4 Steps to Your Own Signature Art Style

If you asked me whether or not I thought developing your own signature art style was an absolute necessity before you begin selling your art, I would say no. I might then go on to explain how I know dozens of artists who make their living selling their art that don’t have an instantly recognizable, unique drawing style. But in the end I think you would remain unconvinced. I think you would still believe that you need an individual style before you start selling your work. So rather than spend the time we have trying to convince you, I figured it would be easier to just show you how to develop a signature style, step-by-step. Honestly, it is better if you have one and it does help when it comes to selling your work, even if it isn’t an absolute necessity.

I discovered this method by trial and error. Everything I’ve ever read says that developing a personal style takes years, and I’ve never been able to find a step-by-step process on exactly how to do it. I could find plenty of posts titled “how to find your own art style” but none of them actually explained how to do it. They all suggested things like draw for years and years or find your inner passion magnet, whatever that is. I guess it’s good advice but I needed something actionable, something I could actually do that would produce the results I was looking for. In the end I had to develop it myself, but once I did, I had a step-by-step process that I’ve since used to help hundreds of artists find their own personal style that fits them and grows with them as they continue to develop. It really works and all you have to do is follow the steps.

There is nothing mystical or magical about developing your own personal art style. Style, like any other element of your artistic process, comes deliberately. It doesn’t need to take years or even months. Style is something you build, and you can build it in a week. Tops.

Let’s Get Started

The steps I’m about to give you should be followed in order and to the letter. You’ll be tempted to cheat and jump ahead or pick more things than recommended. Please don’t. If you follow the steps and put serious thought into your choices you will have the foundation for your own personal signature style with the very next drawing you do.

One more thing before we get started. Since developing a personal style is usually considered a creative endeavor, it will help if I give you my definition of creativity. Once we get the creative part out of the way you can follow the steps and achieve the results you really want.


With that definition in the back of your mind, let’s get to it.

Step 1: Identify three artists or art styles that really resonate with you emotionally

OK, so here’s where you start. Pick three artists or art styles or art objects that you really love. They can be anything or anyone and you can mix-and-match. You can also choose three-dimensional art styles like sculpture or dolls or toys, but it’s important that at least two of your choices be two-dimensional styles or artists. For example, you could use all three choices on different artists who use different styles, or all three choices on different artistic styles or “isms” like Impressionism or Mannerism etc.

The artists you choose should not work in a distinctly similar style to each other and the styles you choose should be as different as possible. We are going for variety here.

The most important part of this step is to choose artists that you really admire and styles that you really enjoy. You really really need to love what you pick, but don’t forget you can only pick three.

Step 2: Choose one image that best represents each of your choices from step one

Step two is a hard one for a lot of people. What you need to do is choose one painting or drawing or photo that best represents your choices from step one. For example, let’s say you chose Audrey Kawasaki. You would choose your very favorite Audrey Kawasaki painting. Or let’s say you chose Anime. Choose your favorite Anime drawing of all time.

I know, I know, it’s hard! There are so many good ones to choose from! But it’s important, so no cheating, you can only pick one image for each artist or artistic style or 3D object. So take some time with this step and choose images that you really love, images you would hang in your house, images you would actually buy.

Step 3: Analyze each of the images you chose in step two

If you thought step two was hard, buckle your seat-belt. Step three is the hardest part, the part most people don’t spend enough time on. It’s also the most important part, so please take the time to do it right.

Here is how to do it right. Really study each image you chose. Have a pen and paper handy so you can write down your observations. For each image that you chose there is one major artistic element that really makes that image amazing, one something that made it stand out to you over all the rest. Find that. Analyze it. Write it down.

Ask yourself WHAT grabs your attention first. That’s the thing you’re after. Next, ask yourself WHY that particular thing grabs your attention over everything else in the drawing. Now ask yourself HOW that particular thing was used in the drawing.

There are no wrong observations. The only way to mess this up is to make too few observations.

Be as specific as possible. If you chose a figurative artist for example, you shouldn’t just write “I like the way so and so draws the figure.” That’s not enough information. You need to understand why you like the way so and so draws the figure. What exactly is it about this particular figurative artist that moves you over every other figurative artist out there? Is the figure realistic or stylized? Is it strong and powerful, or fragile and delicate? Did the artist use bold outlines or no outlines at all? Is the figure strongly lit with dramatic lights and shadows or softly lit with hardly any shadows at all?

Maybe it’s not the figure that interests you, maybe you find it’s the color that really stands out to you. What is it about the color that caught your eye? Are all the colors bright and vivid or are they dull and muted? Maybe there’s a combination of both. If there is a combination of both, are the bright vivid colors near or surrounding the main subject matter? Or are all the bright colors in the main subject matter and all the surrounding colors dull and muted? Did the artist use lots of different colors or are the colors mostly in the same color family? It’s things like this that you really want to know.

You should write at least a good-sized paragraph for each image describing the one artistic element in that image that makes it special for you. Several paragraphs is better and a full page best, but do what you can.

Right about now I’m betting your mind is throwing up all kinds of objections. Maybe you feel like you’re not a good writer. Maybe you feel like you don’t know enough about art to make good observations. Or maybe you feel like you just don’t have the words. None of those things matter. No one else is ever going to see this so it doesn’t matter if you’re a Pulitzer Prize winning writer or not. Simple is good as long as it’s carefully observed, and you don’t have to know anything about art to know what you like. It’s not important to use big impressive technical art terms. What is important is that you know why you like what you like. I’m not saying it’s going to be easy, but nothing worth doing ever is. So take your time and really look at each image that you chose.

Teaching yourself to do this step well will be extremely valuable to you as an artist. You may recall that I made a comment in the blog post, Are You Ready to Start Selling Your Copic Marker Art?, that marketing your art and talking about your art are the same thing. Most artists have trouble with sales because they don’t know how to talk about their work. They don’t know how to talk about their work because they never learned to talk about art work in general. If you don’t know how to explain a thing, it’s difficult for other people to understand that thing. Nobody likes things they can’t understand.

By spending enough time on this step you will learn to analyze and talk about art which will help you develop the tools to analyze and talk about your own art. The more you talk about your own art the better it sells.

Step 4: Combine each of the individual artistic elements you identified in step three into an original drawing of your own

This is the step where my definition of creativity comes into service. In this step you combine the elements you chose so carefully in step three into an original drawing of your own. To be clear, here you are not combining the subject matter from the images you choose, you are combining the artistic elements you identified into a subject matter of your own. The subject matter for this new drawing should be the subject matter that you draw most often. It should be the subject that you love to draw most.

For example, let’s say that most of your drawings are of popular comic book characters but you haven’t yet developed a style that really sets the characters you draw apart from everybody else who draws comic book characters. Up to this point you’ve been drawing more or less in the style of your favorite comic book artist but now you’re looking to find your own style. You have decided to draw comic book hero “A”.

Now here’s where the work you did in step three comes in handy. Let’s say you learned that you love artist “X” line work, artist “Y” bold color schemes and art style “Z” for its bold use of lights and darks (think Rembrandt). So you start your drawing of hero “A” the same way you always do, with a rough sketch. You clean up the sketch and then do your line work in the style of artist “X”. When it comes time to color you use the bold color schemes of artist “Y” and the dramatic lights and darks of artist “Z”.

When you finish the drawing it will be in a unique style that no one has ever seen before. It will still be recognizable as your work because, in the example given above, the anatomy proportion and figure style is all the same as you’ve always done and so is the general conception of the character. It will also be seen as unique because the choices you made are unique to you. Even if two people choose the same artist or style, the way they adapt that particular element into their own work will be unique to them, and consequently, their drawings will be unique to them.

The really interesting thing about this approach is that it instantly sets your art apart from everyone else but still retains some familiarity with the work that everyone has seen before. It’s different yet familiar, unique but still recognizable. It’s not so different that no one will accept it (think Van Gogh) but not so familiar that they feel like they’ve seen it before. You’ll be surprised how many people will identify with the work saying it reminds them of their favorite artist but you’ll also be surprised how many people tell you how unique your style is and how much they love it.

Using this method to develop your own signature style really works.

Because you choose each element carefully and intentionally, the style that emerges will fit you as an individual and it will grow with you as you grow artistically. The more drawings you make, the more your style will refine itself and evolve. You may find a year or two down the road that your style has changed significantly. Most of us do. But because you started from a well-planned, foundational style, the changes will be natural and will look like they still belong to the same body of work.

Give it a try and see what you think. There’s no need to be an artist in search of a style any longer. I can’t wait to see what you make.

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  1. This might help I haven’t tried drawing yet but I am about to do that i hope this works!

    • Hi Kitty, I think you’re gonna be pleasantly surprised. Just follow the steps and you’ll have a unique style quicker than you thought possible. The cool thing is, you can experiment with different styles by choosing different artists for this process. Can’t wait to see what you come up with 🙂

    • OMG this really helped and kinda gave me an idea on how I should start off drawing. Ummm… do you have any tips on drawing hair!?

      • I would suggest practicing anatomy and realism first. I know it isn’t the most fun but try to spend a week or 2 doing some gesture drawings and proportional drawings of bodies, faces, and facial features. you don’t need to do a bunch, just to establish an understanding. you can do like one shaded picture for each and then maybe a couple of quick sketches. I would also suggest looking at random objects and trying to draw them. if it seems hard to draw something you can either draw something else or just dive headfirst and try your best. with every drawing make sure to critique yourself and look for ways to improve. you should also try to learn about hands, those are very basic, necessary, and difficult. I like rapidfireart’s drawing tutorials. additional things it would beneficial to learn about are 1 point, 2 point, and aerial perspective. these are just some artistic basics that you definitely need and can definitely learn online, but you likely won’t have learned yet if you are just 11. if any of these terms are new to you, you can look them up and find information. when you develop your art style, I would suggest doing it the same way you learned realism. figuring it out feature by feature, parts of the face to the whole face to the whole body. if you want to practice drawing hair or clothing or anything, you should look at references or reference photos very closely, and draw them a bunch. remember to critique yourself. you can do exercises where you time yourself and look at a reference for a full 10 minutes, or just one minute or 5 if 10 is too much for you. look at the references very long and analyze all of the details. then draw from memory. you can also try drawing without looking at your paper and only looking at the reference. that one likely won’t come out very well, especially not at first, but it is great practice.

    • OMG this really helped and kinda gave me an idea on how I should start off drawing. Ummm… do you have any tips on drawing hair and clothing!?

      • Begin with studying still images from real life for clothing. Look at how the wrinkles form around the figure, how the shadows are produced. As for hair, I’d begin with tracing some existing images or freehanding a picture from reference. I typically just swipe my pencil across the paper in long, sweeping motions and connect them with the same technique. It typically works. Hope this helped!

    • so im 10 and I found my artstyle sung this method.

  2. Really useful article! Thank you so much!

    • You’re very welcome, thank you for the kind comment!

