When you consider the many ways to get started drawing comics it may seem like a difficult task. The world of cartoon and comic book art has branched off in so many different directions it may seem impossible to figure out where to start! There are the wildly artistic styles that are popular in the mainstream comics of the DC or Marvel universes, the freeform and sometimes abstract styles popular in indie books, and the simple caricatures and line drawings that still appear daily in newspapers. One of the first steps is identifying the type of comics that you want to draw and learning what medium the artists in that genre use.
Although many artists now use computers, airbrushing, or other means to draw and color their works, the easiest way to get started drawing comics is to do it the old fashioned way. The three tools necessary for a beginning artist are a set of drawing pencils, a good black marker or ink pen, and if you intend to color your comics a set of markers or colored pencils.
For the more realistic styles of popular adventure comics, look at figure drawing tutorials to learn form, and study photographs to learn techniques such as shading and foreshortening. If you intend to draw caricatures, look at the famous cartoons that appear regularly of celebrities and politicians to learn how exaggeration creates an interesting drawing. Practice, practice, practice the style of comics that you want to begin drawing until you develop your own style.
Once you get to a point where you want to get started with creating finished comics, you’ll want to invest in a light box. A light box is a box with a plexi-glass surface that contains a bright, white light source. The light shining through will enable you to see the lines of the original even if placed underneath a sheet of heavy drawing paper, making it easy to make clean copies of your work.
It can be a good idea for the beginning comic artist to make several copies when learning to color, giving the artist plenty of room for error. It’s important to choose a high quality color for the best results when drawing comics. Prismacolor makes the best quality pencils and Copic the best markers for this work.
Many artists get started drawing comics by first becoming a theme-park or party caricaturist, learning the particular style of the company they are working for and then expanding it to meet their own style. To find opportunities at a theme park near you search online for retail caricature or join an organization such as the Caricature Artists of America. Drawing comics this way can be a fun and rewarding experience, as artists create a large output of work and learn efficient stylistic ways to draw comics that are both interesting and effective depictions of their client.
Once you create your own comic there are many sites online that allow artists to self-publish, with feedback and networking features that allow artists to get advice and meet fellow artists. This can be a great opportunity for improving your work and for getting your comic known to the general public, as most sites offer artists their own web domain and advertising for a nominal fee.
There are many ways to get started but above all the thing that an artist must possess is dedication and a belief in their own work.