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Top comments that mention products on r/FurryArtSchool:

u/Axikita · 2 pointsr/FurryArtSchool

Hey, glad to hear you're getting into it!

Regarding progress,

Here's the first sketch in my first sketcbook,

here's the last sketch in my first sketchbook,

and here's a recent piece of mine, about a decade later.

You're right about it being largely a matter of practicing and sticking with it, but there's definitely some stuff that can help the process go smoother.

First off, having some educational material aimed at your level is a huge asset. Andrew Loomis has a series of (free, public domain) books that would be my top reccomendation, starting with Fun With a Pencil. I also really like Matt Kohr's ctrl+paint, and his traditional drawing series does a good job addressing some of the art fundamentals. I personally started out with Burne Hogarth, which had some great info but would probably not be my top pick for a beginner. Pick one and read it, watch it, skim it, come back to it later- however works best. Don't feel like you need to get everything in one read, just pick a topic or two that seems manageable and approach it at a comfortable pace.

Also, be sure to have fun with it. I started out drawing anime with a friend, and it was great. It taught me a few bad habits which I had to work through down the line, but I don't think I'd still be an artist if I hadn't started with something I enjoyed. Find a way to enjoy drawing early on- post online, do fanart, find a friend and develop characters together. Don't feel like it needs to be all "practice" all the time. Use the books and the resources (and critique communities like this one) to get you through the frustrating patches, and use friends and fan communities to get you through the boring ones.

Good luck getting through this first rocky patch, and enjoy the process!

u/jackiebird · 3 pointsr/FurryArtSchool

If you're talking about the Christopher Hart ones (they guy who does all the "How to draw manga" books), then yea, they are pretty bad. They are so dumbed-down, and not in the good way like to make it easy for beginners, but to the point where they are flawed. They're OK if you want references for designs and ideas, but don't get them for instructions. And as for specifically drawing hyenas, I seriously doubt you'll find one that specifically shows that.

I'd recommend anything by Burne Hogarth (the details can be a little intimidating, but he's spectacular with teaching form and composition) for learning basics of anatomy and how the body works. Here's a link to his blog for a list of his books:
If you're looking specifically for animal instructions though, there's one book I have that has helped, by Jack Hamm. It's not quite in the way of step-by-step, but it is good for hints on what to look for in finding the distinguishing details in animal anatomy. This one here:

Without being dismissive about it though, really the best thing you can do is to practice and practice and practice. Looking to instruction books and "how to" books is OK for introduction and familiarizing yourself with a genre, but it's far too easy to get locked into bad methodology. Either because the instructions are actually bad (again as in the case of Christopher Hart), or because what works for one person doesn't necessarily work for another, and you don't want to stick yourself into a way of working that's not right for you just because you're "following instructions." Everyone has a process that works best for them, and it's best to find how you work.

If you have access to it, I think watching streams would be a good idea. Drawing is a process, so seeing a process is a good way to get into the swing of things. Again, just remember that their way doesn't have to be your way. Give what they do a try, but make yourself comfortable.

Some universal rules that I think are helpful:

  • Remember that everything has form. What that means is that everything is made up of shapes. It feels like a throwback to kindergarden to turn triangles and circles into detailed pictures, but it's really true. Find the large shapes in everything.

  • Work big-to-small. Big shapes first, then small shapes. Whole form, then parts. No one part of your image should be significantly more detailed than another.

  • If you're working digitally, you have the advantage of being able to easily flip your image to check for balance. If you're working with pencil and paper though, it can be a little tougher; hold up your paper backward to a light source so you can see the mirror-image of your drawing, or use a mirror. Some things look right one way, but when you reverse it will look completely wrong. If this happens, fix the reverse side to make it look good before flipping it back the right way. Keep doing this back and forth until you like both the forward and reversed versions equally. That means your image is properly balanced.

  • This is probably a little advanced for this stage, but will come in useful anyhow; again if you're working digitally, check your image by lowering the saturation slider to look at the picture in black-and-white. This will show you if your color scheme is too flat (you won't be able to tell the difference between differently-colored areas), and will make sure your areas of focus are noticeable. There really isn't a way to do this if working pencil and paper, unless you take a B&W photo of the picture to check. Also important, when shading, put about 50%-60% of your image in some sort of shadow (this is more for realistic styles though, so disregard if you're doing a simple flat-color cartoony style). Doesn't have to be super dark, but having prominent shadows helps lend a 3D effect to your shapes and adds a lot of depth.

