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How To Draw Your Own Style by ImagineTheEnding How To Draw Your Own Style by ImagineTheEnding
Okay so this going to be a text tutorial but since I can't have a large preview, this tutorial will be in the description of this piece. I hope that's okay with you guys =).

At first I was going to submit this for shits and giggles. I wanted to post a picture of the progress of Doodle and how much the eye style changed over a period of time. Than I began thinking, and decided to share an idea that I gave Michelle in order to help people with their independent art styles.

This Tutorial is for three types of people: people who have no idea how to start a new style, people who find something wrong with their original style, or people who want to improve quickly. I use this technique during break periods and it helps me improve quiet a bit.

I guess first I'd like to briefly talk about my style along with what I have submitted as a preview. I'm not going to lie to you guys; making your own style extremely hard. It took me a year to get to where I am, and that's apparently not that long. Which means, if you want to start changing styles then it may take longer. It is worth it though, trust me. If you want to draw a comic book or just want to kind of stick out of the crowd, then having your own style is great. Plus you don't feel like you are in a category. The hardest part for me and my style was the eyes. I drew anime for a long time before I drew the style I have now. Anime's eyes aren't very hard to draw. They're pupils are always in one place and eyebrows aren't very important. This is not the case for my style. Emotion was one of my weaknesses when starting off. Whenever someone tells me that I draw emotions well in the newest version of BIS, I am extremely thankful. Even now I have problems with it, but it's not as obvious. You can see the emotion change in the picture I submitted.

Now how to start your style...

First you have to have an idea of what you want to draw. Now, when I say this I don't mean you sit there in your room and think of a style on the spot. Most people can't do that. Instead picture a style you like a lot. Let's say you look at :iconflipsidered:'s stuff and you love it. You like the very cartoonish feel of her work, and would like your characters to look like that. Now I don't mean copy. This idea of yours is just a base for your style. Why? Because it's often very hard for people to see the style the want. They only have a vague idea, so looking at another style helps the mind create a cut out. It's kind of like if I set you in a room and told you to make a original cake with absolutely no recipes or help. You'd be confused, yes? However, if you used a recipe that wasn't yours first, you may be able to make your very own awesome super chocolate cake.

If your still confused, I used Jhonen Vasquez's style as a base when I did Doodle Comix. DC was supposed to be a mini comic for just me and my friends, so I didn't care if it looked like JCV's style or not. It wasn't until I got attached to Doodle that I thought I should change the style. That's when the adventure started.
(Warning: If you use JCV's style as a base you may have problems. People totally love JCV, so once you draw his style a thousand fans will follow you. Now this isn't bad, but it may effect you, and your style. Be careful.)

Alright, so once you have a vague idea of what you want, pick one of your characters. When you do, draw that character. This character, when you first draw it, will look nothing like how you want it to, hopefully. I say hopefully because if it does look like the character that might mean you are too close to your base style. Keep drawing your character until you're used to it. Practice makes perfect.

KEY INGREDIENT:

Everyone has their own style. Their style is not anime, it is not Disney, it is not Tim Burton, or anything else. Your style is yours. It is your personality and what you have drawn in ever since you were a little person. However, 90% of people don't know what their style is. I am going to give you an idea that I told my sister in order to figure it out. This idea helps out people with any sort of problem, but mainly for people who are trying to get used to their style.

In order to see your own style you have to stretch it. Stretching it will be able to make it more obvious of what features your style has. For example my characters have large hands, wide chests and thin arms.

How to stretch your style:

Alright so you have been drawing your character and he is starting to look real nice. However he just isn't right. He kind of looks like wonky Doodle during 2007. So, this is what you do in order to help yourself understand your style.

The idea came forth in my mind when Michelle was complaining about her style a few months ago. She expressed that she couldn't draw her characters right, and if she did ,they didn't express the emotion she wanted. The problem with her was that she was not drawing the character enough. When you don't draw your character enough then your mind won't memorize how to draw him/her. Drawing your character ,no matter how ugly, helps the mind improve. However, Michelle was getting no where. She was drawing him in the style, but he always looked worse which frustrated her.

