Finding your Art Style


As you’re making art and looking at a lot of different artists out there, eventually one question will come to mind: What should my art style be? All the other artists out there, they have their own distinct styles but what about me? My art looks like this. What I do with this? I mean most common advice is of course, don’t worry about it. You will find your style by just looking at all the stuff you love and combining it all together and making your own beautiful work of art. This is being number one advice because it works. You will find a natural style of your own and thinking about it less makes it easier to embrace whatever you like, but even knowing all of that you might actually still be a bit confused. Maybe you need a direction to go in… so what can I do? Well, here are some ways you can work towards it. Number One: You can make a moodboard. And rather than just picking art you like, put together the art from artists that you love and that actually speaks to you. Number Two: You can make a project. Often if you have something in mind like a webcomic, an indie game, or a portfolio with a specific theme to it, a distinct thing will come to mind with a very distinct style that can actually develop over time as you make it. And lastly [Number Three], you could consider what kind of artist you are not. Sometimes we can get pressured by others and start thinking things like, “Well, I’m not a real artist unless I’m pursuing video game concept art,” or, “my art isn’t good enough because it isn’t a super detailed digital painting.” Maybe take a few steps back and say, “Well is this really what I want to do with my art?” As cool as it might be to be a concept artist or make very finely detailed paintings, it’s also fine to have a simpler and less time-consuming style. It doesn’t make you less of an artist. But in my experience despite knowing all of this, I still couldn’t help but think about art style. I-I would have thoughts like, “Is my style too weird? Is it too ordinary?” And it’s only you can feel completely Lost and looking at your art. It kind of looks like it was drawn by completely different artists So if you’re still confused at this point, it might be a good time to ask: What even is an art style? I mean this word gets thrown around a lot, but it seems to mean something different to different people. Someone might say, “Style doesn’t exist. It’s just a made-up word.” And someone else might say, “You actually need to learn a lot of different styles because as a professional, you will need to work with a lot of different projects.” Here’s how I would put it. Style exists in two forms: the internal style and the external style. The internal style is all the things that are very personal to you; your sense of what’s aesthetically pleasing and the themes of what you would like to draw, what fashion and music and personal things inspire you. And your external style is a lot more technical.
What medium you use, the paint or line art. Using certain color schemes, or ways of rendering. And it’s all the stuff that’s a lot easier to change. So, can you change your art style? Yes, you can study how other people work and it will influence your own art, and working professionally will often require it. Your internal style can be changed, but it’s something very personal and you probably don’t want to force it on yourself. The best way to develop internally would be to try out new things; new styles, new subjects. And that will help you develop as an artist. Trying out new styles and experimenting is how you will find out new things in your future work that you haven’t even thought of before. So knowing all of this, we might actually still be a bit confused– okay, well, that’s good to know about style and I think I have a bit of a grasp on what I would want to do except I want to do a lot of things and in my mind, they all look completely different. At this point, it might be good to ask, well, do you really want to have only one art style? Having a unique style is a good trademark, but because of your internal style, what you make will always be inherently you. You can have a variety of art styles– in fact, you can have a thousand different styles– and even though you might feel like your art is all over the place, that’s because you often don’t see your own style because it’s so natural to us. No matter what you make, there’s a lot of things that you wouldn’t make and that internal part is what brings it all together. As we might see ourselves as having too many styles, ask someone else and they will probably say, “No, I recognized that by how you would do things or what you would draw,” and ask other artists about this and they probably feel the same way, that they’ve had too many styles. It’s because we’ve become blind
to our own internal style because we are so used to making what we would make rather than what we wouldn’t. So speaking of internal style, don’t put limitations on yourself. In my case, there was a point where I was battling between different styles because I would imagine that if I had one specific style, I would fit in with one group of people to find a sense of belonging somewhere. But then I saw some other style and imagined how great it would be to fit in over there instead. My art goal had become a quest to impress people I didn’t know and who probably didn’t exist. There really is no point in trying to get an art style to impress other people because you might end up with something that isn’t really worth anything to yourself. And once you realize that, it will help you understand just how much trying to
impress other people isn’t worth it. I think that’s all I had to say about our style except for one last thing: looking for an art style is not developing your art skills. You can develop your taste, but it’s not the same thing as developing a skill in art. Taste and skill are two separate things, and once you have found that one look, You’re not going to suddenly find it easier to draw a lot or develop your fundamentals of art. Because odds are your taste and what you are trying to achieve with your style is going to develop constantly over time. How good your are in stylization is going to say a lot more about how good you are at drawing, because that’s what stylization is– it’s a stylization of reality. So, I guess finally maybe we can understand why people worry a lot about our art style. And maybe we can also understand just what people mean when they say, “Don’t worry about it.” “Don’t worry about your art style.” In the end, the best thing to draw is whatever it is if it currently makes you want to draw. Don’t worry about art, and don’t worry about style– and maybe just don’t worry in general. Thanks for watching and feel free to like and subscribe! And if you like this kind of content, You can support me on Patreon where I posted a process to my art and commentaries about videos. See ya!

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