  • This is something I still struggle with; don't worry about a design looking "right." What this means is, don't get too caught up in anatomy and correctness. Artists take liberties with form all the time, and not to mention you're creating a creature that doesn't actually exist, so you're going to have to wing it a little bit. Worry more about the image being what you want it to be, that you have a piece you're happy with, not one that's perfect.

  • And in the same vein as the last note, make sure you know what style you want to draw in. Do you like a more cartoony style, or do you want it to be more realistic? Study and reference art in the style you're going for. And don't be afraid of trying other styles, even ones you don't like. You never know what may end up working.

  • Don't force yourself. Just starting out can be a hard thing, and a quick way to make it worse is to stress about it and try to force your way past it. If you find you're having a tough time, take a break. Go do something else for a little while, let your brain recharge, take a nap, and then come back to it with fresh eyes.

    Most importantly, and you've heard it a million times, PRACTICE. No one becomes an expert overnight. For many of us it takes years to get into our own style and even then, it will continue to change. Don't worry about what you're doing wrong, especially at the beginning, but retain what you do that you like. Look to others for inspiration, but in the end, make it your own.
u/Halfslats · 2 pointsr/FurryArtSchool

Awesome, thanks.

I don't know which laptops are good these days, but the brands I trust are HP, Asus, and Acer. Since you're not going to be doing anything resource-intensive, you could look for anything under $400-ish. Check out this article for some recommendations. If you're going to look on your own, be sure to check the reviews and make sure there are no huge, common problems.

For drawing tablets, the Huion H610 Pro is recommended often, but you can get a good beginner drawing tablet for under $100. Popular brands I see are Huion, XP-Pen, and GAOMON.

For programs, I would recommend GIMP or MediBang Paint Pro. I've personally used both for various projects. They're both free and they work well. Should be easy to understand if you mess around with them.

Alternatively, if you got anything off the Microsoft Surface line, you would be combining the laptop and the tablet, and possibly saving money. Something to look into. The new Surface Go starts at $399.99.

Hope this helps a bit. Feel free to ask if you have more questions. I'll see what I can do.

u/[deleted] · 2 pointsr/FurryArtSchool

There's no substitute for practice, but there is one book that was highly recommended to me. It's called The Natural Way To Draw, and its focus is on gesture drawing. I'm sure you've done gesture drawing in the past, but perhaps this book can provide some new insight into the process?

My second recommendation is to keep track of cartoonists online. There's a whole community out there of blogs and tumblrs that circulate tutorials, student films, book recommendations, and other things that catch their eye. Some of my favorites include Izzy's Scribbles, The Living Lines Library, and The Pencil Test Depot.

There's so much more out there, covering not only animation, but character design, storyboarding, layout, etc., but part of the fun is tracking down these resources, so I'll leave you to find the rest. You should always be on the lookout for more reference both online and offline, and make sure your intake is balanced. Going outside of your comfort zone may provide that one insight or edge you need to land that job!

Happy drawing!

u/BoartterCollie · 1 pointr/FurryArtSchool

This is definitely a great approach! I wish more artists in this community would step back to study fundamental things like this.

I suggest looking at your references as you draw, and don't worry about memorizing it. That part will come with time. As you draw you'll become more and more familiar with the subject and won't need to use references as much.

Also I highly recommend the book Animal Drawing: Anatomy and Action for Artists. It's a collection of essays and detailed anatomical drawings of various species and has a ton of really helpful information. I go back to it any time I feel like brushing up on a species I haven't drawn in a while.

u/blackstarin123 · 8 pointsr/FurryArtSchool

Example 1

Here is my red line, the legs was what I think could be improved on. I just put the legs in perspective and fixed it up.

Example 2

Here is the version showing the shapes to think about. Think about shapes and how they wrap around the body.

Another example showing the perspective.

Example 3

I would recommend is to practice drawing form. Here is a video explaining it.

The Basics: what they mean

Also read some books on animal anatomy I recommend :

Animal Anatomy for Artists: The Elements of Form

Science of Creature Design: understanding animal anatomy

Also here is a book about perspective:

Perspective Made Easy (Dover Art Instruction)

I hope it helps :)

u/Feynt · 3 pointsr/FurryArtSchool

Well, first thing would be using a scanner not based on SCSI ports, or using a cellphone from the early 2000s to take the picture. >3

There really isn't much to say beyond the tired "learn anatomy" line. You've got to look into things like Gray's Anatomy, or the Atlas of Human Anatomy for the Artist, or apps like Mara3D (iOS and Android available). Alternatively, go outside with a sketchbook and just... Draw people. Sitting on the bus for a while? Try to draw someone across from you. Waiting forever at a checkout in a food store? Draw the person in front of you (get their basic form sketched out quickly and then use them as a reference to fill out that form). Draw classmates over lunch, or colleagues at work, which ever is applicable. The more real things you draw, the better you'll get at drawing imaginary things.

