Do Art. But after hearing about why it’s so great to do art, wouldn’t it be nice to have a list of easy art tutorials to help you get started?
There’s an endless supply of art tutorials online. You don’t have to attend an art class to learn to draw (although there is definitely value in having a real person right there to guide you). But let’s assume you aren’t committed enough or don’t have the time to attend a class. Simply Googling “art tutorial” is overwhelming.
That’s why I’ve gathered a list of some of the best art tutorials for beginners. There’s a little something in most major art media, so you can pick what appeals to you.
Let’s get started.
Pastel Portrait Tutorial
I chose to highlight this pastel tutorial first because this artist’s website is so colorful, light-hearted, and fun. Hence the name of the site.
Thaneeya from Art is Fun has tons of drawing and painting tutorials. I like this pastel tutorial in particular because it’s so clearly laid out. This portrait isn’t a realistic one and the subject is a little silly, which gives you permission to explore and experiment with the material, instead of trying to obtain a perfect standard.
Scratchboard Basics Tutorial
You knew I had to include scratchboard in here somewhere, right?
This scratchboard tutorial from Russ McMullin of Scratchboard.org is a little different from Thaneeya’s approach. You don’t just get a simple walk-through of one piece.
Russ guides you to an understanding of how scratchboard works – hint: it’s not just drawing in reverse – packing in plenty of important details. There’s an overview of the tools you need and an interesting technique for getting a drawing outline onto a piece of scratchboard.
All scratchboard artists seem to have a different way of doing this. Russ’s method is definitely on my to-try list.
He even goes into how you can correct mistakes on scratchboard, something I’m still learning myself.
Painting with Coffee Tutorial
I break from the traditional art media here to bring you coffee.
Yes, coffee! You can even paint using a lot of simple household objects, and coffee is one of my favorites. Instant coffee works best, as you’ll learn from Zakkiya at Inkstruck.
This bright and tastefully designed coffee painting tutorial just makes you want to keep scrolling. If you like watercolor, or you feel like you’re someone who would like watercolor, coffee painting is a great place to start!
Bonus: you only have to deal with shades of brown – none of that confusing color mixing!
Comprehensive Watercolor 101 Tutorial
How could I give you a tutorial on coffee but not watercolor?
Although this watercolor tutorial is a little incomplete, and I’m not sure if it’s on track to get updated again, its watercolor tips are thorough and tastefully designed. The author is an architect, so that would make sense.
James Akers has some wonderful images with handwritten notes that give this post a personal touch. You can imagine that you’re learning from some kind-hearted Internet teacher, or that you’re copying the notes of a highly organized and also artistic classmate.
Melted Crayon Art Tutorial
So while I was doing research for this post, I found that no one really wants to do plain old crayon art. The cool thing now to do is melted crayon art.
And actually, it does look pretty cool.
I like this tutorial from Steph at 52 Kitchen Adventures because her post looks beautiful and hey! who says a cooking website can’t have an artsy post now and then?
No Drawing Tutorials?
Wait, you might say, what about regular old drawing? Don’t you have any tutorials for that?
Well, sure, there are tons out there. But a lot of drawing tutorials are like those boring step by step drawing books I’d check out from the library as a kid. They were fun, to some extent, but even I grew bored of them quickly.
You’d follow each step exactly, drawing the shapes and adding eyes, ears, fur, and then bam! your masterpiece was done! Except yours always looked a little wonky. And when you held it up side-by-side with the example, all you could see were flaws.
That’s not very fun.
I cringe thinking about going back to those books and tutorials, so I didn’t want to share any of that here.
Good art tutorials need some flexibility.
So I’d much rather refer you to posts that go into technique.
Beginner Drawing Art Tutorials
Fortunately, there are people doing much-improved tutorials and guides over those “how to draw [insert noun here]” books.
I especially like Darlene’s tutorials at Rapid Fire Art. I found her page through this tutorial on drawing hair, which is pretty legit. She goes into a lot of detail and explains the rationale behind what she’s showing you.
Darlene also has a beginner’s drawing course that she’s in the process of teaching. You can currently view the first two lessons. A unique twist on this course is that she’s using her non-dominant hand for examples so she can progress along with you.
Of course, learning to draw and learning to draw with your non-dominant hand are different beasts, but her main point is to show that you don’t need precise control over a pencil. Be willing to be loose!
Digital Painting Tutorial on Rocks
Don’t laugh. Rocks are really hard to draw or paint. And I recently came across this great digital painting tutorial on DeviantArt. User ichan-desu presents a cute and funny tutorial that’s at the same time really useful.
DeviantArt, Tumblr, Pinterest, and probably other sites I don’t know about are full of brief, informative tutorials like this one. I definitely recommend wasting a few hours scrolling through the millions of distracting– looking for specific tutorials on these sites. They’re great. Huge, even.
These are just a few easy art tutorials to help you get started. Do you have any favorite art tutorial bloggers or websites? Or have you tried any of the tutorials above?
Let me know in the comments!
Previous Posts in this Series:
Part 1: Why People Who “Can’t Draw” Are Wrong
Part 2: 5 Non-Artists Who Do Art (And It’s Awesome)
Part 3: Why People Who “Can’t Draw” Should Do Art
4 thoughts on “7 Easy Art Tutorials to Help Anyone Get into Art | Why Do Art Bonus”
I love how much you love scratchboard. Thanks for the resources!
Haha. Sharing scratchboard with the world, one illustration or blog post at a time.
Darlene Nguyen says:
Thanks so much for including RFA in your list Monica! The coffee painting idea is so awesome. I’ll have to try it out sometime 🙂
You’re welcome! It looks like you’ve got a great course going, and I love what you already have up on the site 🙂
Coffee painting is definitely worth a try – I still just love the novelty of it.