So this is what I did. I told her to make mini comics of her characters. They were just small one page comic book strips so that she could see the character move about. Here's the catch though, each page had to be a different style. First she would have to start with the style she felt most comfortable with, and then as pages went on the more extreme the styles got. Each style would have to start looking completely different from one another. If you do this idea you can pick what ever want, but it has to be in different genres. If you do anise you can't pick different anime styles. It just doesn't work.

The styles I gave her:

Chibi
Invader Zim
JTHM
My style
Disney
Anime
Western Comics
Her style


When you draw a style for the pages, it has to look exactly like the style. This does a lot for the brain. It forces it to get out of it's comfort zone and draw something it's not used to. For instance if I drew Doodle as a Disney character, I would have to force my mind to come up with an eye style that fits. Then I would have to get the emotion right. With the brain feeling uncomfortable, you are allowing it to improve, and not be on a constant motion. When the mind is in a constant motion, it starts to get too comfortable, and will start to restrict the character.

You guys have seen me doing this but not in comic pages. For instance, I have drawn several fan art such as :iconendling:'s work, :iconbleedman:'s work, JTHM in a different style, Disney, Anime, etc. I had to stretch my style constantly, but if you do the mini comics, it may shorten the time period that you take drawing.

Like I said practice makes perfect. After a while your mind will automatically start going to your very own style. It just takes a long time to do. If you or any of your friends are having a problem, tell them my idea. =)

Anyway I hope this helped some people. I know that making my style was frustrating, so I wanted to help other people.

Preview from my comic at :iconmind-tricks:

EDIT: OH MY GOD THANKS FOR DD!
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Daily Deviation

Given 2008-04-28
How To Draw Your Own Style by ~ImagineTheEnding offers some excellent tips if you are looking to create and improve your own distinctive style in comic Characters. ( Featured by znow-white )
:iconparaxellate:
ParaXellate Featured By Owner Edited Mar 26, 2015  Hobbyist Artist
Hi, i was searching tutorials and stumbled onto yours. i found it really helpfull and was wondering if i can use this in a group i recently created?.
its here and still under construction--->
:iconhelp-with-yourcomics:
Help-With-YourComics Helping your comics grow!
Reply
:iconinkpawstudio777:
InkPawStudio777 Featured By Owner Jan 5, 2015  Hobbyist General Artist
thanks :3
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:iconzarras:
Zarras Featured By Owner Aug 6, 2014  Hobbyist General Artist
Thanks this helps a lot!
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:iconhamichiru:
hamichiru Featured By Owner May 11, 2014
Your newer style in 2008 kinda reminds me of Fairy Tail and Fullmetal Alchemist. 
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:icond-awesome:
d-awesome Featured By Owner Jan 27, 2014  Hobbyist Filmographer
Can I use the style you used jan 2008?
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:iconimaginetheending:
ImagineTheEnding Featured By Owner Jan 27, 2014  Student Digital Artist
You can try it out, but I dunno if you want to directly take it. It's easier just to figure yourself out and come up with something new.
Reply
:icond-awesome:
d-awesome Featured By Owner Jan 27, 2014  Hobbyist Filmographer
Should I give you credit?
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:iconimaginetheending:
ImagineTheEnding Featured By Owner Jan 27, 2014  Student Digital Artist
Sure. I'd like that. :)
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:icond-awesome:
d-awesome Featured By Owner Jan 27, 2014  Hobbyist Filmographer
I mean mar 31st 2007
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:iconsapiio:
Sapiio Featured By Owner Jan 18, 2014
Thank you so much ; o ;


Its time to start my style journey!! This is just what I needed!! God bless you!!
Reply
:iconpiblaf:
Piblaf Featured By Owner Dec 30, 2013
This REALLY helped me! Oh my goodness thank you for making this! This is like EXACTLY what I needed to get control of my goshdang hands whenever I decide to draw! XD
Reply
:iconapplemintarts:
ApplemintArts Featured By Owner Oct 12, 2013  Student Artist
For me, when I just doodle, I like my facial expressions and body styles (even though I don't scale them. But sometimes.) But I can't figure out the face shape. When I try my faces in other styles, it just looks like the styles from comics i read or just anime style. Same with the eyes... Well I kinda figure how they would be like so the problem for me is the face shapes I draw. 

