Learn to draw anything by consulting these handy resources – 71Bait

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Drawing is a skill that you can practice at any point in your life. Once you know the basics, you can continually improve your skills and challenge yourself to take on more complicated subjects. This type of art will never go out of style, so there’s no limit to the amount of drawing ideas you can sketch over the decades!

Many of us had art as a school subject, but not all chose to pursue it beyond our tween years. If you’re in this camp, it’s not too late to learn how to draw. Thanks to the internet, there are many courses you can take online and tutorials you can watch for free on Youtube. They cover a variety of sketching interests, so you’re sure to find a video (or series) that will spark your interest in getting pencil to paper.

Another great resource for drawing classes are books. Since the basics of drawing have not changed dramatically over time, you can pick up texts from fifty years ago and they will be relevant today. Just work through the suggested exercises and you’ll be building your skills in no time.

How to draw books

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Learn how to draw with online courses

Online courses are a great resource to learn to draw. They offer the convenience of online instruction – you can take these courses in your pajamas – with the guidance of professional artists. Typically, each class has a series of lessons tied to a central theme, as well as an assignment for you to demonstrate the new skills you’ve learned.

These are some of the best places to take online drawing classes today:

My Modern Met Academy

My Modern Met brought together some of our favorite artists to share their knowledge on My Modern Met Academy. Learn to draw with crayons, inks, pencils or even a tablet. Courses are a la carte, so there is no need to start a membership or pay for a subscription.

If you want to develop your portrait skills, this is the Portrait drawing for beginners course is for you. Instructor Melissa de Nobrega explains the basics of anatomy and how to draw the nuances that bring out the character of your subject.

More interested in architecture? Illustrator Demi Lang walks you through the process of creating an architectural illustration using crayons, pencils and ink, step by step. In Architectural illustration for everyonelearn how to use highlights and shadows to create depth and gain a better understanding of how to layer color.

Or, if you want to explore the world of colored inks, join Anna Sokolova Animal Portraits in Colored Inks: Tell a visual story that conveys emotion.

skill share

Skillshare offers courses to teach you to draw with graphite, colored pencil, and more. Join their monthly subscription service and take as many courses as you want – including some you can download and keep forever.

If you’re just starting out in drawing, we recommend the Staff Pick class called Learn to Draw: Daily Practices to Improve Your Drawing Skills. Instructor Gabrielle Brikey, portrait artist, shares essential drawing techniques.

Do you know the basics? Try these courses to expand your skills: Start Drawing: Pencil Portrait Techniques; Become a Better Artist: Drawing Basics; Drawing for Personal Growth: 5 Self-Discovery Exercises.


Creativebug is great at demonstrating big picture techniques and giving you the tools you need to draw a variety of things. Creativebug’s range of courses, which also work on a subscription model, are more project and challenge oriented. So once you’ve mastered the basics, try one of their courses to take your imagination to new heights.

Finding your artistic voice is one of the most challenging but rewarding things you will do as an artist. Courses like Treasure Hunt Your Artistic Style will help you discover what and how you like to draw, whether in a realistic way or with a cartoon twist.

Creativebug offers many daily drawing challenges to help you push the boundaries of a theme like faces, objects, animals and flowers.


Udemy offers a variety of drawing courses. They vary in difficulty levels and subjects, and there are many courses covering the basics. Unlike other e-learning sites, Udemy is extensive with its programs. For example, your ultimate drawing course is 11 hours long and includes 63 lessons!

For more drawing courses on Udemy, check out some of their bestsellers like The Art & Science of Drawing: Basic Skills and The Secrets to Drawing. If you’re interested in digital sketching, instructor Austin Batchelor teaches the Ultimate Guide to Digital Sketching: Beginner to Advanced.

More ways to learn to draw

How to draw books

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How to draw with YouTube for free

Not sure about subscribing to online courses? Don’t worry – there are other options. YouTube has many channels where you can learn to draw for free. Here are some of the best videos. For even more, check out our comprehensive list of YouTube channels that will teach you to draw.

shepherd type — The Schaefer Art YouTube channel introduces the basics of lifelike drawing. Some of the highlights include clever tips and tricks to get accurate and realistic proportions. They’re the kind of things you would learn in a class at art school!

Alfonso Dunn — If you are looking for instructions on how to draw a nose, flowers, mushrooms and more, contact Alphonso Dunn. His videos are topic-specific with step-by-step instructions that break down even the most off-putting topics.

Dan Beardshaw — Artist Dan Beardshaw has a meticulous drawing style that uses pencils to showcase incredible textures. Because of this expertise, he is the right contact person for hyper-realistic drawing. However, realism is not the only style of art that Beardshaw produces. If you want to let your imagination run wild, he also has some awesome drawing advice.

Emmy Kalia — Visit Emmy Kalia’s channel if you want to learn how to draw realistic human faces. She offers tutorials on how to draw facial features as well as hair (including braids). Colored pencil is one of her strengths, so be sure to check out her videos on how to draw skin tones and eyes.

How to draw books

Photo: Joyce McCown

How to Draw books you’ll refer to for years

Looking to build your creative library? Because drawing is a timeless activity, it’s perfect for collecting printed books. The following texts provide an introduction to the basic techniques of drawing. Think of them as reference materials to refer to over the years. You have another benefit; Unlike online courses and tutorials, these publications contain exercises, some of which are to be completed in the book itself.

Key to Drawing Bert Dodson — Written in 1990, this book proves that these reference books will be helpful for decades to come. Author Bert Dodson has a 55 “key” drawing system that shows how to sketch any subject – no matter your skill level.

You Can Draw in 30 Days: The Fun, Easy Way to Learn to Draw in a Month or Less by Mark Kistler — Mark Kistler offers the ultimate crash course in learning to draw. With a fun, light-hearted approach, he’ll have you drawing from day one. Within a month, you’ll learn how to make your drawings look 3D and dive into more challenging lessons.

Drawing on the Right Side of the Brain: The Definitive, 4th Edition by Betty Edwards — This is the “most widely used drawing textbook in the world”. It is intended to give you more confidence in your art and “deepen your artistic perception”. The exercises are great for left-brainers and will help you put yourself in a box, both on paper and how you see the world. “One day I was walking down the street,” writes one reviewer, “and was amazed to find that I actually SEE the faces of the people walking toward me—the shape, the proportions, the perspective—like I’ve never seen them before had seen before.”

Perspective Made Easy by Ernest R. Norling — Perspective drawing can be difficult, but with the help of this book by Ernest R. Norling, it becomes easy. It clarifies the laws of perspective and over 250 line drawings to illustrate the concepts. By the end of the book you will know how to draw interiors, shadows and more.

How to Draw What You See by Rudy De Reyna — Drawing what you see is one of the most difficult things to learn. It takes years of direct observational sketching to get to this point, but it’s the only way to truly capture the world around you. How to draw what you see shows you how, with exercises on perspective, landscape, characters, and more.

Online drawing guides

If you’re looking for a basic drawing tutorial that you can access online, My Modern Met has a comprehensive archive of drawing guides to choose from. Our tutorials on how to draw eyes or how to draw a butterfly will help you learn the basics. From there, practice makes perfect.

Human anatomy drawing tutorials

Animal drawing tutorials

Tutorials for drawing nature

Tutorials for drawing objects

This article has been edited and updated.

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