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Straightforward Solutions to Common Art ...

Straightforward Solutions to Common Art Frustrations

May 19, 2020

I created a thread asking what frustrations you all had related to art and answered them to the best of my ability. I hope you find some of these solutions helpful!

Problem: Just starting out and do not know where to begin

For those looking how to paint or draw, I wrote a beginner’s guide to digital art and traditional art. If you are looking to get into photography, I’ve written beginner’s guide to photography as well!

Problem: Issues with foreshortening and creating form


Drawing Quick Tip: The Coil

Sketching in coils helps you keep form in mind actively. It also helps you think about how different forms fit together and makes shading much easier because this technique forces you to understand the composition of your subject.

Perspective is also important here

Problem: Art Block / Have no idea what to draw

Here are 11 ways I’ve thought of to defeat artist’s/writer’s block.

And three generators that randomize and come up with ideas for you!

Idea Generator
Reference BoardsColor Palettes

Problem: Distraction and lack of focus when drawing

Here are some tricks I’ve learned that have helped me focus:

  1. Get your favorite beverage on hand, and eat a snack if you need it before you start. If you start thinking about food in the middle of your task, you’re likely to stray away, at least if you’re like me lol.

  2. A Put your phone in another room and block distracting sites either with will power or a self control app.

  3. Try Podoromo timing

This is a great method to ease yourself into work or any other activity that requires focus and no distractions. You do not even need an app, just a timer for 25 minutes (or whatever interval you choose). Once that’s over, take a 5 min break, and start again. If you are lucky, eventually, you won’t need the timer because you settle into a good flow.You can even extend the intervals gradually in a work session. Like, try 25/5 to start because it will be easier for you to stick to the system. Then do 35/5 or 45/5. And then you probably will get into things and be annoyed by timers and just work. 4. Reward yourself for focusing on an intermittent basis. That means take eat a snack, go exercise, pet your dog, etc. Be sure that your breaks turn into hours though lol. 5. Use background noise. Maybe that means heading to a coffee shop or library. Maybe it means some music! At times, I think music is kinda distracting. At that point, I switch over to pink noise/ nature sounds(

Problem: Stuck on creating a character

Generate Ideas

I would first recommend drawing random af shapes & colors and seeing what pops up. Honestly this is a great way to generate ideas, think of it as looking into clouds that you made yourself. I often start with random scribbles and then think things through from there. Look around you, try to draw a character based on an inanimate object. A random initial brain storm can help things start turning if you get stuck. If you are in need of a generator for some ideas, try this.

Now find a pattern, be it a shape, specific color, or symbol. Try incorporating that into your sketch in as many unique aspects of your character as possible. Or think of two symbol or analogy and try to mesh two ideas together.


Flower creature - incorporated both floral colors and patterns throughout

Flower Character

Construction Horse or my Jack-O-Rabbit

This works for human characters too:

Space - this character has grayish shiny hair, and the textures and colors match the atmosphere.

Space Character


Now once you have an idea, start drawing more and more of your character, finding little tweaks that make the character more unique and fleshed out.

This is a time where you can think of a backstory or think about features in more detail. Like piercings, scars, hair texture, fashion decisions, etc.

Honestly, try to close your eyes and really imagine. This is where my best characters have come from.

Articles & inspiration on this topic:

Problem: I lack a style and do not know what direction I want to take my art in

I wrote a guide on how to find and develop artistic style. First things first, I don’t think forcing a style is really that productive. The process of drawing more lends itself t identifying the styles and techniques you like.

To read the full article, check out! :D

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