View Full Version : The Importance of Drawing

10 October 2007, 05:53 PM
Hi I am a new student at an Art Institute where they teach animation. This is a huge debate and i dont know if this is a stupid question or not. but i have been asking various people at my school about this. I am a decent artist when it comes to life drawing, anatomy, pencil, and paint mediums. A friend of my told me one day not to waste my time drawing, if im going to be a 3d artist. He also said you dont really need that to be good in 3d. This kind of came to a shock to me, because i was always told if your concepts are good in 2d, they will be even better in. A lot of times ive heard the 3d program is just a tool. im sure this has been talked about before but i wanted to know everyones opinion on this. please feel free to leave any comments you like, i would like to hear everyones feed back.

10 October 2007, 01:38 PM
Being able to draw and being a good artist in general is really going to help you. You definitely need those skills if you want to be good at 3D (or any other cg for that matter)
Some studios require life drawing in your portfolio.
You can always tell when someone works in 3D without any general art skills. Their models will lack good proportions and composition. Their color choices will be bad. I can't tell you how useful it will be if you can draw your front and side views of a character correctly. It seems like a lot of people fall down on that- and it should be the first step a lot of times.
3D is just a tool. You need some artistic skill or you won't know what to do with it. Anyone who tells you otherwise doesn't know what they are talking about.

10 October 2007, 04:23 PM
Kathleen, I agree with you but I also think that there might be exeptions: depending on what you create, being able to draw isn't allways a must and there are people who seem to be able to wield a 3D-grid as if they're modelling clay (with "slightly" different deformability).
And on the other hand srawing might not be the only way to get a feeling for a 3-D object. Working with clay or other materials might even be better in several ways - sometimes I think if we restrict ourselves too much by working with those three isometric views so often.

But it definetly is extremly helpful being able to draw what you'd like to create. Even if it is not to get those formerly mentioned views it helps you think about it, clarify in black on white what's only in your head so far. And if it's about modelling something that allready exists, the process of drawing or depicting it in any other way let's you see details which might be so small but are crucial for making the viewer believe it could be real.

Just my small thoughts which can only be a little aspect of the answer to your interesting question, Allen.

10 October 2007, 10:21 PM
I'm not that good at drawing and it really hurts my 3D. I'm thinking of taking up a few advanced drawing classes to refine my skills.

10 October 2007, 04:24 AM
Particularly if you are going to do character work, figure drawing is VERY important. It helps alot with your understanding of anatomy and proportion. :thumbsup:

10 October 2007, 02:06 PM
as an example: life drawing and drawing in generall i s a good way to learn anatomy, so keep going with drawing..! :D

10 October 2007, 06:48 PM
Well drawing improves your imagination and you realy need that in 3D.

So if you are modeling a character for example normaly you have an imageplane
wich shows the character you are going to model from the front and the side.
But thats not enough, because you have to imagine how these two are connecting
together in 3D space.

And traditional art will help you doing this.


11 November 2007, 08:19 AM
To begin, perhaps the questions for this poll are slightly limited...

For instance...I don't draw much at all, but I doubt that I would quit drawing all together either...

Moreover, I really don't get the continual suggestion that you have to learn to draw in order to model well... bullshi4

You have to have imagination, vision, passion, and determination...

work from imagination, or photo, or life object, or yes indeed, from a drawing... but you are totaly not limited to one of the afore mentioned...

I think that beyond having a good imagination, it is equally important to understand the toolset(s) and methodologies involved with modeling... :)

This all said, if as well as modeling, you would like to learn to draw, then that is cool too... ;)

12 December 2007, 12:43 PM
IMO people who can draw has his eye (perception) better trained and can analyze and understand shapes, forms, proportions... much better than people who can't. 3D sense of volumes is a plus you get when you learn to draw.

In the same way, people who paint has a sensitivity and feeling about colour.

And this without talking about knowledges like anatomy or color theory...:)

NOTE: If you are interested only in 3D, you don't need to make master pieces of drawing. Simply draw, draw, draw... and "learn to look"

12 December 2007, 02:24 AM
i think of it this way,
if you don't draw what you want to model first then your going to take a lot more time modeling out your character to fit what you may have in your mind,
i dont know about you but it takes alot less time for me to draw out say a head or an arm then it does modeling it out to just the right way, for me to just change my mind on what the model should look like in the first place and want to change it,
if you draw out your basic out line of what you want first you have an idea of what your going for.

12 December 2007, 04:15 PM
i discovered my passion for cg 2 years ago and i'm 30 yo now. i always study cg modeling,texturing, lighting, rendering and compositing because i simply love it. But now i feel my biggest dream would be to model characters. I'd start with just faces for the beginning. My biggest complaint is i've never been trained in traditional art of any kind. Now i wonder: i'm passionate, i can study anatomy of the face (to start), i have imagination, i can find references for my modeling... do i still need to consider taking courses and dedicating so much time to learn drawing? and i'm just speaking about modeling for pleasure, i'm not thinking about getting a job as character modeler. I just feel this need to create. Thanks for answering :)

12 December 2007, 12:25 AM
As an answer to yur question, Ravez:

I think aquariumboy and Shin Chan Pu are both right:

Simply draw, draw, draw... and "learn to look"

if you draw out your basic out line of what you want first you have an idea of what your going for.

So, posessing some skill in drawing is definetly helpful, but the most important part is to learn how to look at things and train oneself to see detail where necessary. So you won't need to take courses, but consider sketching what you try to achieve might help you think about it in th correct way. But other methods will be helpful in a similar way.

For example I modelled a female body and head some time ago. It was my first try and definetly not high art, but I was satisfied with the result (at least in some aspects) and didn't do a single sketch in the process. But I have learned to sketch a body or a face (the basics not the big thing) earlier at school.

So go ahead and have fun in being creative. You will feel it, when it is time to pick up the pencil to get a "better view" of things. ;-)

PS: I just had a look at your showreel and decided to better run and hide with my modest abilities than give you more advice :-).

12 December 2007, 10:28 AM
Well IMO drawing and 3d should go hand to hand together.
I started doing simple low poly models (spaceships for a game) at the age of 14\15, without any drawing knowledge. The models were fairly decent (perhaps even good) both as design and modelling standpoint. Would they be better if I knew how to draw? Definetly.
When you have a pencil in your hand your mind is free to wander around without you thinking about edgeloops, quads, etc. Thus you have more time to think about concept etc. The same goes for deciding the lightning, mood and poses in compositions.
Also, as mentioned before, drawing is a good way to train observational skills, especially if you are using reference (live preferably).
And of course dont forget you can sketch your wires much easier with a paper and pencil.
So drawing definetly helps the 3d process.

What wasnt been mentioned yet is the inverse. IMO 3d also lends a hand in the improvement of drawing skills. Only until recently Ive been starting to have a go at character modelling. The funny thing is when im drawing now, Im not just drawing what I see, but also what I've learnt from my 3d experience (small one, but nevertheless). That is, whereas I would just draw human torso faithfully to what I saw, now I think about more in "edgeloops" when drawing, thusmaking for a far better work.

Hope that helps

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