      • It helped me awell! I enjoy the doll like drawings, some more magical elements, and just plain shapes used in things like in adventure time, and the article helped me put the key elements together! Thanks!

        Now that I think about it, my drawings look like Bratz Girls

      • Hi Alu, super happy to hear this article helped! Thanks for sharing your drawing. You’re right, there are some elements of the Bratz dolls here, but there’s also plenty of originality. Nice work 🙂

      • Hey! Wondered if you could help Me, these are the 3 images I like but I’m not sure how to develop it into my own style.

    • Lindsay McWilliams

      I have a particular artist I love, Laura Klein Stephens (and 2 other ones but I like hers the most) but i can’t replicate it. I try but I really can’t. Any tips? BTW awesome article

      • Hi Lindsay, I’m not familiar with her work. Can you post an image or two that you like from her, please? Once I’ve seen what kind of work she does, maybe I can help you with your journey. 🙂 If you feel like it, you could include a work or two from the other artists you mention, maybe together we could walk through this process using your artists as a specific example.

      • I’m on mobile so I have to reply to random comments to send the pics lmao

      • This is the last one, sorry they’re awkwardly placed

  3. But I don’t have original art :<

  4. // hi~! just wanted to say THANK YOU SO MUCH for making this article!!

    / i used this kind of technique and it’s really help me to realize what kind of art i wanted to make, and has helped me limit myself less when making art ^u^

    / and also, all those people reading, don’t be afraid to do this many times when finding new artists. finding new artists and observing their art will help you to know even more what art inspires you and how you want to make it. it’s great even to practice well known individual styles (( like from a tv show/comic : steven universe, lackadaisy, manga, etc. )) even if you don’t use them much, because the things that you like about them will in the end probably help develop your art style more~

    / also remember that art is all about trying new things, no drawing is the best because each one is different, and making something unique and different is what art is all about :3 each mistake helps you develop your art more, so never give up and just LOVE ART <3

  5. Whats the point? Is it your style anymore if its just a factory process? Dump van gogh, munch, and david lynch into a machine and see what comes out? All this does is limit and restrict what you can do. You should be influenced by other artists, hell, steal from them! but you shouldn’t use specific algorithms to get a style from said artists. Let it come naturally. This article is the easy way out. Like you said mr. Kerry, style should be “DELIBERATE”, not a mistakenly chosen set of rules that you must adhere to as some misguided recipe for success. I respect what youre trying to do, but I dont agree with it. These things cant be rushed.

    • Ian, thank you for the comment. I love a spirited discussion. By the way, Van Gogh, Munch, and David Lynch would make an awesome style. Good call! Now to your comment.. you seem to be mistaking guidelines for limitations and restrictions. The clearest path towards improvement in any endeavor is to start with a set of guidelines. In fact, more often than not, true creativity comes from taking a set of established parameters and then breaking away from them in your own unique way. I would challenge you to find any artist whos style was not derived from the artists that came before them. Further, your statements seem slightly contradictory. You state that we should let it come naturally, but then say style should be deliberate.. please show me a naturally occuring deliberate process. We can find some common ground though. I too respect what you’re trying to say, but disagree completely with what you’ve said.

      • I enjoyed following these steps but I don’t think it’s necessarily the beginning or the end of developing your own style. For me, It was a nice jump forward though. Also, I found that my own self came into my final piece more than I expected. You aren’t just combining other artists styles together and calling it your own. You are combining them with your own. It even says in the article to stick with your subject matter that you usually do. A piece of you and your individuality will end up in there whether you wanted it to or not. I found myself taking style concepts from other artists and changing them to be the way I wanted.

      • Christopher, This is a brilliant method of combining the personal attractions of elements of art and then defining them in your own unique style. If you only used 2, it would be obvious to a cryptic!, if you used 4 it would be too complicated and fussy.
        I went a step further with a satirical aspect and chose the worst artists!, and the worst parts of their works to get the contrast of the development process.
        I am also using the method to advancement /concept to everyday items like furniture, clothing, everyday electrical items etc. It’s blowing my imagination out of orbit.
        Like you rightly stated you can use the best of others creations to make the better of your own.
        Thank you for the inspiration
        Tim Holmes

      • Great retort Christopher!

        In fact i think a lot of very appealing styles are the result of certain restrictions placed in the artist, think of anime’s many labor saving tricks.

        That brings me to the one point i would add to your process: what kind of end product are you shooting for? What works in fine art won’t work in comics. And what works in comics won’t work in animation etc.

    • Yes, I agree. You haven’t developed your style at all. You have manufactured it. It takes years to truly develop your own style…and that’s a good thing.

      • If only The Beetles had utilised this method to music perhaps they wouldn’t have created so much rubbish along with the brilliance during their reign.

    • Hi Ian,
      I’m an artist developing my art style too. Everyone has their own ways! Maybe you developed yours your own way, and Christopher did too. Maybe that’s why he wrote this article, to INSPIRE others, and share his way that worked well for him. In case you do not know, there is a video on YouTube of a pretty popular Tuber who shared what an art thief is compared to “adopting” an art style. I don’t really know how else to explain it. When an art style is stolen, you steal everything. The OCs, the color schemes, the eyes, etc. What Chris is saying is that you work with different styles to make a style that is your own. This is optimally useful for beginning artists or artists who are struggling to find a style. I agree, finding an art style can’t be rushed, but this is meant for people who maybe want to test things out. When you use multiple art styles to test, it is not considered copying or stealing.

      • I absolutely love this article- Haven’t tried the process out just yet, but I expect it’ll be quite enjoyable.
        Tagging on to what a few others have said, this is a great way to develop ones own style. You have three aspects of other style to use, which gives you a frame of reference. However, so much it is your own due to the sheer amount of blanks you must fill.

    • You’re so naive, Ian.

      You are aware that ALL artists STYLES, even the likes of Van Gogh etc, were influenced AND led to their “style” by other artists.
      E.g. Van Gogh was influenced by Paul Gauguin, Katsushika Hokusai, Honore Daumier, Edgar Degas, Eugene Delacroix, Utagawa Hiroshige, Édouard Manet, Jean-Francois Millet, Claude Monet, Camille Pissarro and Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec.

      ALSO, MANY of these old artists COPIED THEIR WORK/STYLE from female artists who were not allowed to paint in that time, or if they did display their work were branded as “amateurs”

      JACKSON POLLOCK, the so called “greatest US painter of all time” was a plagerist. HIS style was taken directly from (i mean he literally copied her!!) Janet Sobel, a Ukranian artist who showed some work in New York. But of course, the male pigs branded her work as something “you’d expect from a housewife.”. Pollock went to her exhibition, went “that’s cool”, went home, copied it, and they branded him a genius.

      SO MANY women influenced old famous male artists who copied them or even REMOVED THEIR Signature from their art and put their HUSBANDS names over it, whom are now famous today.

    • So u prolly know why ur wrong by now. But, just don’t talk like this unless you’ve made groundbreaking art that changes the world. Imagine a painting inspired by nothing. That does not exist, art is always derivative. I have a passable but unique art style, but this came from years of doing things just as described in the article, this IS the natural process the author just trapped it’s essence! It’s a bit hypocritical to say that an artist CANT use this method, because it’s “not correct”. When art is the one thing that has no rules in the universe

    • Ohhhh how I fare thee well in your abrupt response, and I can’t battle you in the here opinion. Bc it’s the opinions of opinion itself. Infinite matter of everything artistic, better yet,creative…~~ Good Day Fine Lad,
      ~~~Miss Solstice Ray
      [email protected]

  6. One of my favorite artists is one of my best friends and she sees what i draw, and she has a very unique style an it’s gonna be obvious that i some-what referenced her
    ~Btw this article was very helpful, i usually dp different styles on each of my drawings,. ~im gonna us this method!! (^~^;)ゞ
    • thxx c:

    • Hi Ashley, so happy you found this article useful! Don’t worry about referencing your friend. So long as you only choose one stylistic element from her work, what you end up with will still be uniquely yours, and I’m sure she’ll be flattered to see her influence in your work 🙂

  7. I’ve been drawing for years. I’ve been in school accademically studing art for 7 and half years to be specific, and I’ve never reached the place where what i’m drawing is also what i like. I’m not a bad artist, my work has been received well and i’m technically a somewhat proficient artist, but I personally haven’t felt very happy with my style. My artistic voice has so far just been the conglomeration of all the dofferent teachers and my natural tendencies.

    I haven’t tried this method yet, but it’s the first time anyone has given me an idea on how to develop a style I like. Most people just say look at tons of art and it will come to you. Perhaps that works for some people, but I find I like too many things and that makes it difficult to pin down how i want things to really look. Thank you for giving me a new approach, a different way to look at art and a practical way to start on my own journey to personal style discovery. I also really appreciated what uomoni said. Doing this multiple times gives you the opportunity to unlock combinations from your orinigal combinations. Perhaps Sargent and Mary Blair don’t look great combined but when adding the brain child of Arthur Rackham and Shel Silversteins illustrations you find the style that makes you happy.

    And the comments about originality, I respect the desire for it, but originalty is inevitable, unless you directly copy. That’s what 7.5 years of art school has taught me.

    Anyway thank you for a new idea!

    • Hi Curly, thank you for the amazing comment! I understand exactly where you’re coming from. When I was studying academically I had the same problems. My style at the time was simply a combination of the instructors that I admired and my own limitations with regards to my ability to apply the things I was learning. Not very satisfactory. In researching this post, I was shocked at the lack of practical advice on actually developing an artistic style. Everyone seemed to suggest that you should just wait and it would somehow magically develop on its own, but that’s not the way any of my other skill sets developed so it didn’t make sense to me that my style would develop that way either. The system outlined above is really cool because it really works. And like Uomoni points out, the opportunity for variation and refinements are endless. If you think about it, this is the way a natural style develops on its own anyway. We’re just shortening the process and guiding it with intellect. Again, thanks for the awesome comment 🙂

  8. It took me FOUR HOURS to find my style.. and I’m so in love I can’t stop drawing thank you so much!!

  9. I like pencil sketching a lot. Usually I try to figure out my own style of fonts (randomly). After reading this great post, I got some ground rules to create my own style of fonts. Now step by step unlike my previous method (randomly). I will try these steps, and one day I will show my fonts to you. Thanks a lot.

  10. I’m going to try this now I’m getting back into art after a long hiatus. I’m usually a jack of all trades and am very experimental, but I have been planning to sell for a long time and figured a signature art style could help. If not that, then at least it might help me get working again.

    Thanks for the post

    • Hi Cat, thank you for the kind comment! I too am a chameleon of sorts, in that I can draw in nearly any style. But once I finally settled on my own signature art style things really took off for me. I hope they do for you too 🙂

  11. I am a beginner at drawing…so will this work for me?

    • Hi Bree, that’s a very good question! Would it be possible for you to show me some examples of your work? I’d like to be as helpful as I can, but not sure I can answer your question without knowing where you’re starting from.