Plus, I'm having a artist's block because I see some people around me drawing so cleanly and scaled, but I can't seem to draw them right even though I try to scale them. Maybe I should change my style completely differently. Can you help me?
Reply
:iconimaginetheending:
ImagineTheEnding Featured By Owner Oct 12, 2013  Student Digital Artist
Artists naturally go into art blocks, so you're not alone there. For things like face shapes or anatomy, it's best to take life drawing classes. That generally helps with the figure. 

Art is a long process, so don't feel bad if you think other people draw neater then you. Just keep practicing and sooner or later you'll figure out a technique that works for you. 
Reply
:iconapplemintarts:
ApplemintArts Featured By Owner Oct 12, 2013  Student Artist
Hmmm ok thx
I saw people with their own cool styles and other styles I didn't know about, so maybe I should practice drawing like them and fuse it with my style so it could improve :)
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:iconimaginetheending:
ImagineTheEnding Featured By Owner Oct 12, 2013  Student Digital Artist
Yeah I find that drawing a lot of different things helps a lot too. So maybe drawing a whole bunch of styles would be inspiring. 
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:iconapplemintarts:
ApplemintArts Featured By Owner Oct 14, 2013  Student Artist
Ok, thx alot!
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:iconinfernus057:
Infernus057 Featured By Owner Jul 10, 2013
Thank you so much! This really helps me to get things sorted out! I don't know how to express my gratitude! :w00t:

Thank you so much! :glomp:
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:iconalice1236:
Alice1236 Featured By Owner Jun 26, 2013  Student General Artist
Oh, my god...Thank u so much! SO MUCH! It'll realy help me.
Reply
:iconraisinginsanity:
RaisingInsanity Featured By Owner May 9, 2013  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
I came to check on this tutorial to get more tips for finding my style, which is now getting past the beginner state. This brought a question of a kind into my mind, and I would highly appreciate if you could help me out with it. Even a bit of advice is very welcome.

So, basically I'm getting more interested in finding my style. The problem is, I am not sure of how to decide which way I should proceed with it. Realism, or cartoonish. The main problem is this: I want a more cartoonish style than realism, but I can't let myself into it. As I try to form my own style I am afraid it would look too much like something else.
So, years ago I started with manga, moved to drawing dogs for a few years forward. From this I moved to furries and realism of a kind with humans. As I discovered JCV, I wanted to try his style and so I did try my best to get into it. A few months forward I tried to learn how to draw realistic faces, but it was a total pain in the arse ever until the end. Around the end of last summer I got back into the more cartoonish style, but had already forgotten my old, JTHM-like style I used before the summer. Around the near end of last year I got some of it back, but that is when I started seriously searching for my own style. I in a way know what I want, but it is confusing to me even then.
As we are past the long ''story'' of my so called artist years, back to the problem of mine. I want to make my style unique enough for no one to confuse it easily to another style, but at the same time I want it cartoonish. This is a problem on it's own, since I do not want it to get confused for manga and anime. I simply don't like the genre of manga as my own, so I would like to stay away from it. This, however, is difficult for me as manga and cartoonish tend to get confused to each other in some cases for how they can sometimes use the same elements. With me it is the shape of the head and the size of the eyes, which both have aimed a little to JCV's style. I don't mind it so much, but when it is mixed with all the other elements in my mind some people tend to call it manga, which I am not happy about as I am aiming away from the genre of it.
I would like to know, is there any solution for this, to how I could go for it bravely without all the time panicking over it being possible for getting called manga?

There is also a side question related to this. I tend to like to see my characters in some kind of realism, but if I move to realism even for a little while I forgot the more cartoonish style that feels more like me. sometimes I can be two days or a few more without drawing and I end up forgetting the styles completely in that time. Any advice for this as well, since it is highly irritating at times to literally need to draw every day to keep the style in my memory?
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:iconimaginetheending:
ImagineTheEnding Featured By Owner May 10, 2013  Student Digital Artist
My advice is that it's important to remember that art is a process. You will draw a lot of things you like, don't like, and in between. It may take years to draw art you are comfortable with, but that's a part of the gig. If you forget a style, that's okay. Just reassure your self that it is okay and draw with your gut. Draw what you want and what feels right at the time. It doesn't matter if you draw manga, realism or cartoony stuff. Just be happy and realize that it takes time. It takes a lot of patience being an artist and dealing with the struggles.

