Drawing Basics


Lesson Info

Class Introduction

If you're a beginner, you have nothing to worry about. This is the place for you. I used to not be able to draw either and I have done hundreds of bad drawings, and you know what happened to me? Nothing. (laughter) I'm here. I had a lot of fun drawing and I got a lot of practice because art and drawing is just like any other exercise. In order to build muscle, you have to do it over and over again and practice, and the good thing is you're not running laps, you're drawing and it's really fun. So, this class is full of techniques to practice and take home. We're gonna start out with a good solid foundation of art school basics and then we're gonna move on to a technique that I really like to do. I use it all the time as a professional illustrator, but it's also really great for beginners. We're gonna take your mobile device... So, it could be a tablet, it could be a cellphone if you wanna draw really small, which I often do, and we're gonna use the glass on the top of the surface as a l...

ight box. So, you can get any image in there you want and then we're gonna put a piece of tracing paper on the top of it and trace that and transfer that drawing to a nice piece of drawing paper. So, you're using all the hands-on techniques where you get your hands dirty, you really craft something, a lot of texture to it, but you're also using the best of the new technology. Then, after we transfer that, we're gonna create a nice finished piece of art that you could take home and you can say, hey, I did this... I did a piece of art today. As we go through all these drawing techniques, I want you to take a whole bunch of notes in the margins and scribble, doodle, anything on your drawings because when you take these home that's when you're gonna really learn, after the class is over. When you're practicing on your own and maybe you're drawing your own subject matter or you're using a technique that you already do and you're just adding in my new information, you're gonna be like, ah, that's the aha moment. Now I really feel like I've gotten... I have a handle on this new material.

Do you want to learn how to draw but don't know where to start? In this class, professional painter & illustrator Cleo Papanikolas shares fun, beginner-friendly drawing techniques that can turn anyone into an artist. This class will help you overcome your fear of the blank page and focus on putting pencil to paper so you can draw the way you always wished you could.

In this class, Cleo will cover the fundamentals in drawing including:
  • Using different pencils for line quality
  • Applying different shading methods
  • Practice measurement and proportions in your work 
Cleo will help you embrace imperfections in your work with step-by-step exercises that apply key drawing techniques. 

Join Cleo and get started drawing today! 



  • This class is about two hours long. Overall it is a friendly and accessible approach to introducing some basic drawing techniques and tools that is appropriate for those who are nervous about or just novice to drawing. It lets the student jump in by tracing a basic outline which is then detailed. Towards the end the instructor demonstrates a more advanced type of tracing using a tablet as a lightpad, and there is also helpful information on how to trace one's own work to transfer it to better paper or slightly alter the drawing to be larger/wider/etc. The middle portion has overview information on types of lines and methods of shading. These aren't super thorough examinations of those topics, but should be ample to complete the exercises and drawings included and recommended in the class. Likewise, the overview of drawing tools and papers is an overview, but strikes a good balance between overwhelming with too much information, and giving students enough info to know what tools they need for basic drawing and how to use them. There is a brief overview of how to use the sight size method to draw freehand more accurately. This is a subject that could easily be an entire class topic on its own. Some will find this enough info to get going, others might prefer expanded information and more details on this. The more complex subject of ellipses in perspective is touched on only briefly. (Perspective is also a complex subject that needs a whole class of its own, so this is understandable.) In contrast to some other reviewers, I did not have a lot of issues with the filming and camera angles. A lot of time was spent on the angle of looking at the drawing in action. However, it is clear that material was edited out from the live version. The edited version doesn't follow the drawing of every exercise through to its conclusion, and sometimes segments end or start abruptly.
  • I like it. it's not very in-depth but it gave me the courage to start drawing, and I had so much fun. Great for beginners.
  • Definitely different from any other drawing class I've taken. Suggestions: 1. When the instructor is drawing, I would have liked the camera to say on the drawing. 2. The instructor should be more prepared. It seemed that she had to refer to her notes far to often, 3. When paying for this class, I did not know that the videos would not be complete. They end at point where it is clear that the instructor is continuing on, but I don't get to see the remainder. There are better, free and paid, drawing courses available online.