  12. these steps seem really hard and confusing my whole 4 years of art practice i followed what most artists say to do and thats find a artist and copy them with the best ability and it would teach you to draw like them but i found this method to be a big lie cuz as soon as i stopped looking at the images of the artists i couldent draw the image the same and it makes me feel like i just been stealing and not learning for 4 years and its kinda sad to me and makes me want to stop art

    • I think with the method Chris lays out you will make more progress towards finding a style of your own, because it basically forces to actually think about and understand what element you like from each artist rather than just copying and not understanding why the artist does things a certain way or what you like about their style. Seems easier to retain and put into practice if you understand what you’re doing 🙂

    • Hi Blake, I find it unfortunate that there is so little information out there on this subject and that you spent so long working only to end up feeling like you were just spinning your wheels. As you’ve learned from your experiences, just copying an artist will do very little good for you in the long run. However, the method I lay out in this post is different, in that rather than simply copying an artist you love, you’re analyzing that artist to determine what exactly it is that they do that you love. Once you understand what an artist is doing, not only are you able to copy it effectively, you are also able to deconstruct it and reconstruct it in new ways. Give this system a try. It’s really very simple, but I’m not gonna lie to ya, it takes hard work… anything worthwhile does 🙂

  13. Hi! I am writing from Sweden. This was exactly what I needed today and kickstarted my creativity! I am working on step 3 and will surely get back to you once finished. Just out of curiosity, are these guidelines developed by you alone or is there a teacher or someone else behind these steps? Thanks so much!

    • Hi Helena, I’m super happy you found this article useful, and I can’t wait to see your progress. To answer your question, the system described in this article was developed by me through years of trial and error. It is completely original and you can only find it here 🙂

  14. I liked the guidelines, figured out that i LOVE to draw eyes with emotion, though it’s hard with just pencil and paper. However, I am terrible at drawing eyes, any suggestions?

  15. Thanks so much for this article. I’ve been trying to develop my own style for a while now and this really helped!??

  16. Hello!
    I stumbled across your article after I got another down phase with my art.
    I read many articles on style already… not really any good ones to really do something rather than “draw and wait”.
    Though yours really helped!
    After figuring a bit of the stuff out I tried putting together things, overly excited. (which is a surprise because I wasn’t able to draw anything decent all day)
    For once I am even pleased with the result. Sure there’s probably still a long way to go but I think for a while I finally got a push in the right direction. Thank you!
    (doodling is really fun now. Well I’ll see for how long xD)

    • Wow, this looks awesome! Thank you for sharing it with us 🙂

    • Change, just- wow! I really love that drawing of Blue! It’s very refreshing to see other artists with Undertale in their life. As for myself, I personally draw lots of skeletal beings because of my love for Undertale and its many Aus. I have many different art styles and I’m hoping to eventually transform them into something of my own. I would love to see more of your work! Here is one of my pieces that I’m very proud of. It’s my first Oc (Her name is Gallery, she’s the sis of Outer!Sans and Ink!Sans) and Ink!Sans.

  17. Hi! I really think this article was helpful. I’m still having a few problems with finding my style. I’m trying to focus on the artists IcarianPrince (You probably won’t know who he is, he isn’t too popular, I’ll upload a photo) I’ve been trying to focus on the head, jaw-line, cheeks, etc. (those are the things I’ve been having the most trouble with) Do you have any tips I could use?

  18. Hi, this tutorial was really helpful however I’m having some trouble actually managing to try to replicate the way the artist draws
    I am in complete love with audria auclair’s art style and I would love to incorporate it into my style however I don’t know how to draw the particular thing (e.g. I don’t the process to draw a face the same way she does)
    This also goes for the other artists I love

    I would love if you could help me with this
    Thank you

    • I had trouble doing this too! Try looking at a picture of her art and sort of matching it. After doing this a few times, try putting in the style of your other artists. If you’re still having trouble, trace the drawing a few times. That’s what I used, and it really seemed to help.

    • Hi Cloe, if I were to dissect Audra Auclair’s style in an effort to integrate it into the system described above, I would categorize her style like this:

      • Linear, dead-weight line work
      • Simple, muted color schemes
      • Relatively standard anatomical proportions with slight exaggeration towards fashion illustration
      • Often animorphic components
      • Hair often plays a big role in composition

      With this list in mind, I would work towards incorporating those elements into the other artists you’ve chosen in order to create a new and unique style. If you’re looking specifically to learn to draw figures the way that she does, I would recommend copying as many of her works as possible until you get a feel for her style. Hope this helps 🙂

  19. Could a type of doll be considered an “artist”? I absolutely love Lalaloopsy dolls (you can find them in stores in the kids section) but does that fall under an artist?

  20. This was such a helpful article! I was feeling very frustrated the other day about finding a unique “style”, and now I can’t wait apply this. Many thanks!

  21. can you see if i messed up

  22. Funny, I wanted to work on my Style, too and what you describe is EXACTLY what I wanted to do, but wasn’t sure about it. And now I’ve read this article and wow, okay, seems like I wasn’t THAT wrong with my idea…! :3

  23. Hey! I’ve been drawing for nine years and have improved a lot since I started, but I’ve never found a style I could stick with… I’m currently trying semi-realistic because it’s a style that I’ve always admired, I think it’s the perfect balance between the real world and a world of my own, but here’s the problem… I’m struggling to find a way to merge the unrealistic style with the realistic one… When I attempt to do so, the final drawing looks like an amorphous mish mash of extremely realistic features and basic cartoon-like features… Do you have any advice on how to combine them without having too much of one of the styles??

    I’m sorry if the explanation confused you, let me know if you understood what I was trying to say…

    • Hi Silver, I love the concept behind your idea. Would you mind showing me some of your work where you are combining these two styles? I’ll have a better idea of how to help you once I see the work for myself 🙂

  24. I have only been painting for three years and I got represented by a gallery very quickly. But the style that is selling isn’t where my heart is and I struggled becoming 10 different artists trying to find myself. Your article I just read 5 days had tremendously helped me. I followed your instructions and within 3 days, I feel I found my style. Am finishing the first painting now and solo exhibit scheduled in June will show a total of 30 originals. thank you!

  25. Hi, I’ve been drawing for a few years (An example of my best work is below) but recently I’ve gotten stuck. I feel like rather than improving, I’m devolving. I don’t have a consistent style, beyond “anime”. I tried what you said and it seemed to help a bit, but not enough to make any difference. Also, no one really notices my art, I barely get any comments and I feel like no one likes it.

    • Hi Mingdaii, what a beautiful drawing. Tell you what, maybe if we walk through it together that would help. If you’ll show me the three artists you picked when you followed the advice in this post we’ll go through it together and see what we can come up with 🙂

    • Wow! This is really amazing!! Keep up the good work. If you think no one likes your work, I think you’re wrong on that. This drawing is really amazing and better than what I can draw. I’m sure lots of people admire what you do. Heck, I really admired this drawing. Great job!

  26. Truly enjoyed this article. Before reading it, I read an earlier article by a nice lady that said finding my style can take years. Finally I found an actual “shortcut” that won’t leave me still searching for my style in a senior home decades from now. I noticed this article was more about drawing and sketching but I’m hoping these steps will also work just as well with paintings. Paint is my medium of choice. I will try these steps out in the next few days and hope to find myself artistically. Thanks again!

    • Hi Ever Lee, happy you found it useful. I wonder if you were reading the same article I was while researching this post 🙂 Just so you know, I started my artistic career as a classically trained oil painter, so I can say from experience that this absolutely will work with that medium. Would love to see what you come up with!

  27. This is really cool. Great article! I never saw the connection in the different styles and artists I like, but I do now! Thank you!
    I teach high school art and I am going to try this with my advanced artists at the end of the semester!

  28. Thank you for this really useful article! I can`t wait to try this out- I`ve been looking for advice on developing my style and this makes a lot of sense! I`ve signed up to your emails so I don`t miss anything!

  29. It is Really useful…. My three favorite Artists are Akira Toriyama, Masashi Kishimoto, and Sui Ishida ….. this drawing below is of Kaneki Ken… i drew it about a month ago what do you think…. is there any room for improvement?

  30. Hello, Mr. Kerry,

    I just stumbled upon this website and article, and I find it to be very helpful.

    Here are the three artists I chose in order to try to make my own style:
    -Alex Ross (Marvel Comics artist) (line art)
    -Jim Lee (DC Comics artist) (color schemes)
    -Roger Robinson (Comic artist (not sure for what company) (darks and lights)

    I don’t have any work to share at the moment, but I just came up with these choices. I am think about using characters from Japanese anime to build with so I can prepare for making my original characters.

    So, what do you think of this idea?

    • Hi Michael 🙂 Good god, I love this idea! You’ve got really good taste in comic artists. The combination of Ross’s naturalistic figure style with Robinson’s noir style of graphic blacks combined with an anime theme would be something really special. I’m a little confused on Jim Lee for color. My impression was he’s mostly a penciler? Can you fill me in here? Not often I get to ask questions of you guys 🙂 Looking forward to your response, and can’t friggin wait to see what you do with this. Let me know if you need any help or have any questions. I’m really excited to see how this turns out for you.

  31. So excited to have found this article, I’ve been trying for years to find a style of my own, without much success. I can’t wait to try your method. Thank you so much.

    • I suck at this! Days spent on Pinterest and others trying to figure out what I like best, but styles I like are different from one another, for instance I like doing whimsical landscapes, but also characters (whimsical faces etc) so they can’t really both go in the same painting, too many choices I’m going nuts! Any advice?

    • You’re very welcome. Happy you found it useful. Would love to see what you come up with 🙂

  32. Thank you; you helped quite a bit but I still believe it’s Super DUPER Hard to find your own style, especially when you think your bad and everyone compliments you on it.

  33. Very helpful article. Actually, best one I read by far. Thank you so much! Will definitely plan on using this method :)0

  34. Your article hit the nail on the head. I have been looking for help like this for a long time. I am so excited to get started. Thanks SOOOOO much for taking the time.

    • Thank you, Jennifer. Super happy you liked it. When I wrote this post I was frustrated because there really isn’t a lot of actionable information out there on this subject. Makes me happy to have been able to create an article that’s actually useful 🙂

  35. Good lord I love this article. This has been so helpful. ???

  36. This was extremely helpful. I have struggled with developing my own style for children’s illustration. I don’t know if this is the end of finding my own style but I learned a lot about myself and what I really want for my art doing this. I chose all children’s illustrators (Ed Young, Lee White, and Aki Sogabate). I’m sharing my final piece after following the steps. Sorry for the bad photography. I do t have good lighting in my apartment.

    • Hi Annie, I’m very happy you were able to use this article to your advantage. Thank you for including a photo of your result – it’s super awesome! You did a very nice job combining the separate influences into something that is new and unique but still feels comforting and familiar.