The important thing though is to keep drawing. Filling sketchbooks with bad drawings will only help you improve. Just start from the inside out. You'll find that, like building, having a solid foundation to build a character on will make drawing easier. Make a simple stick figure skeleton with the correct proportions, learn your muscle groups, and the rest of the drawing falls into place.

u/Kezreck · 1 pointr/FurryArtSchool

I picked up that particular book (I assume it's this one ). And I agree, it's really, really dumbed down. If you just google "how to draw anthros" or "anthro line art" you'll find plenty of free blogs and the like with just as much information as the book. It's not that the book is bad, it's just not worth what I paid for it.

/u/jackiebird has some great suggestions, but I'd also like to add Drawing on the Right Side of the Brain by Betty Edwards. It's not specific to anthro drawing, but gives a LOT of good concepts to build a foundation. It focuses primarily on how to get into the proper mindset for drawing and it really helped me get started (even though I still have a lot of practice ahead). It's targeted specifically at beginners.

u/RedRockRex · 1 pointr/FurryArtSchool

Figure Drawing for alls it's Worth is pretty much my bible. I'm also pretty fond of Dynamic Figure Drawing by Burne Hogarth. I've learned quite a bit from opening either book to a random page a just drawing what I see.

u/Sat-AM · 3 pointsr/FurryArtSchool

Looks pretty good!

In the future, I'd suggest that you try to think structurally, building up basic forms before you try to solidify your contours. A professor I had in school used to repeat to us, "Earn your edges." What that means is that you should understand the forms that are in your image, and then define your contours based on those. What's a sphere? A cube? A cylinder? A combination of any of those? A distortion of those? Where is the cheekbone? The eye sockets? What can you break the shape of the bridge of the nose down to?

Obviously, you're not really going to know any of that just by default! That's when you bring in reference as you need it! Whenever you attempt to draw something, look references up for it. If you're drawing an ocelot, try looking at photos of them from various angles. See if you can discern what forms make up their heads. If you're not squeamish, you might even consider finding pictures of their skulls to really understand the underlying structure. Draw them as close to the references as you can! Start your sketch lightly and decide "This is a cube. I can take this cube and remove chunks to make the head shape. Here's a wedge shape. It fits here." After you've got this lightly drawn in, move on to darker pencils and start refining your edges. You can use those forms you defined to start deciding where light will go and how it'll behave on your drawing!

If you haven't already, I suggest you pick up copies of George Bridgman's Constructive Anatomy and Louise Gordon's How to Draw The Human Figure: An Anatomical Approach. Both of these books are chock full of information about breaking things down into simpler shapes and understanding what goes on under the skin of a figure, which is very applicable to anthro art!

u/Aberguine · 1 pointr/FurryArtSchool

Not necessarily accessible online, but here's an excellent book for drawing north American mammals:

And you might as well label me "weird": taxidermy catalogs. You can get a feel for the musculature of the species you are trying to depict.

Other than that, browse DA or FA.

u/FuriousLynx · 1 pointr/FurryArtSchool

Color and Light: A Guide for the Realist Painter (James Gurney Art)
This one is great for understanding color and is really good if you're going to use traditional media.

u/artmuhjackal · 2 pointsr/FurryArtSchool

I would say, if you really want to make fast progress, yes, art classes would help you tremendously! But of course, you could also very much manage on your own via resources like books (Artistic Anatomy helped me a bunch with male torsos)and online tutorials. The problem with that is that, sometimes it can be difficult to figure out what you’re doing wrong when you don’t have someone who knows art more than you to tell you what to fix.

I can also recommend one artist on YouTube who is both an online art teacher and does extremely in-depth tutorials; I learned so much from her it’s honestly ridiculous. She’s not a furry artist in the slightest; however, she specializes in character design and portraiture so a lot of concepts she’s taught in her videos I have applied to my own furry drawings. She, (Instebrak) does do online private tutoring though I’ve never participated.

u/Shit_Fazed · 2 pointsr/FurryArtSchool

Too true, so many tutorials and guides seem to focus too heavily on the technical skills and not enough on the proper artistic mindset. As someone to whom art did not come naturally, this book and its early chapters focusing on getting in the proper mindset of an artist has been more valuable than most anything else I've seen. I'd love to see more of that, not just here but in tutorials in general.

u/BambooKat · 1 pointr/FurryArtSchool

Here, here's the tablet I'm currently using:

Also yes, Krita is good, but stick to the basic brushes or else you will lost and/or daunted, advice from one beginner to another ;)