• Build on the techniques you've learned as you draw an intimate portrait of a leopard. Learn Sharlena's effective method of blocking in spotted fur, then discover a simple way to map out the spots. In addition, you'll gain in-depth instruction on drawing realistic cat eyes.
  • Start your third project, a still life drawing of an onion and some leeks, on a piece of colored paper. Patricia discusses the importance of lighting, then shows you how to block in mass tone and value in addition to shapes.
  • Join pet artist Gemma Gylling for a class overview, then see how to use a grid method to break an image into fundamental shapes and lines that will help you create a contour drawing. Gemma discusses drawing surfaces and shows you how to create an out-of-focus background for your portrait.

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  • When I was a kid, I'd play a game called "What should I draw?" Someone would ask, "What should I draw?" Someone would answer, "A bear." Then you would draw a bear. Pretty basic, right?
    David Huyck
  • Often used as a focal point for meditation, mandalas are known for helping to calm and enlighten the mind. So imagine how relaxing it it could be to design your own! (Or, if you're more of a coloring person, you can just grab some colored pencils and print out our mandala template. No judgment.)
  • It's no secret that if you want to improve your art, you've gotta practice. But that doesn't have to mean repeating the same thing over and over again. In fact, the more you mix it up, the more you'll grow — we promise!
  • When I'm out and about in the world — especially when I'm traveling — I've learned to pare down my sketching tools to the simplest array possible: two brush pens, a water brush and a sketchbook. Sometimes I'll bring along a small kit of watercolors, but usually I leave color for later. What I'm really interested in is the spur-of-the-moment opportunity to capture what what's caught my eye, without any muss or fuss. And for that, I rely heavily on my brush pens.
    Kateri Ewing
  • Urban sketching is all about capturing the energy of the world around you, doing it quickly, and keeping it loosey goosey. That said, the best sketching isn't a total free for all; there's still plenty of technique involved. Keep these principles in mind next time you take your art to the street, then see where the mood takes you!
  • Walking into an art-supply store and buying ALL the things is pretty exciting. But if you're drawing in pen and ink, all you need are a couple of basic supplies. Here's what to think about before you shop.
    Sara Barnes, Jessie Oleson Moore and Paul Heaston
  • Sharpen your pencils, grab your best eraser — and maybe even round up a few new materials to try! These projects have our hearts for sheer fun factor, and because each one has something valuable to teach a budding (or already blossoming!) artist.
  • Everybody has at least one defining feature, the thing that makes them look like themselves and nobody else. When you're drawing somebody's portrait, you want to get that feature just right.
    Sara Barnes
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