The "How to Draw" Series, Part Nine: Three Little Tricks

Here are three fast tricks that will make your drawings even more dynamic than they already are!
1. Darkening Contours

When two contour lines meet up, it's often a good idea to darken the line of the object that is in front of another object.  Here's an example:

In my drawing, the ear of the deer is in front of her antlers, so I darkened the line of her ear where the two meet (see the arrow).  I hope this makes sense!  It's a great little drawing trick.

2. Line Variation

Changing up the thicknesses of your lines is a great way to make a drawing look more interesting.  With this drawing, I drew it all with the same line thickness at first, then I added a few thicker areas, such as how the line widens where her armpit starts of underneath her breast:

3. Cross Hatching

The best way to do cross hatching and make it look the most realistic is to draw your lines in such a way that you are creating diamonds instead of boxes.  Here's what I mean:

I hope you had fun with these little tips!  They are small things, but I think they pack a big punch!

What are some tricks you use when you are drawing?  Do you think you will try any of the ones above?

Leave a comment below!

This post is part of the “How to Draw” Series, a free E-Course I offer on my blog with new lessons every Friday.  I create these totally free of charge in order to help get people making art and enjoying their creativity.  If you like these lessons, please leave a comment below or help me grow my audience by clicking the orange Stumble Upon icon below.   

Thanks so much for joining me!


  1. I love drawing and spent my entire college years in the studio (and I was an English major- oops). I like your little tips, and love your drawing style. Keep it up!

  2. So glad to know that you love drawing too!! Thank you for your kind words about my drawings. :)

  3. I see! These are great tips - I've been experimenting with the varying the line thickness just a little (ok, I've used that trick twice, and been totally pleased with the result) but I wouldn't have thought of the other ones. Keep up the great work! I do intend to try all of these on my next drawing.

  4. Great! I'm so glad these tips were helpful. I can't wait to see what you will draw!! :)


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