Personally I just drew drew drew until I got to a point I liked. Sometimes I draw realism and sometimes I don't. Half my gallery is very real like. The other half is comic book style. So it all depends on the day and what I feel like doing.

Art is a journey if that makes sense. You'll figure it out sooner or later. And that's not a bad thing.
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:iconbutterfinger211:
Butterfinger211 Featured By Owner Apr 10, 2013
I KNEW I spotted JTHM when I first looked at the picture.
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:iconsatoshi-ue:
Satoshi-Ue Featured By Owner Mar 11, 2013  Student Digital Artist
I'm having a tough time trying to establish a style I like. I'm trying to create my own personal style (cartoon) while still trying to teach myself to draw realistically. Somehow I keep finding myself somewhere in the middle (semi-realistic). Should I focus solely on one art style and then once I master that, move on to the other or should I focus on both at the same time?
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:iconimaginetheending:
ImagineTheEnding Featured By Owner Mar 11, 2013  Student Digital Artist
I wrote this tutorial a long time ago before I went to art college. After I graduated, I realized that it was easier to focus on not style, but improving over all. Like I have suggested to many people, I would just practice and practice a lot. Draw things from life. Go to figure drawing classes. Carry a sketch book around with you and draw what you see. I find that drawing that way helps you figure out what you want to do without being dedicated to a "look". Then when the time comes you can choose whatever style you want to draw in, and then try and master it that way.

But I, personally, would just play it by ear. When you approach a drawing, draw what you feel like works best with the piece. You may struggle with it or it may not turn out the way you want, but the more you draw the better you will get.

I hope that helps/ :)
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:iconsatoshi-ue:
Satoshi-Ue Featured By Owner Mar 11, 2013  Student Digital Artist
Hmmm..okay. Thanks for the advice.
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:iconimaginetheending:
ImagineTheEnding Featured By Owner Mar 11, 2013  Student Digital Artist
You're welcome! :D
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:iconsonic-techn9ne123:
Sonic-Techn9ne123 Featured By Owner Mar 1, 2013
I need help drawing hands please D:>really need help with drawing h
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:iconimaginetheending:
ImagineTheEnding Featured By Owner Mar 1, 2013  Student Digital Artist
Oh lord. Metoo. I can't really help you there. Hahaha!
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:iconsonic-techn9ne123:
Sonic-Techn9ne123 Featured By Owner Mar 1, 2013
Lol I'm sorry my tablet is being stupid hands are super hard for me :c
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:iconimaginetheending:
ImagineTheEnding Featured By Owner Mar 1, 2013  Student Digital Artist
I totally understand. Hands are ridiculous. The only thing I can recommend is using reference. Otherwise--I have no idea. I feel your pain.
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:iconsonic-techn9ne123:
Sonic-Techn9ne123 Featured By Owner Mar 1, 2013
Ok :) thanks so much for he advice I really appreciate it :D
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:iconpvtdextergrif:
PvtDexterGrif Featured By Owner Dec 30, 2012  Hobbyist Writer
I've done this over and over, but I have this problem where I absolutely need to draw the head realistically, and I can't seem to get over it.
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:iconimaginetheending:
ImagineTheEnding Featured By Owner Dec 30, 2012  Student Digital Artist
Then draw the heads realistically. If that's what you keep going towards, then go with it. Just keep drawing and practicing, and sooner or later your art will look the way you want it to look.

If you really want to draw cartoony, draw with big shapes like circles, squares, and so forth. Try not to drift away from that. If your strict about this rule, then you won't fall back onto realism.
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:iconpvtdextergrif:
PvtDexterGrif Featured By Owner Dec 30, 2012  Hobbyist Writer
Thanks! I'll try again! ^^
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:iconimaginetheending:
ImagineTheEnding Featured By Owner Dec 30, 2012  Student Digital Artist
You're welcome! Good luck.
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:icondysfunctional-h0rr0r:
Dysfunctional-H0rr0r Featured By Owner Nov 15, 2012  Student General Artist
I myself have been trying to find my style for a while now and lately i've been getting so frustrated trying that i'd give up half way of the process. I was wondering if you could help me out?
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:iconimaginetheending:
ImagineTheEnding Featured By Owner Nov 15, 2012  Student Digital Artist
Just keep drawing and have fun. Finding your own style is a life long process. Sometimes it takes years, and it's good to remind yourself it's okay. Draw everything around you. Draw people, dogs, cats, buildings--everything. The more knowledge you gain, the more you learn about yourself.