      A point of clarification if I may. This article is not necessarily meant to represent the end point of finding your own at style, but the beginning. Now that you have developed a unique style of your own, you’ll find that you continue to make additions and alterations as you pursue it. Ultimately, the style that you “end up with” will likely have tons of various influences, so please don’t feel like you have to “stick” with this. Feel free to make changes and alterations based on this. Thank you for sharing 🙂

  37. This was super helpful, I followed all the steps and I now understand what I can do to find my style, however, I’m struggling to sketch out a ‘base’ you could say. It just doesn’t come to me that I should instantly start drawing, and I need more time to think, but I want to start drawing and I don’t require more time to actually think about what I need to draw. Is there any help or advice you could give to me, sorry if you don’t understand what point I’m making.

    • Hi Claudia. I’m not sure I understand your question, but I’m going to give it my best shot based on what I think you’re asking. If I get it wrong, please follow up with another comment.

      I think perhaps the best way to apply the principles in this article to an original composition would be to start out with a basic idea of what you want to draw. This doesn’t have to be complicated or well-planned.

      For example, let’s say you want to draw a fairy. That in and of itself is enough to get you started.

      With a simple idea in mind, I usually sit down and do what I call “scribble compositions”. These are really rough scribbly ideas designed to explore the idea of a fairy drawing. Once I have one that I like, I’ll clean it up a bit to make it more clear. At that point I would begin to apply the principles of this article to create the finished work.

      I realize that’s a complicated process and that a short answer like this really doesn’t do it justice, but hopefully this advice will get you over the hump and get you drawing 🙂

  38. I’ve waited 18 years of my life trying to get a style but it never works probably because i’m dumb i never passed high school well back to the point. I’ve copied art it never worked, i copied my sister’s work and my mum says ” you do you, have your own style don’t EVER copy anyone else work because deep inside you, you have your own style”. But i don’t believe her because i tried and tried and tried and nothing gives me help not even this. 🙁

    • Hi Sophia, thank you for the comment. You’re mom is both right and wrong. She’s right in that deep inside you you do have your own style. She’s wrong when she says not to copy, because the best way to find your own style is to begin with copying the work of artists you admire.

      You say this didn’t work for you and I’m sorry to hear that. Please post the drawings you’ve done based on this article and I’d be happy to walk through them with you step by step. This will work for you of you approach it with dedication and patience. Looking forward to helping you further 🙂

  39. Hello Christopher I am doing a project at school on drawing. I have to interview an expert i was wondering if I could interview you?

  40. Pingback: Encountering the Style - Little Cathedral Blog

  41. hey! i’ve had a hard time with style all of my life. this article seemed like a really good idea. i have a really realistic style and want to make it more simple. (work is attached below) i really would like to get into drawing characters but can’t get simplistic faces right do you have any tips about changing my style and faces?

    • Hi Lizabeth! Very nice work, thank you for sharing it with us. The first step in moving towards a new style is to find artists you admire who work in the type of style you’re wanting to develop. Based on your comment I would recommend you take a look at Alex Ross (particularly his pencil work), Terry Moore, and possibly Mark Schultz. All of these guys work in a semi-realistic style that I think you might find appealing based on the drawing you’ve provided. Hope this helps. Let me know how it goes 🙂

  42. So far, high hopes for this. I think this will help greatly. I’ll reply to this soon and share my findings

  43. Hi, many thanks for this article. I am currently trying to establish my own artistic style and have tried to follow the first steps. I have my favourite artist – comic book artist Jock, my favourite piece of artwork but I seem to be stuck on artistic style as I cannot seem to put a label on it.

    The artistic style i really like is kind of steampunk, neo noir, 80’s cyberpunk but I’m not sure how I would classify that. Would you happen to have any helpful hints to narrow it down?

    Many thanks in advance


    • Hi James – can you post a couple of the images that you’re looking at please? That would help me help you 🙂

      • Thanks for getting back to me so quickly, here are a couple of images

      • Hi James, thank you for providing these images. They are super nice! You’ve got good taste. I think rather than try and “label” these images or pigeon hole them into a particular style, I’d be more inclined to analyze what the major artistic conventions are. All of these images are very cinematic, and while they’re all very different, they all have very distinct similarities. For example, each image relies heavily on large geometric constructs. The figurative elements are secondary but command attention by being placed in the foreground at a much darker value than any of the other elements. This is a technique commonly used in film, and since dark values come forward, this convention serves to create pictorial space. If I were looking to use these types of images as one of my stylistic elements, I would choose the deep pictorial space and dark foreground elements as the thing to take from these images. Does that make sense?

  44. Sorry, don’t know how to add multiple images to a single comment!

  45. Hello Mr.Kerry,
    I came across you article when looking for my own style.
    The three artists and art styles i ahem chosen are:
    Akira Toriyama,
    Clyfford Still
    Imagine Dragons album artwork.

    What do you think of this idea, and what do you think could come out of it?

    • Hi, these are fascinating choices. Let’s do this – please pick one image from each of these artists and post them here. We’ll break them down together and see what we get. Sound good?

  46. I’m thinking I need to reconsider one of my 3 artists. Or maybe breaking down each artist is harder than I thought??
    The three I picked are
    1. Kohei Horikoshi
    2. Ahmed Aldoori
    3. Happy D. Artist
    I’m having the most trouble with #3, I think. The thing that always sticks out and why I find her art resonates with me so much is the general aesthetic in all her pictures– I really like how she incorporates nature in her pieces. Although it’s what I like best from her art, I’m not sure if that’s the element I should be focusing on.

    • Hi! First of, I want you to know that I appreciate you helping us out here.^^
      I came here because I have a commission to do a wall/street art. The problem is all the commissions I’ve done in the past are just clients wanting me to copy the picture they wanted. Still, my recent works are just painting on canvas and I’m pretty good at copying them from sketching to getting the right colors. I’ve been like this since I was in grade school. And now, my new client sent me samples of what she wanted for her wall art. I told her I’ll send her choices of my sketch plans. It’s been three days since and I always end up copying other artist’s similar ideas/design of what she wanted. Since it’s a wall art in a resto bar and of course a lot of people will soon see it, I’m scared of plagiarism and I’m anxious coz I haven’t done anything. So I decided now is the right time to have my own art style. I was thrilled when I read your blog. It was great doing steps 1 and 2. I have filled back-to-back a long bond paper doing step 3. But by the time I got to step 4, I had the same problem with the others here on combining the elements. See, my ideal artists have completely different art styles. Because that’s what you also instructed. Here are the pieces I chose: The Yok’s cool and fun cartoon, Khaoskai’s gorgeous male character, and Kiptoes’ awesome street art, respectively. I love Yok’s line art and overall style. Same goes with Kai’s. And Kiptoe’s awesome art ideas. I love all the three’s style of coloring. I don’t know how to start. I never went to an art school or workshops. Tutorials online are all I’ve got. Please, help me.

      • Hi Andy, let’s take a look at these. Understand that all I can do is tell you what strikes me personally about each of these images and build a hypothetical style based on that. What strikes me may be different than what strikes you, but I hope to be able to give you a decent overview of how I personally would combine these three works into a new and unique style.

        The Kiptoe image has a sense of deep pictorial space, with more or less naturalistic coloring and minimal line work. The thing that strikes me most about this particular image is the use of foreshortening to make the main character appear to be coming off the surface and towards the viewer. So for this artist I would take the illusion of deep pictorial space as my stylistic element.

        The Khaoskai image is an awesome example of anime style work with thin, dead-weight line work and a soft, muted color palette. From this artist I would take the anime style and desaturated color scheme as my stylistic elements.

        Finally, Yok’s work is bold and graphic with a heavy reliance on awesome line-weight variation and flat, bold colors. There’s a conspicuous lack of naturalistic pictorial space in this image, and all the elements seem stacked flat on top of one another. From this artist I would take the bold line work and stacked space.

        So what we end up with is an anime influenced figurative work with soft, muted colors, bold expressive line work, and a deep sense of pictorial space that is created by stacking and overlapping otherwise flat shapes and through the use of aggressive foreshortening. Stylistically that would be the result of this combination of artists based on my personal reaction to the works you’ve included.

        The other part of this of course is story or theme. The types of characters you choose to draw and the actions you have them performing within the work will all influence the overall outcome of the finished work.

    • Hi Nico, I’d really like to help you as specifically as I can here. Will you please post an image of your choosing from each of these artists? That way we can discuss this with actual examples.

  47. Hi Chris, thanks for your reply. Yes, that does make sense to me I suppose what I could take out of that, and incorporate into my own art would be to create artwork that feels very cinematic to look at. It’s always been something that had resonated with me and I now have something that I can explore. Thanks again!

  48. Okay, let me explain the reason why i’m here.
    I’m a young girl who loves art. I paint since i was six years old and i got into it, for real. But i was searching some artist and wow… my art was barely nothing, and i wasn’t practicing much either. So i started practicing more and i was getting better but things were still messed up for me and my art. I am trying to find a style so that people look to my art and say “oh, this is minzy’s style!”, and i want to be proud of my art somehow. This tutorial worked for me, and i’m still looking forward to what i can develop while practicing, i’m trying to stay positive!! Anyway, thanks for sharing this tutorial, i’m grateful that it worked somehow.

  49. i liked the article. i chose very different styles of artwork – impressionism and water color. one has small brush strokes while other is smooth paint. i have tried thinking of few things but got a little muddled. Things that stood out were – i don’t like realism, all three were unique and something anyone will notice and talk about – not something ppl will just go by without noticing. but styles are so different that i don’t know how to incorporate in one style.
    Artists i chose were – Van Gogh, Szabo Zoltan and Gerogia O’Keeffe. would you have any suggestions?

    • Hi Kashika, I’d like to help you as specifically as I can here. Will you please post one work of your choosing from each of these artists and we’ll work through this with real world examples?

  50. Hey. Thank you so much for the helpful article! I’m always told to just “combine other styles,” and that never works out. This system really seems like it’d work, though!! I’m only a preteen, and my art isn’t as great as this piece I’ve chosen by Jenna Draws. I’m having some trouble incorporating this style into my own, though…

    • Can you help me choose some details from this drawing to put into my own?

    • Hi Mackenzi – thanks for the comment. The first step in incorporating stylistic elements of an artist work into your own is to analyze your chosen artist’s work. Usually this is best done with 3 or 4 images from the same artist so that you can pick out the stylistic elements they use over and over again. This is more difficult to do from a single work, but I’ll give it a shot.

      If I were analyzing this artist’s work based on this image alone, these are the things that stand out to me: exaggerated facial proportions (particularly of note are the larger than natural eyes), colorful skin tones (if you look carefully you can see blues and purples in the areas of flesh), hard and soft edges (notice how the edge along her upper chest is blurry but the line on the back of her neck is nice and crisp). So from this image I’d incorporate large eyes, nonrepresentational skin colors, and hard and soft edges. Does that make sense?

