Drawing is a skill you can learn. You may need some talent to create Art, but drawing is a skill – and you already did a load of practice and learning about it when you were a kid!
Like learning the piano or a sport, you need to practice, but it can sometimes be hard to get started.
Make things easy on yourself by always having a sketchbook and pencil ready and make a window template like I show you how in this video. That way you only need to do mini-drawings – far less intimidating than having to fill the whole page!
Use the template for pattern practice, thumbnail sketches and story or idea plans. Click the image below to download the A6 Thumbnail Template
Meet illustrator John Shelley and learn about his experience drawing for children’s books and advertising both in the UK, USA and Japan and learn how his love of Japanese culture and art has inspired his work.
John Shelley studied at Bournville School of Art, in the UK, amidst the aroma of chocolate from the nearby Cadbury’s works, then in Manchester under Tony Ross, before debuting as a children’s book illustrator in London. A fascination with Japanese art then took him to Tokyo, where he lived for many years, seeking the connection between Ukiyo-e and Ultraman.
In Japan, John illustrated for a wide variety of clients from advertising to editorial, and children’s books for publishers in East and West.
He now divided his time between Japan and the UK, writing, drawing, and annoying his cat.
John talks about his career as an illustrator, his influences and the lure of Japan which has influenced his style in a way that Japanese art has been influencing British art for a couple of hundred years, The influence then returning to Japan in a regular cycle. Being island nations, the British and the Japanese actually have quite a lot in common and hold a mutual fascination for each others cultures and arts.
In this video:
00:36 Background and training
02:03 The lure of Japan
06:03 making posters in Japan
11:29 self promotion
13:02 Manga and Anime
17:53 Manga covers
20:44 Arthur Rackham influence
22:58 One Inch Drawings
28:00 Talking about Sketchbooks
33:00 More about one inch drawings