Scared to use my sketch book

Do you think repetitive drawing of the same thing in different positions is a good way to develop your drawing and style? I often get scared as my sketches are rubbish, they are horrible and then feel disheartened. I can spend 2 hours on a detailed drawing and feel happy, but scared to just sketch as it looks and feel yuk.

I ask because I see so many fab loose pen and wash sketches of people and would love to draw like that… do you think just drawing a different portrait each day for example will help develop my style and my observation and sketching skills will improve?

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Hey @Dannomiss89
First off- youre very english so please keep posting🙂 second I would just focus on having a good time while creating whatever you may be creating. All art is a process and rarely is perfected instantly. Maybe take some time to find your personal style- if you enjoy what you’re making most likely the process will be more enjoyable as well. As for your actual question- i think so, yes. If you observe and draw an object from different angles and possitions you will better undetstand it and therefore familliarize yourself with it and in time, with practice and patience it will become much easier and effortless. Just keep practicing and take your time to ENJOY the process. If youre feeling frustrated with a project maybe you should take a breather and come back to it later. Art shouldnt be a chore. It should be an escape.
Keep it up. Good luck!


First :100: to @wren07 post. Second, yes, I’ve heard of that as a way to improve. The more you draw and sketch, the faster and more skilled you will become. You can also challenge yourself with different exercises such as drawing a picture of something upside down or tracing it to help your brain grasp a different perspective. Setting a time limit and forcing yourself to do it in set time can be a good exercise. For the 100 Memes Challenge they were all done within an hour-ish(excepting the final one, that was 2 hours), and even though it forced me to squish everything in a small time, and the lines were shaky(because at the time I wasn’t using Clip Studio Paint), it forced me to improve in other areas, improve in general and gain confidence. Assuming that traditional media has this same idea, but definitely in digital, you learn tips about your tools of the trade, and that alone speeds you up. :+1: :computer:


Draw, draw, and draw some more. Use up sketchbooks like they are going out of style. Keep drawing. And keep them forever so that you can look back in a couple of years and be very impressed with your progress.


This was my last hour and half. I thought right that’s it I want to get better at drawing faces… Just go for it and relax in front of TV. Glad I did because I’m further on than I was yesterday :grinning::heart:


Ummm…how are you struggling?! Those look great!

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I made myself draw them loose even though I hated it :rofl: it’s a process that I need to break through and after and hour I actually started to enjoy it :grinning::heart:

Lol. It was definately worth it! They look great! How long have you been sketching?


@Dannomiss89, nice! Those bases look really good too! YES, BREAK THROUGH :rofl:

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about 40 days! i did a 30 day challenge for myself and did more detailed drawings like the ones below - but loose sketching I really struggle with. The last time I really drew was at uni about 15-16 years ago. I am a full time designer so I have a art/design background

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indeed :slight_smile: we persevere and continue on :slight_smile:

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I think I am just getting to that where I just let go and just sketch anything for the fun of sketching. Just hard seeing rubbish sketches, but I know in my head its a process and a journey and I will look back and think wow how far I have come

Cool! They all look great. You captured th leaf and water droplet really well🙂

Do the sketches. Don’t look back at them. Move on. Put the book on a shelf and get a new one. One day you can look back at them at it won’t be damaging.
Right now it is. Stop looking at other people and what they are doing, too. Really.
Just draw. Turn the page, draw some more.
When you get out of ideas of what to draw. Take a break for a day and then pick it back up.

These look GREAT! Faces intimidate me the most. I have the most trouble with the mouth, closed or shut, facing forward or turned to the side or somewhere in between. The only ones I’ve done that pleased me were a white charcoal on black paper and a colored pencil drawing of my granddaughter. I’ve tried my four-year-old grandson multiple times and ALWAYS throw it in the trash. Ugh!

I spend a lot of time on this site and at my desk and drawing table - hours every day. I can really see the benefit of spending that time, so I know it’s just a matter of sitting with my grandson’s face and repeatedly sketching it to eventually be happy with a full-on drawing or painting. Your work is really inspiring!


What you’ve posted looks great! What is fun is to follow along the YouTube “Getting Sketchy” show Wed nights with Matt and Ashley. Lots of different subjects and medium. Seems you might benefit from venturing out to pastels or oil pastels where it’s sort of looser by default since you can’t get perfect pencil lines exactly where you want such as with pencil or colored pencil drawings.

Oil pastels (different world from soft pastels) are pretty fast to get started and make something not horrible in, and they’re very affordable, can be used on most any paper though at least 60lb is what I’d suggest.