  51. I loved reading this. It has put some hope into my artistic mind. But the artist’s I really love are completely opposites of each other. One artist, I love the line work and details she puts into her work, the second artist, I love how she uses an under painting before going into color and how she blends her colors together to kind of look like an oil painting and the third, I love her use of watercolor techniques. The first two artist work digitally and the last one is traditional. But after going through all of this, I’m still feeling kind of lost because each of them are so different to me and I’m not quite sure how to put them together to create something that’s unique to me. Please help

    • Hi Samantha – that they’re very different is a good thing. If you’d like, upload an image or two from each artist here and I’ll go over it with you. 🙂

      • Alright ?

      • ..

      • Hi Samantha – thanks for the images. I think the three of these combined together would make for an awesome original style. The first two artists, at least in the images you’ve shown, have plain backgrounds. If it were me, I would use the thematic (animal/human) material and line work from your first artist, and the anatomical proportion and painterly style of the second artist, combined with the integration of figure and abstract background of the third artist. Hope this helps 🙂

  52. Will you help me combine these three pictures, I’m having a hard time figuring out how to put them together?!?

    • Hi Esmeralda – the problem with combining the three images you’ve chosen is that they are, for all intents and purposes, the same style. Each one has large eyes, small chin, relatively childlike features, and each one has minimal or no color. So it’s clear to me that you like this style, but now you need to pick two other very different styles. I would recommend picking someone who uses color in a way that you really love, and perhaps choosing an artist who works exclusively in ink so we can “borrow” their line work. As it is, these images are just too similar to use by themselves for this exercise.

    • hey Esmeralda,

      Who drew the bottom left picture, I’d like to look into them

  53. Hi Christopher, just yesterday I got the results of the second phase to enter art school and I couldn’t pass to the third so I thought I’ll study on my own, but because I have been doing that for a year and I feel like I am not good at anything (I always do very different things, one day is digital art, other watercolor, charcoal, acrylics, realism, anime style, landscapes, etc.) I wanted to master something and I won’t be able to stick to one material, so is better if I develop a style. I found this months ago but is time to finally do it. The problem is I’m not going anywhere in the step 3 with my favorite artist Hiro. The first two are somehow a piece of cake, but I can’t think anything about my favorite one, I’m just amazed at how good he is, I like how even if it seems to be done very carefully and thinking of the smallest detail, it looks very loosely and sketchy and love that he uses watercolor; and that’s all I see, I’m having a really hard time analyzing it, I just see a contradiction.
    I would be very gratefull if you can help me with that one, though I’m already gratefull for this amazing post.

  54. Something from Sakimi-chan

  55. I tried it and I’m very pleased with the results, this image is before doing this.

    • And after doing it.

      • Hi Mocte – thanks for the awesome examples. It looks like you’ve got it worked out and the results are really beautiful! Very very nice work. If you’re still having trouble and would like me to help you with an analysis of Hiro, I’d be happy to do that. Please pick three more images from Hiro that you like and we’ll go over them together and dissect his style.

      • Thank you very much, and yes I’m still having trouble so here are the others pictures.

      • Other with just ink

      • Hi Mocte – once again, thanks for including these examples. I’m actually a very big fan of Hiro’s work. Defining his style can be a bit tricky, but let’s give it a shot.

        Hiro has a tendency towards generally more naturalistic figure proportions, especially with his female images. He still uses the traditional anime features, but their proportion to the overall structure of the head is more realistic. This general realism is nicely contrasted by his loose and expressive line work. Most often when anime leans toward realism, the line work tightens up and the use of screen tones to indicate form is often used. Essentially what Hiro is doing is breaking with tradition and combining the quintessential anime style with realism. He carries this approach into his watercolors, shying away from the slick digital look for a much more expressive, natural medium.

        Honestly I think his work is beautiful, but he’s so unique that I would hesitate using him as one of my influences. Most likely it would just turn out to be an inadequate copy of an awesome original artist. Would love to hear your thoughts 🙂

      • And this one with watercolor

      • He also does digital art.

      • Hi again, I agree with your analysis and I doubt I’m suited to use him as one of my influences, because if I couldn’t understand him that just makes it clear that my way of thinking and drawing is very different. Still, I want to try out how he uses watercolors because I’m very attracted to very loose drawings and paintings though I’m very slow and methodic. His linework is in another level so it’s out of the question. Right now I’m focusing on very strong contrast and I have already decided the facial features I’m going to use in my style (I choose how to draw the eyes, nose, and lips).
        Although I want something more natural. I’ll leave some examples.
        This is what I’m more attracted to, something similar to comic.

      • Hi again. You’ve got good taste 🙂 I think I see where you’re trying to get and I think in the end it’s going to work out nicely for you. If you don’t mind, do me a favor – I’d love to see some of your original work. Maybe if I can see what you’re doing we can work together to get you where you’re going. Please post 3 or 4 of your best drawings here. Looking forward to it.

      • And this is another way I want to draw that pops out in my mind quite often. I’m focusing on very strong contrast because is what I like the most, but sometimes I feel uncomfortable thinking that maybe I should try to draw this way.
        Anyway, thank you so much for helping me all this way.

      • I found out what is bothering me, my tastes are changing so I’ll redo this after experimenting doing the same picture in different ways to see what I really like the most.

      • Hi and thank you. Here are some examples.

      • Here I have trouble with the suit. So I don’t think I’ll do it this way again.

      • I really liked the result, though it was very difficult so I think I’ll change my coloring method.

      • The last one I did.

  56. Hi! I’m having some issues combining my chosen styles. They’re all very different, and I’ve tried them all seperately and been at least moderately successful, but putting them together isn’t going too well. The artists I picked are Pernile Orum, the people at Marvel Comics (I don’t know the name/names), and Gerard Way. They’re in that order in the picture, and the third really reminds me of Tim Burton, which I’ve also tried that style and I really like it. My current style is a lot like the first one, kinda Disney-esque, but I’d like to push it more towards the third. I guess I just need help. Thanks, if anyone responds!

    • Hi Morgan – considering the artwork you’ve chosen here and the mention of Tim Burton, here’s what I would try if it were me: I would look to Tim Burton for figure proportion and over all weirdness. I’d look to the Marvel comic artists for their use of solid line work and areas of big, bold black. I’d finish it off with the relatively flat, unblended colors of the Disney style animations. Combining these three elements from each of the artists you’ve mentioned would instantly produce a unique and recognizable style. Does that make sense?

      • Yeah, thanks! I’ve continued messing with the art the past few days and switched Marvel to Tim Burton. I used a Disney sort of facial structure, Tim Burton-ish hair, and Gerard Way’s style features (except mouth, that was kinda my own thing). I haven’t worked with bodies yet, but I’ll try your suggestion too. I always like to try new art stuff. Thanks again!

      • Hi Morgan – this looks awesome! I really think you’re on to something here. I like it a lot 🙂

    • Beautiful drawing you have, everyone. I prefer death is amazing. ;-p

  57. Hi. The article sounds very helpful. I’ve been drawing for 4 years now, and i always struggle with coming up with my own ideas of drawing. Mostly because whenever I draw, I try to make good art. There’s a tiny online audience of my drawings, and I feel like I have to keep up with that expectation, and often in a hurry to make and upload good art, i copy from my favourite artists (with credit, of course). Your ideas are super helpful, but how do I find how to draw? If i pick random subjects and they don’t turn out to be as good as I imagined them to be in my head, the disappointment leads to demotivation. How do I find what to draw, and how do I allow myself to make bad art?

  58. Dear Christopher,
    I am not sure if this site was a place for anime graphic artists to forum, whatever, I wanted to express my gratitude for your information and to say that was very helpful for amateur artists like me (I am an architect and designer not a painter) and please don’t laugh when you see my expression reflected on a piece of paper as attached herewith, just for your information as you have awaken someone’s asleep feeling inside :-)thank you again and good luck.

    • Hi Munkhzul – thank you for the very kind comment, and I never laugh at good art! While most of the comments on this particular article are from anime artists, the article itself was meant for anybody looking for their own artistic style. I’m happy you found it and I’m happy it helped. Thank you for including an example of your work – I like it very much 🙂

  59. WOW this is an INCREDIBLE article! As I was doing research for my own post on steps to finding signature style as fashion designers working with clothes, I stumbled upon your page. Now I’m totally going to try this out for my illustrations! Don’t get me wrong, I love my skill and so do my fans/shoppers, but I’ve always felt lacking when I would see my favorite illustrators artwork. They have such cool unique styles and I feel basic haha like most other high fashion illustrators. I’ll let you know how my experiment goes and post a before/after! (bookmarked your post 🙂

  60. Hello Mr. Kerry. I am in love with this article and I can’t wait to get started. I have been having a lot of trouble with my art- it’s hard to explain but I’ll give it my best shot. I have a great idea planned out and I’ve painted the picture, and I like how it turned out, but something’s missing. I’ve always had this goal to make something so amazing that it brings tears to someone’s eyes and I know that’s a long shot but I at least want something that will scream me. In other words, I lack confidence. Any advice?

  61. What if what I love the most is hyper realist nearly photo quality paintings but I am well aware I do not have any level of talent to create that and am looking more to find a cartoon style one which I know I can create because I’ve done it before. Should I just look at my favorite cartoon artists of all time and ignore my favorite hyper realistic artists? I’m talking like my favorite artist ever is Sorayama but there’s no way I’m that good.

    • Hi Billie – I don’t know that I’d recommend giving up on a hyper realistic approach just because you feel like your skill set doesn’t match your aspirations. Rather, I’d recommend working studiously to improve your work with regard to its realistic qualities. Having said that, hyper realism is a style in and of itself, and it’s difficult to simply pull elements from such a well defined genre. Sorayama, for example, would be extremely difficult to pull anything useful from simply because his style is so uniquely his. However, it may be interesting to combine a more stylized “cartoony” figure with the hyper realistic accouterments that Sorayama often utilizes.

  62. The three artist I chose were Ursula decay , fukari and Valerie garnace but I don’t know what elements to choose from out of each artists style
    I don’t know what to do

  63. I really enjoy this article, i have been searching for a style now for five years, but have been so discouraged. For the most part all the paintings i have done i have not been satisfied with. The people who most inspire me are Mark Ryden, Dilka Bear, Nicoletta ceccoli and Emily Winfield Martin. Here are some of the illustrations i have been working on i still feel though something is missing.

  64. And here is another image on another illistration of mine.

  65. And here is the last one. I really would appreciate your feed back and your suggestions.

    • Hi Rosanna. Thank you for including the examples of your work. They’re very nice 🙂 Regarding the four artists you mentioned – from the standpoint of this article, each of these artists work in a style that is too similar to each other for them to be viable choices. If it were me, I would pick my very most favorite artist from this group as my starting point, and then I’d think way outside the box. For example, combining Mark Ryden’s proportions and oddness with Modigliani’s use of line and color, and Caravaggio’s use of dramatic light and shade. The combination of those three artists would put a unique spin on this type of work and be something familiar but unlike anything else, anyone else, is doing.

