Color Techniques for Drawing

Lesson 14/17 - Develop your Style by Showing Your Work


Color Techniques for Drawing


Lesson Info

Develop your Style by Showing Your Work

We just did a lot of art and what if you just put it back in your notebook and put it back under your bed? That would be great, you would've got your practice, you would've learned to draw yourself a little bit, but it's not putting it out into the world. It's not developing your style as much. Let's talk about style a little bit. The first way people develop their style is by just doing a whole lot of work. As we were going through all the techniques, we were saying, oh choose which ones feel natural to you, which ones are your favorite, get rid of the ones you don't want to do right now, save 'em for later. As you make those decisions, or even within one drawing, you're keeping your favorite parts and erasing the rest and reworking them. Every little decision you make, is kind of developing your own personal style. The other way is just to set up some kind of job for yourself. You set up your own parameters, like we've been working on dogs and trophies. So again, we did three dogs an...

d trophies before, and I painted 'em in. I chose three different colors, and three different dogs, and three different trophies. You just decide that you're gonna work in a series. Whether, it's for a week, a month, a year. You'll learn all about all the different aspects of that style and choose what it is you like about it. As you get super comfortable with it, just the decisions you make, you're style will naturally evolve. Another project that I did for myself, is a blog project. I decided a couple years ago, every week I was gonna do a tiny little craft, I call them my tiny paintings project. I did a little painting the size of a postcard and made some kind of a paper craft out of it. I just gave them away for free. They're still up there, on my blog. It really got me thinking about crafting, 'cause every week I'd walk around, I'd be like, anything I saw, paper bags in the store, I would be like, hmm how could I make a craft out of that? Why would someone wanna use a tiny paper bag? What would I put on it? I didn't end up doing that one, I made the little bows and arrows, and any kind of event that happened, holidays, or I would think, what could I do, make a tiny paper craft, and how could I put a painting on that? And so, people will tend to say, oh gosh, you're so creative, how do just come up with these ideas. And they don't just poof out of thin air, it's because I've got a project and I'm looking for the idea, a specific idea. And that's another way that you can really develop your style, is by a whole year long project. If it is on a blog, or Instagram, or something, then it gets out there to more people. As more people see it, they comment or somebody maybe, if you're doing this professionally, someone will say, oh I really like that ad you did for such and such, let's do one a little bit in that style, but change it just a little. And so, you kinda get known for a style. So, outside influence does really affect. You think you're making your style, but you're relating to any good compliments you got and saying, oh, yeah I guess that did kinda work out, I think I might try that again. It's a combination of doing a whole lot of it, and setting up problems for yourself, and taking outside influence, and maybe it's a bad influence. And maybe you say, I'm never doing that again, or maybe it's a good influence and you say, oh someone paid me money to do that. I was having fun drawing, I think I'm gonna do another one. (laughs) It's just your style naturally evolves if you keep at it and keep practicing. Showing your work, we hit on it a little bit. A social media project, so you could do a blog like we said, or you could do a hashtag project. I've done ones that are national, or I've done ones that it's just a few friends that get together, and this would be on Instagram, or I guess you could do it on Facebook, whatever social media you like to follow. And you just create this little hashtag of you know like, two paintings a week, or one painting a day, or whatever it is you wanna do. You get an online group of friends together and you really all support each other and give each other feedback and it's accountability. You see all your friends putting it up, you're gonna put it up too, you're gonna try a little harder, stay up a little later, bust out another little drawing that night. It's a really good way of keeping you on a schedule, where you can just really develop your artistic practice, because it is practice, and it is daily. (laughs) Another way is to display your art a lot. If you do put it in your sketchbook and put it away in your notebook somewhere in your tote bag or your backpack, and you never see it. It's kind of like how they tell people who play a musical instrument, if you play the trumpet or the guitar, they say just put your trumpet on the coffee table, or hang your guitar on a hook on the way, don't ever put it away in a case and shove it in a closet, because you won't play it. But if it's there, and you open the front door, and you just got home from work, and you're, hey there's my trumpet on the coffee table, you're likely to pick it up.

Class Description

Are you ready to work with color on your drawing but overwhelmed by all the possible options? In this class, professional painter & illustrator Cleo Papanikolas shares fun, beginner-friendly color application techniques that can turn anyone’s drawings into vibrant finished pieces.

In this class Cleo will teach you 8 different color styles ranging from spot color techniques to using metallics with illustrations.

You'll also learn how to:
  • Load and Apply color with your brush 
  • Use different mediums: watercolor, gouache, brush pens and colored pencil 
  • Create harmonious color palettes
With your finished color pieces, Cleo will show you how to move your drawings out of your sketchbook and out into the world. Learn how to display your drawings on gallery walls and onto physical products, from iPhone cases to large scale tapestries, with sites like Society6.  


user 43495d

Cleo does start quite nervous, and not very clear in her explanations. Thanks to the guy asking the questions throughout the class…I guess he was as confused as us in the beginning. BUT…the class does get better!! She gets more confident and does give good examples to take your simple drawing to a colorful piece of art you can sell on products or share on social media. I really enjoyed later lessons. And I always say-if I can get a least ONE good advice or trick – then it was not a waste of my $20.