Drawing Cartoon

There are no written rules to say how you should or should not draw cartoons. Of course there are tips and techniques you can follow to achieve a particular cartoon effect or style, but to be an original cartoonist you also have to be original in the application of these techniques.

And anyway – rules are there to be broken… even totally ignored.

If you are aiming to be an illustrator of existing comics, or an animation artist, you'll probably be expected to draw many styles, and the standard techniques – building your characters from circles for example – will be part of that expectancy. But for the rest of you wanting to create your own cartoon-strips, comic characters and cartoon illustrations, you'll only be stifling your creative ability by confining yourself to all the familiar "How-to Draw-Cartoons" techniques – and you'll begin to believe that there is only one way to draw cartoons.

And that's true – if you want to draw cartoons like everyone else.

To be original though, you have to turn to your own uniqueness – your own observations, own sketches, own caricaturing. Draw what you like, how you like, what you can and how you can. Let your hand, eye, vision, ability, passion, humour and imagination be your teacher.

By all means study the work of other cartoonists. Practise their ways of drawing eyes, ears, noses or whatever, but diversify your inspiration-sources, and mix together everything you pick up.

And, like all successful cartoon artists, be daring enough to develop your own style – be yourself, be undeterred by what others tell you is the right or wrong way to draw cartoons, and find your own voice.

Only then will your uniqueness and originality show through in your work, and help you to create your own audience, your own legion of fans.

The cartoon world is vast, and in this age of digital-creation and technical manipulation, new styles of cartooning are developing all the time. Many modern cartoons are pushing back the borders of how a cartoon should look, ever farther away… and the old styles, and drawing techniques, just don't apply anymore.

Be inspired by these new developments and the changing tastes of cartoon consumers – be ambitious and adventurous in your drawing – but especially be wise enough to understand that you are free to be original. No-one can tell you how you should draw cartoons.