      • Hello, thank you for replying and your feedback. I agree with what you said in regards to the artist that i have chosen, they are very similar. I have been thinking long and hard on this, but i think the artist that catches my attention most, is emily winfield martin.
        I absolutely love the soft colors and i just love the quirky magic she catches with each of her painting the last thing i enjoy about her work is how effortless her work translates from children books, to stationary to even doll.

        My hope is to one day to become an illustrator/comic book artist but i feel( in my opinion only) that the characters i create won’t translate to anything other then paintings and if im very honest with myself, i highly doubt they will see the light of a gallery much less an art show.

        Other then these artist i have listed, i have also a strong love for alphonse mucha as well for virginia sterrett anything during the art noveau period is gorgeous to me. I have a lot of favorites that is for sure.

        By the way thank you very much for introducing modigliani’s work its lovely. I used to paint girls with elongated necks. And the paintings of his subjects with completly blakened out eyes are so creepy and striking i a wonderful way.

  66. Hi Chris, I wanted your opinion on my fairy drawing? I really love art and sometimes I’m happy with the way some of my drawings turn out. Just not all of the time. My problem is I worry too much.

    • Hi Maryann,
      I know I’m not Chris lol, but I’m 13 and I think I can give you some tips? Ignore me if you don’t want my feedback ^^
      Anyways, your art is good! Anatomy is crucial though, I will give you some constructive criticism. Her arm is looking a little twisted as it goes back, I recommend looking at your own arm/your own body if you want the best anatomy help. One of her legs does look a little crooked, make sure the dress lines up with the legs. Don’t make her body too long either. Try making her hair flowy! Remember that hair is almost alive, so if there is any wind, let her hair move. Keep in mind that drawing individual strands of hair isn’t good either unless you are using a realistic style. You could also give her some hair covering her face for a more natural look.
      I hope my comment is useful, I’m not a pro but you can have a look at my instagram: @misoramenart . Your art also has a nice color scheme. Thanks for sharing it.
      -Kyoung-Mi Won

  67. Hello! I’d just like to thank you for writing the article. It really gave me motivation to start doing art again. I chose these three artists: Mookie (top left), aniyoongi (top right) and salmonella_fish (bottom left). Also attached is a picture of my notes, which I took seriously and tried to write as much as I could. 🙂 I think I’ll also send you a picture of my style when I’m finished. I have yet to get there tho. But really really thank you. You’ve helped a lot already.

  68. Hi, what a great tactic for finding an art style. Thank you for sharing this I think it will really help. I really like the artists Naoshi Arakawa, Sui Ishida, and whoever the artist is of Yuri On Ice or Death Note. Could you possibly help with finding an art style that will fit me?

  69. Pingback: Architecture Illustrations (and how to find your own style in art) | I Am That Small Girl

  70. Hello, I love anime, I put my drawing in the anime stuff. Hope you love it. Meow!

  71. Pingback: Finding My Artistic Style – Dusty Palette

  72. thanks, this is an extremely useful article! you really condensed something daunting into something actionable!

  73. I wouldn’t say I am an artist but I do draw an insane amount but I cant imagine it. Any thing I draw is from someone else. I can draw great when I look at something but not when I’m on my own, what do I do if I wanna be better?

    • Hi isaak!
      I’m not Chris lol but I’ll try to give you my help.
      I recommend trying out weird styles that you’ve never used before, but you like. Try A simple style that you like, and a intricate style that you like. Try using the styles that you like in one style altogether. I’ve tried using eyes from other styles, but drawing my own character with it. Try something new and different! Remember that even though you think your art is bad, you need to practice it or you won’t see improvement.
      -Kyoung-mi Won

  74. This was very helpful! I used to have a original style but people said it looks to much like lavaneder Townes so I used this to tweak it a bit! Kinda sad to let the old style go since a lot of my friends were rlly proud of it, o well

  75. Hi. I read your article. I have a hard time understanding things but I wanted to make sure one thing was perfectly clear. That my three choices were different. Please let me know if I need to change anything. I will be putting the photos in line cause I don’t know how to post more than one. I will say one is adventure time, one is Tim burton and one is Disney.

  76. Oh thank you for this actually helpful post. I’m a painter mostly and have always loved the Impressionist, Realism, and Romantism movements the best but like a but from a bunch of movements. Your article helped me to understand me better and why my paintings often organically look like the one attached when I’m wanting something a little bolder and real looking. Using your method above I found that tho I adore the blues of Starry Starry Night the Movement across the painting is what originally and still draws me in first. That the Deep colors and darkness of JMW Turner’s Moonlight A Study At Millbank is the main “wow” factor in this seascape for me. And the expression / emotion on the face of The Roman Widow by Rosetti as well as the intense lighting in the painting are close to a tie for me. Since I rarely draw or paint portraits or people, usually landscapes, seascapes, and still lives, I’m going to try and always combine these three together and see if I’m happier with my outcomes: movement (across / around canvas / paper) + deep / rich colors + strong / intense light ((basically more light then I tend to organically give, richer less muted colors then I tend to organically do, and enough movement to draw the eyes around the piece)). Once again thanks for the great article.

  77. I have followed the steps, but now I have no clue how to “mesh” the styles together! You can see my notes on everything on the bottom, what I like about each style, but they’re so different that it’s giving me such a hard time trying to figure out what to keep and not keep! Like, for example, how image #2 is cartoony (and image #3 too, I guess), but image #1 is more realistic. If anyone responds, thank you!

    • I’m super discouraged right now, because my art looks REALLY BAD. Like, a mix between cartoony, terrible shading, and bland colors… I haven’t tried making any art with this method you’ve shown, but like I said, I have no clue how to start…

      • Hi Bella!
        I’m not Chris, but I can give you my tips!
        I see your notes at the bottom, and circle ONE thing you like about each style. Because one is simple and one is realistic and detailed, it is probably hard. I think you should chose one, either realistic and detailed, or simple and chibi-like. It will be hard to make these three styles into one, but try different things! If you have artist block, try doing mindless drawing. I usually doodle mindlessly in school and I’ve found my style from doing that. Just don’t do it in school haha. I find that I draw best when I’m bored, so bore yourself out and then try drawing and referencing from a book instead of getting distracted with heaps of different styles on the internet. Reply to me which notes you circle 🙂
        -Kyoung-mi Won

    • i would keep the hair of the first one and the shading of the third one the 2nd one would be best if you keep the body structure and ears and tail

  78. Oh my god Thank you thank you thank yooou!
    I started selling my art but it’s not really working yet and I wanted to develop my own style more, and but more free and creative. I went through Youtube tutorials about this and none of them helped because, as you said, it wasn’t a clear plan to follow and it really discouraged me. BUT I FOUND THIS ARTICLE!! It’s so awesome, now I just want to get started with these steps.

    You made me super motivated, thank you so much : D

  79. Thank you so much for this article. I spent quite a few hours today, looking at more than 200 paintings. I tried to find ones that I was immediately attracted to. It made me realize that there are certain elements that I consistently liked in other people’s art, irrespective of the artform or medium. I am surprised I had never figured it out before and was only able to do it after reading your article.

    I am not a very good artist so I haven’t been able to figure out what I can make, but I finally have a goal for what I want my art to look like and what I want people to feel when they look at it.

  80. fantastic! love your ideas. having been a graphic designer for years, i have neglected my own personal projects … and i need to get back to my own work … in my own style! thanks!

  81. Thank you very much!

  82. I’ve been drawing for all my life im almost 15 and felt like i needed my own style instead of drawing my favorite characters. I really like the idea of this step by step. Im gonna go and give this a shot and see how it turns out:)

    • I don’t normally comment on articles, but I really like this one.

      Just wanted to say thanks for this. Really, I haven’t tried it yet, but this makes a lot of sense to me. I draw a lot, and I get complimented by my work, but I feel like there’s always something missing to it. I just don’t know what to do with it. I try a lot of styles, which isn’t bad, but really I just end up with artworks that are very different from each other. They’re all over the place, so I’m never really satisfied. I just looking for some stability I guess, so I ended up looking at different portfolios for “inspiration”, and I just end up creating decent artwork, but ultimately lacking character, and just overall a knockoff version of the original (hehe). This method, I feel, just helps you articulate what you naturally gravitate to, and know why and how you want these elements used.

      Although I understand the arguments of a few in the comments, I don’t entirely agree with them. I don’t feel this is “cheating”. I don’t think the end result would be “manufactured”, just guided. The elements you would choose, will be interpreted and used by you differently. I think that through this, you’re just articulating what you want, and thus having a clearer idea about how you want to convey that feeling, and how you want your art to speak…

  83. This posting was so helpful, thank you! I actually work in textiles (fibre art in the US?) and am finding my way back into own work after years of teaching undergrads (loved the job, but little time for your own stuff). Interesting, like you I worked in a famous art gallery and musuem before that – loved that too. This exercise forces you to think deeply and is a bit like an art school exercise in itself. My paintings were first Joan Eardley a Scottish artist, snow scene, a Matisse of pensive lady and a decorative art doll, sorry pics will not download at present. What do I like and why? Snow scene, loose brushstrokes, close colour tones (whites, creamy, pale slightly dirty tones) and strong contrasting black. Still, peaceful feeling, contrasting with the energy in the application of paint. Pensive lady is close tones too, big, rounded organic shapes, distorted, unrealistic, slightly abstracted, still feeling. Doll is cream coated and pale white skin, black shoes, wintery figure, slightly romantic, feminine curves, elongated limbs, not realistic body shapes, slightly whimsical. There are things in common here, which had not seen before! In fact realise now that my own drawings of landscape from my window in Scotland are a bit like these – loose, female forms, simplied, close tones with strong black. Just realising this has helped me a lot, so will try to retain these elements when doing new drawings for textile work, many thanks again!

  84. I have been painting for many years and have many different styles but could not figure out how to develop one that screams “ME”.. With your help, I chose Julie Fain, Anne Frank and Elspbeth Mclean. I realized I LOVE vibrant colors with plenty depth as well. I also love fantasy and romance. I am so excited to get painting!! Thank you so much!

  85. This seems helpful but I have very bad art block right now and ask lots of people how they developed there style and my art block got to a point where I was gonna stop drawing also my ‘friend’ and ART TEACHER! Would always point out flaws aka the whole drawing calling it nothing and just a mess this put me down on a style I really loved and now I can’t draw it anymore what does everyone suggest I do because I love drawing and I’ve done it since I was not even 10

  86. I always enjoyed art and loved drawing/ painting my favorite works and after seeing them, I would get inspired & wanted to have something that resembles them but is made by myself.I felt pretty confident each time because I could copy other works really good, but when I tried doing something new, It looked like a 5 y/o’s drawing… So I stopped it and barely drew anything & when I did, I would just get frustrated and sad and leave it half-done. But this article, it looks exactly what I wanted! My own original work with elements of my favorite art works. Even though I’m still a little scared, since I don’t know if I can pull it off & it’s been a little while since I drew anything, I’m excited and following the steps. I hope this works for me and thank you so so much for sharing your experience!