One day your art will look the way you want. Just have to stick with it and have patience. :)
Reply
:icondysfunctional-h0rr0r:
Dysfunctional-H0rr0r Featured By Owner Nov 15, 2012  Student General Artist
Thank you.

It's just really hard because i'm so used to making every thing look different each time i try.
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:iconimaginetheending:
ImagineTheEnding Featured By Owner Nov 15, 2012  Student Digital Artist
It is hard. I understand. Art can be very very frustrating, but it does pay off at some point. The challenges may feel defeating now, but you'll be constantly learning. As long as you have confidence in yourself, you'll get the style you want. It may just take some time.

And you're welcome.
Reply
:icondysfunctional-h0rr0r:
Dysfunctional-H0rr0r Featured By Owner Nov 15, 2012  Student General Artist
Hopefully i can perfect that style i'm just begging for. I have been trying to look up some different ref's to help build it.
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:iconelorium:
Elorium Featured By Owner Oct 11, 2012
Very good advice. Although, if for the mini comics, how do you know it's YOUR style that your drawing in? Because above it states: "Everyone has their own style. Their style is not anime, it is not Disney, it is not Tim Burton, or anything else. Your style is yours. It is your personality and what you have drawn in ever since you were a little person. However, 90% of people don't know what their style is." So, my question in more clarity is, how can you draw in your style if you don't know what it is?
Or was this just advice for your friend?
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:iconimaginetheending:
ImagineTheEnding Featured By Owner Oct 11, 2012  Student Digital Artist
It's about finding yourself and your style. Over time, you will automatically find a way that you like and stick with it. A style isn't something that happens over a sudden. It's not about "looking" for a style, but more so practicing and just improving your skills.
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:iconelorium:
Elorium Featured By Owner Oct 12, 2012
I see, thank you.
Reply
:iconfuturemangakaspectra:
FutureMangaKaSpectra Featured By Owner Oct 4, 2012  Hobbyist Filmographer
Im style a bit confused because my art style resembles tite kubo but I think Ive discovered just don't know how to perfect it and show emotions plz gimme some tips
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:iconimaginetheending:
ImagineTheEnding Featured By Owner Oct 4, 2012  Student Digital Artist
What I recommend is taking life drawing classes, and using reference for emotions. What I do is, often I'll make the expression myself and use that as guidance on drawing emotion. So if the character is angry, I make an angry face to see how it works.

There are several books of photographs of people making emotions too. I can't remember what they are called. I think that you can probably google "actors emotion book" and find something.

With "style", often it's something developed over time. Just draw and learn from everything. Sooner or later you'll find yourself. It's not something that you force but allow to happen.
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:iconfuturemangakaspectra:
FutureMangaKaSpectra Featured By Owner Oct 11, 2012  Hobbyist Filmographer
Thanks Imma ask my mom for those classes and books XD
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:iconxsilverflowerx:
xSilverflowerx Featured By Owner Sep 30, 2012
Thank you SO much for this!! :iconoverlyjoyedplz:
This was exactly what I needed ;u; I've always felt disheartened about "finding-my-own-and-unique-style" and this helps so much!! Thanks again \>u</
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:iconpiratevamp:
piratevamp Featured By Owner Sep 25, 2012  Hobbyist General Artist
Thank you so much for this!!!!! I've only recently have been wanting to veer away from the anime style and make my characters look more unique/express emotion better, and this really helped me out. Thank you for the good advice! :D
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:iconimaginetheending:
ImagineTheEnding Featured By Owner Sep 25, 2012  Student Digital Artist
No prob! Don't forget to also take figure drawing classes. That helped me a lot.
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:iconlydiara:
Lydiara Featured By Owner Sep 24, 2012
Thanks sooo much for this!
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:iconboobookittybone:
boobookittybone Featured By Owner Sep 7, 2012  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
Thanks so much. I've been searching for a "style" to do comics on, and it looks like what I need to do is practice, practice, practice! But your article and advice just just saved me from a lot of frustration, used up erasers, and little pencil nubs. Thank you!
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