Do I need to learn how to draw before I paint?

:

Is there a step by step way to learn how to paint?

Can I learn how to paint without learning how to draw first?

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  • Expert Answers (4)
  • Colleen Scanlon
    Colleen Scanlon
    :

    No, you don't have to learn to draw before painting. Drawing can help for certain type of paintings but it's not absolutely required. It also depends what you want to paint. If you want to paint a horse than drawing can be helpful. If you want to paint clouds or abstract art, drawing isn't as important.

    Some people have narrow and strict views about art, but I think art is about self expression and discovery. You can discover color and texture and how different pigments work together and mix on canvas.

    But drawing can be helpful, but you can always go back and learn drawing after you experiment with painting. But don't be limited by your inexperience with drawing, just go out and paint!

    Chris Pierce
    Chris Pierce
    :

    Hey Justin, no you don't need to learn how to draw first. But as others have answered, it can be helpful if you learn some basic drawing techniques first.

    Wendy Kurre
    Wendy Kurre
    :

    If you want to be a great painter, then yes you do need to learn how to draw first.

    Some people take a very liberal approach towards art and what can be considered as art. You can paste spaghetti on color paper and call it art, no drawing or painting involved. Bravo! If that's what you want to do, forget about all this, go to Michael's and buy some color paper and glue.

    But if you want to do art professionally, the old master way, the academic way, you need to start from the basics. You need to learn drawing, sketching, perspective, light and shadow, shading, pencil rendering, color pencil, charcoal, pastel... and then you can move on to water based mediums, water color, markers... and after all that, you can go on to oil painting and acrylic painting.

    Most art school arrange their courses in this way because IT WORKS. It's like trying to learn calculus before learning algebra. Just because art is less tangible, and there is no small amount of bad art being hyped as modern/abstract masterpiece, people are more than happy to cut corners and take the easy way out.

    So my question is do you want to make spaghetti art on color paper or do you want to draw like Da Vinci? If you want the former, go ahead, buy paint and canvas, experiment like people who think, "My toddler can make art like this."  If you want to do the latter, go get a sketchbook and pencil, and take some art classes.

    Hannah Lemke
    Hannah Lemke
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    You don't have to. But it would be easier and helpful if you do learn some basic drawing, sketching, shading, color pencils, charcoal, and pastel.

    Learning simple drawing techniques can help you learn how to paint better.

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