  87. Hello Christopher,
    thank you for the interesting article. I don’t know if you’re still active, but like a lot of others, I struggle to find a way to combinde the elements I like of the three drawings I chose. Maybe you can help me. I hope including links works, but I can’t just upload someone’s art on this site. So, here we go:

    First one: http://eluvisen.tumblr.com/image/166660984981
    Drawing like this is actually my goal. I like the soft brushes, the way the skin and the eyes are drawn, the shadows and lights.

    Second one: https://toemiel.deviantart.com/art/Evie-Shepard-Commission-669141425
    Here I like the composition, the background is beautiful. I love the blue highlights in her hair and on the armour.

    Third one: http://rock-paperback-scissors.tumblr.com/tagged/fan+art
    What I like here is the feeling you get when you look at the picture. It has something mystical and sad, it just suggests a lot of emotions. Also, of course, lighting and shadows are very well used.

    And now I’m stuck – I don’t really know where to start. It would be cool if you could help me out. Thanks a lot!

  88. I love this tutorial :)) I’m mixing michelangelo (use of light and dark, dynamic work), hayao miyazaki (use of color/watercolor, soft& rounded lines), and the style of Tracey J. Butler who creates the lackadaisy comic (bolder line work)…. We shall see how this turns out…..

  89. Thank you so much for this tutorial! I have been struggling with my art style for so long! I haven’t tried to draw anything yet but I’m sure to now!

  90. Hi, all. I’m 13, and although most say I draw really well, I feel that there is something missing. My big three influences are-
    Jim Lee
    Stuart Immonen
    Phillip Tan
    Please let me know on what I can improve

  91. Bonjour! thank you so much for this website! i finally figured out my own style by this. also, whoever thinks their art is horrible and useless, don’t ever think that! your style is unique and magnificent the way it is. Loves you all! thank you very much Chris you helped me a lot. Merci beaucoup!

  92. more art

  93. I am a professional artist and I have been painting for almost ten years. I do sell my work but I still struggle finding one style even when, I am extremely creative and I never run out of ideas. It is frustrating to approach all these ideas in so many styles that do not help me have a signature or be recognizable. I can’t thank you enough for this advice. I already wrote everything but I will try to make the painting this coming week and if it works as I think it will, I will never forget you help me find my path.

  94. This was one of the most interesting articles I read to help put some guidelines in place for someone trying to find their true art “voice” I’ve been an artist my whole life and built my 20 year career on being versatile for what the client wants often producing a multitude of styles as a visual designer and fine artist. However, for the first time in over a decade I have rekindled my love of painting and now realize that it might be important for me to have a “style”. I can now pin point things I love and always gravitate towards doing with my experimentation (thanks to reading this) but not sure that I have style yet that feels cohesive from piece to piece. I’m also certainly looking for that level of sophistication in my work that galleries like the MFA would crave to have me install at. I’m going to give this a go… but I truly find more than one inspiration and I find the parameters challenging! Do you offer a online one on one review style session?

  95. Hi! I’ve recently gotten into drawing people, but i’m having difficulty using the strategy in the article. I want to do a mostly cartoony style, but I only follow a few artists stuff and its all pretty similar. But i mostly like the way Starr ( The first picture below) Does their facial expressions and the way CJ does bodies, mainly face structure and the legs. Kinda random but its what I got. If you’ve got any tips that would be great 🙂

  96. Starrs faces

  97. Hey, im sure it does but would this also help with painting style. I’ve been painting for 5 years and it just hit me a recently but I don’t have my own style and that my work doesn’t feel like MY work. It feels like a worse versions of someone elses.

  98. Hey. Uhmm is it okay if I use some references? ’cause look one day i show my drawing to my father then he say it’s beautiful but he ask me why am I using some photos. then I answered: “i used some references. ” then he say that: “why are you using some references? huh? why can’t you use your head? why can’t you use you imagination? ” then once i watched a youtube video that its fine to use some references. uhmm still I have many styles, i don’t know why, my style is depends on what i’m trying to tell. like that. can you help me if i still use only one style or what. thank you in advance . *heart heart*

  99. Thanks so much for this! I’m so tired of people making fun of some of my drawings, so I was looking for a new style. This helped me with that, and now I have a new OC. Her name is Dart.

  100. i am deeply pleased about are post about ‘how to find own drawing style’ can i translate in to korean and Post on my blog? so that i may help someone who can’t read English well.

  101. hello i want to try this because i really want to find my own style what i want to ask is that what type of artist you mention like youtube artist,manga artist(mangaka),anime artist (animator)

  102. Hi, i tried this but im still not satisfied. I chose the artists (two of them are also YouTubers): Kasey Golden, kelogsloops, Keith Haring. Do you have an idea what I can do? Because it still doesn’t look like anything unique where I’m happy with and it’s kind of the same like I already had.

  103. Hi, I tried this but I’m still not satisfied with how it looks. The artists I chose (two of them are youtubers) are Kasey Golden, kelogsloops, Keith Haring. It kind of still looks like my art as it was before.. so do you maybe have a tip or a new idea?

  104. O haha sorry I posted it two times

  105. This is a good approach. I taught Originality in Design at Art Center and the Gnomon school and we used a similar methodology. The only comment I would have is once you try using 3 artists works as inspiration go to the next step and use 3 cultural/scientific ideas as influence. In my class the mantra was BE A SOURCE and using direct input from other artists work, even when combined together in a specific complex way, will usually result in derivative work that may be appealing but often won’t be original or unique. Think of Cubism as an example of a more advanced approach; it was born from the combination of 3 profound and disparate inputs not the direct influence of other artists work. By blending the primal force of primitive African art, brand new scientific concepts of space and time/relativity and the highest level of European painting technique Picasso and Braque created an indelible personal style and an artistic revolution that still resonates today.

    • Hi,

      I love the idea of using the cultural/scientific ideas how would you go about implementing this? More specifically how could you make the cultural/scientific idea visual?

      I understand what you are saying about cubism being born out of african art, scientific concepts of space and time along with european painting techniques but cant quite fathom how they original concept was transferred to art?


      • Ahh, yes, that is the hard part! There is no real clear ‘way’ to succeed at this. however there are techniques that can open your eyes to deeper possibilities. A starting point can be to try and make a simple graphic language that captures the concept or theory. One successful example was one of my students Thom Tenery, who is now a famous concept artist. For the cultural influence he chose a sport called buildering, which is the rock climbing of man made structures as his influential idea. He then traces time-lapse movements of climbers scaling architecture and made an alphabet of ‘moves’ as graphic symbols. Once he had his language figured out he could apply it to the design of ships, characters, environments etc and eventually make 3D models that include forms from the same graphic family. If you were a fine artist you could have done the same process and applied it to you oil paintings or whatever other medium you chose.

  106. Hello! So I just read your article (I really liked it) and I have a few questions. I, myself think I have some sort of talent for art- I’m really good at copying things from pictures. But it’s really frustrating because without a picture I can’t really do anything. I would really be like to be able to develop my own style, but I feel as though I don’t even know enough to just draw without any reference. I personally think I should study and work hard to understand anatomy and the other aspects of art, but it’s honestly kind of discouraging because I feel like I’m kind of starting at square one. Should I wait before I try out your steps? I’d love to hear what you have to say! Thank you!

  107. Sir….
    Can this principles be applied to any art?
    I mean i am a magician
    Can i use your principles taught in this blog to develope my performing style or persona by studying the work and persona of David Copperfield, Penn and Teller and Lance Burton?

  108. Pingback: Needs STUFF - 6 Ways to Overcome Artist's Block! – Quiet Sundays

  109. Ok this will either sound funny or tragic but whatever. I’ve been drawing since I was five and never stopped. I’m 49 now, an art school dropout who went on to have a career in graphic design and art direction. I drew for fun whenever the art I was being paid to do wasn’t creatively satisfying. The thing that took me the longest was developing a style that I both enjoyed and felt like was worth refining. I didn’t care if it was immediately recognizable by others, just that I could see it as distinct from (albeit not BETTER than) the style of my main influences. I got there, thank goodness, but it’s still evolving. This article might seem like it’s prescribing a factory-like method as a shortcut to style development, but that is a perfectly valid way of reaching one’s goal because it doesn’t preclude anyone from experimenting or going off in weird directions. I always straddled the line between graphic design and illustration, and my style lives in that zone, but it is never kept me from doing “weird” one-offs when the mood strikes. Had I needed or wanted to reach a style quickly, the advice here would have been solid. Well done.

  110. Such a wicked article dude! ?

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  112. Hello, thank you for this article! I’ve also experienced the frustration of reading articles with no actionable tips. “Just practice” doesn’t really give me any direction. This article did. I look at my favorite artists and think “wow I wish my art looked like this” but I just never thought of actually incorporating elements of their works into mine. So thank you for making it so clear!

    For this exercise, I chose an artist that works almost exclusively digitally with a very pixie-like and soft style, another artist that works primarily in watercolor with a vibrant but light color palette and…the whole of impressionism, which I am aware is very broad (I was thinking early Monet, especially Impression Sunrise). All three of these artists work in different mediums. Most of my art is just basic colored pencils (I don’t have any “fancier” colored pencils such as prismacolors). What I’m wondering is how I can (or ~if~ I can) incorporate the aspects I like of all these artists/art movements (pixie-like features, vibrant colors, and dynamism) in a medium that doesn’t really allow for much of the latter two. Thank you!

  113. Hello, I really liked this article! It is indeed very interesting and I think it will be helpful. After I read it I started trying to apply it but I have come to the conclusion that mostly what I managed to capture from the art pieces I chose were their elements in common. I hope it’s okay if I put them here so you can help me. I had some trouble choosing between 2 of Carlos Quevedo and 3 of Janice Sung, but I managed to choose 1 of Noah Bradley. I think you will notice which ones are from the same artist.

    (I’m not sure how to add more than 1 picture to the same reply so if it doesn’t work I’ll do it separately).

  114. Now the next 3 are by Janice Sung

  115. second one by Janice

    • third one by Janice

      • (I just noticed I forgot to click “reply” to some of my comments, sorry they are separated). Now I’ll write here what I wrote about the art pieces (it’s mostly some random sentences more than paragraphs, I hope you manage to understand it).

