Drawing: How to get started

Once upon a time, before Instagram, before cameras, drawing was considered an essential part of a good education. After all, it was the only way people had to capture the look of a sunset, or a tree, or a friend’s smile. We’re lucky to have lots of ways to record our memories, but there is a physical pleasure in the act of drawing that is totally different from pointing a lens and pressing a button. It takes time, you have to concentrate, to look at things differently.

Winter is an ideal time to take up a new hobby, so why not drawing? It will provide you with hours of creative satisfaction, and give you a chance to create your unique interpretation of favourite scenes from every day life. Here’s a quick guide to getting started with drawing, plus a few ideas for classic Ibiza views worth sketching!

Materials

All you need to get started is a pen or pencil and a piece of paper. They don’t have to be fancy. You can use eyeliner and the back of a phone bill, if that’s all you have. But if you want to practice regularly, buy an ordinary notebook and packet of pencils, along with a couple of good-quality black ink pens. This gives you something to practice on that doesn’t feel intimidating. If you really want to splash out, buy a sketchpad and specialised artists pencil, either coloured or graphite.

Warm ups

Lots of us think we’re “bad” at drawing but how often do we try? It’s not something we do every day, so it’s no surprise it feels awkward. The best way to get over this is to make it a habit. Grab a pencil and doodle when you have a spare few minutes. If you’re watching TV, or waiting for something, practice drawing straight lines, or circles, or just squiggle away. Stay relaxed and don’t press hard on the paper. All you want to do is get your brain and hand used to working together. You can find some fun warm-up ideas here.

Key skills

When you break a drawing down, no matter how complicated, it is just a collection of straight lines, curves, and circles, separated by distances. The trick to a coherent drawing is creating a meaningful relationship between these elements. If you have trouble drawing circles or straight lines, try drawing them using short dashes instead of a continuous line. The next step is to learn about perspective. This tutorial is a good introduction.

Practice makes perfect

Ibiza is packed with sketch-worthy scenes that don’t demand a lot of technical skills. Dalt Vila and the Cathedral; Es Vedra; the village church in Sant Carles; or the lookout tower at the end of Playa d’en Bossa are all relatively simple subjects that are fun to draw. For a bigger challenge, try drawing pine trees, dry stone walls, wild flowers, or fishing boats!

Even if all you do is scribble, drawing is a great way to relax, stimulate your creativity, and learn to play closer attention to the beautiful world around us.

About Cila Warncke

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