        1. Art piece by Noah Bradley “Every Inclination of the Human Heart”:

        – What grabbed my attention first?
        Orange. Penetrating, imposing orange. The power it irradiates and the atmosphere of fantasy it creates.
        – Why?
        Because it’s centered and more powerful than the other colors in the picture, brighter. It intrigues me, it makes me feel like I am inside of that world. It paralyzed me, hypnotized me. The eyes. The brightness, and the darkness. The shapes on the wall, runes.
        – Elements/colors:
        Warm colors, bright and dark, a lot of contrast. Bright yellow and orange are the dominants. There’s symmetry, a lot of it. Round shapes, curves. There’s some sharp elements where the darkness starts but the sharpest elements are the colors.
        – Why do I feel so connected to it?
        I really like symmetry as a perfectionist, and sharp colors, contrast. Especially in fantasy. The questions it creates in me. Mystery. Inspiration. Female figure. Doodles/runes representing my love for abstract art (it is something I do when I am not thinking, just abstract doodles). Human bodies my love for characters in art. The scene, my love for fantasy and art that captures specific moments of a (possible) story (I am also a writer so this type of art pieces really inspire my writing and that’s probably why I love them so much, they have so much to tell). Background my love for digital paintings of landscapes, places.

        It makes me feel like I want my art to be this powerful. That people glance at it and turn back because it caught their attention, then they feel like they have to stop to analyze it, to find its meaning. Then they can’t stop looking at it, and they create their own story. And they need to come back… 1, 2, 3, 20 times.

        2. Art pieces by Carlos Quevedo “Angelus Mortis” (the one with the skull mask) and “Mechanical Dragon”:

        I love how he mixes sci-fi, fantasy, realism and older eras in the same picture. All in one.
        – Caught my attention first:
        Angelus Mortis: Yellow. The bright half-moon and the helmet wing with a dark half-moon. Then the face, the yellow tear. Then the paper pieces with latin language and the hair.
        Mechanical Dragon: The helmet. Red. Wing. Fire. Steampunk. Lips. Wrist.
        – This art pieces represent my love for photo manipulation and it mixes itself with digital painting.
        – Again bright warm colors are the first elements that grab my attention. Symmetry is also really present.
        – I love that there are so many details to look at.
        – Contrast:
        Angelus Mortis: Delicacy, girl’s face, hair / strength, power, armor, skull
        Mechanical Dragon: Face, single hair / helmet of skull, metal
        Dress / ripped wing
        – Angelus Mortis is more emotional, I am a sensitive person so that is very important to me and it catches my attention. The colors are softer. It’s like “Mechanical Dragon” but broken, softer. And sadness inspires me, a lot, it softens me and makes me want to write and explore my feelings. Mechanical Dragon gives me more confidence, it makes me feel powerful, makes me want to try, want to act.

        3. Art pieces by Janice Sung “Ego” (white background), “Citrus” (light blue background) and “CoCo” (red background):

        – In the 3 pieces the first element that caught my attention were the faces. Their expressions, and their frame, the hair.
        – Bold combinations, but soft colors. Not as bright as the other pieces I chose of different artists.
        – Simple color backgrounds, giving all the focus to the main character.
        – Mix of fashion sense, minimalism, and collage-ish atmosphere made me choose this artist.
        – Female figure.
        – Modern + nature.
        – Geometrical shapes.
        – Kind of a rough texture on the characters and elements but not background, which is plain. Contrast.
        – Symmetry again.
        – Warm and cold colors. Warm caught my attention first.
        – “Ego” takes risks, I like that. I don’t know if I have courage to do that but I like it. Bold. Collage- ish (I love collages).
        – Realism only in characters (shadows), rest is abstract and minimalist (almost no shadows).

  116. This article actually works. Now I have a new style without waiting for several years to develop one.

    • My problem, is that I like too many things. I like to call myself a “jack of all trades” because I like and create many things in different ways/mediums. It may not seem bad, but it is for me as I get overwhelmed often. I cant create if I cant even figure out what and how I want to create. I wanna create everything and I want to do everything in different mediums. Which is why I want to establish my own style. I need some sort of stability.
      Hopefully I can learn from this, and establish some sort of order in my chaotic life.

  117. I think I understand everything when it comes to using 2D art for drawing style development, but I don’t understand how 3D art can be used for developing a drawing style. Do you think you can explain how 3D art can be good for creating a drawing style as much as you can? Sorry if i sound needy, but I just want to follow your given instructions properly.

  118. Hi! Thank you SO MUCH for this article. I’ve been looking for something like this for a while. I do more abstract type art. Can this process be applied to abstract art? I’ve been painting for a while now, but I feel like each piece is stand alone and not a cohesive style. I’d LOVE an evaluation. You can see all of my paintings on Instagram @paintinshanghai.

  119. Please please help me to understand style ,very frustrating, not sleeping peacefully.
    I hv uploaded three lmages of my taste

  120. Shagufta Image 2

  121. Shagufta Image 3

    Please please please help ??????????????

  122. Hello Chris! Thanks for your great article…
    Here there are my favorite artists artworks.

  123. And the third one

  124. Ok so I did step 1-3 and tried starting on step 4 but it seems impossible to combine the three artists I chose. They are
    Hel Covell https://www.instagram.com/p/BumKCnclHYR/
    Manjit Thapp https://www.instagram.com/p/BoKFEx4gzK6/
    James Jean https://www.instagram.com/p/BwS9_AlHBnp/
    So especially for James Jean the thing that I focused on was the renaissance-painting factor, with lots of things going on, details, lots of movement and filling out the canvas. While Hel Covell has very simple, almost childish and imperfect lines, simple block colors and usually not filling out the canvas but having a background colour. To me, the expression of the lines of theese two artists was the most important thing for both of them, and since they are sooo different, how can I combine them? Do you have any tips?

  125. Can’t agree more with your method. Essentially I’m drawn to semi-realistic. I love JC Leyendecker(shopping lady), Sachin Teng(tv in the head), and Awanqi(angel). I would love to get opinions on JC Leyendecker and Sachin Teng because I find them similar, but different enough that I like them for different reasons. But, I can’t find out particularly why. My issue is more with the way they render and color their subjects rather than what subject matter they choose to draw.

    With Awanqi I love how harmonious the background and foreground is, but the artist hardly uses enough darker tones, so nothing has true depth as I see in JC’s work. I think Sachin’s has depth and style, but it’s just not how I would render it? I don’t know why though. I think JC is the most ideal in the type of art I want to achieve. But I don’t know why Sachin’s work doesn’t speak out to me as much, even though it has a similar rendering style (line work, highlights, realistic proportions, understanding of forms)? What do you think?

  126. Hello,I am an 11 year old who started drawing at the age of 7 i can’t seem to do this art style even though i try,I don’t if your familiar with his video game skullgirls but i cant seem to do this art style can i have any type of tips to help me?

  127. Would you please help my find my style. Like others, i am stuck on step 4. The three styles i really like are mainly hiper realism of both graphite and Acrylic/oil paintings. The other type is combine ink and watercolour and the 3rd type i like is pen and ink drawings of landscape. How can i merge them into a unique style? Thanks

  128. Style 2 that i like is

  129. Style 3 that i like is ink and water colour of different subjects.

  130. sorry i forgot to attach a sample

  131. Thank you so much for this! It took me some time to do step 4 but the results are amazing ! I’m so happy with my new art style ^u^!

  132. Im having trouble finding my style ,i followed the steps but it was difficult for me so i was wondering if i needed improvements in my art.

  133. Oh, man. It was the best and the most useful article that I’ve read about Find Art Style. The way you say the steps and how to do them was so simple and understandable that anyone can do it.

  134. Thanks so much for this! It was truly helpful and inspiring.

  135. Thank you for this article! I’m a design graduate and have yet to pinpoint my style. Can’t wait to give this a shot.

  136. I was smiling the whole time❤❤ this is the article I’ve been looking for… I will start doing tgis steps tomorrow and hopefully I succeed finding my own style… I’ve been having hard time finding my own this past few days.. I can’t think something unique and draw without others works… but thanks to you❤??

  137. I am an abstract watercolorist and I have a signature style but have been trying to develop it further to include other elements within my paintings. This exercise has been so beneficial to me!

  138. Hi Josh I’m having a lil trouble so any way there’s three art pieces I found a the two are resembled in a more anime type and the third is resembled in a more cartoony style.

  139. Hi! This is a great article. I just wanted to know if you think my style is any good. I did the six-fan art challenge, and my friends say its really good. However, I’m not sure, and wanted an opinion from someone I don’t really know. I’m 12, almost 13, and have just been getting into copic marker art. I also dabble in realistic drawings, so I’ll reply to this comment with a picture if it doesn’t attach.

  140. eveline thomer
    le gang des reves telerama
    maryse massiera grimaldi
    telematin librairie
    katia berger
    librairie pave du canal

  141. lamess ahmed sayed

    I think this article is really helpful so thank you so much, I just have a question. I’m kinda a beginner artist and I only recently figured out that I want to have an anime style and switch from traditional to digital. now I’m trying to improve my anime character art first and then switch to digital, should I start trying to find my own style at this moment from the beginning or should I wait till I developed my skills more traditionally or even wait when I start digital art and even get used to it and then try to fund my style.
    at this moment I can copy an anime character but I only tried once, so should keep coping different anime characters till my skills become better and then think about my own style. this is my first ever anime character drawing and I don’t know if this is a good start or not.

  142. Ok, so- I have my favorites all ready. I just need a little bit of help combining them.
    The artist(s) in charge of the comic adaptation of the story Sooner or Later Your Gonna Be Mine (the original writer is StaringBack)
    One thing I love about all of them is the way they draw heads and expressions (I have an odd obsession with the way artists draw heads). You may also notice that they all do or have drawn Undertale art. I love Undertale and it’s Aus, I just can’t help it.

    For Poetax: I love the way they draw expressions and faces. It’s just so unique. You can immediately tell a character’s emotion (and sometimes what they’re thinking) just by looking at their face. I also really like the way they shade! It’s simple but extremely effective.

    For ImALazyCat: The clothing. It all represents the characters personalities while still referencing the original designs. I would love to be able to have a variety of clothing they give their characters. And the way they draw the clothing- I would love to have that in my art style. I also like the way they do glowing and translucent effects.

    For The artist(s) in charge of the comic adaptation of the story Sooner or Later You’re Gonna Be Mine: HOLY ASGORE- THIS COMIC IS AMAZING! I absolutely love this comic and the original writing! It’s mostly black in white, with a bit of red. I love the lineart and the way the artist(s) set it up! I love the smoke effect! I just love the entire thing! And the comic dub by Vade just makes it even better!

    I just need some help combining these into a unique art style. Your help would be very much appreciated!

  143. I have been looking for a drawing stylefrom anime to animation to comics but my problem is my damn hands aren’t still.

  144. Hello, and thank you for the amazing atricle! I stumbled upon it by accident, but was definitely not dissapointed when reading. I am a younger artist and actually needed this a lot, so thank you! I followed the steps and and quite happy with the result. My three artists were TenneleFlowers, Silverzoul and Gray Pillow.

  145. soooooo… im 10 and I tried drawing this, and I’m pleasantly surprised

  146. Thank you so much for making this post 🙂 I found my art style recently and I’m very happy with it! Here is one of my drawings:

    Again, Tysm!

  147. What if all you need to do is STOP looking at other people’s styles? Play with the limits of your own mind. Then you’ll get something truly original.

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