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11:02 AM, Sunday April 18th 2021
edited at 11:18 AM, Apr 18th 2021

I too have the same problem

I have a very wild visual imagination but it's only when I'm about to sleep on my bed

but when I want to draw

& I have my pen on paper all I see is just blank

I still don't have a solution

but I have some methods I'm trying to use to fix this

  1. Just scribbling in lines & shapes until something happens (either I'll see what I'm looking for or something completely new to draw) this is called practicing pareidolia

  2. I try (when I have the clear image in my head) to draw it without any pen or paper all completely inside my head

by breaking it into lines & shapes turning it in 3D space & basically doing a study of that thing inside my head & trying to draw it line by line inside my head

so when I actually have a paper in front of me all I have to do is repeat what I just did in my head having a better idea where to start & what to do

  1. maybe I don't have a solid idea of what I want to draw is so I just use reference images of whatever resembles what I already wanted to draw

just to aid the process

  1. I look at more images of what I want to draw whatever that might be

doing purely visual studies (no pen no paper just my eyes & a hand drawing on air) to enhance the vividness of my visual library

  1. maybe you just forget the thing you're trying to draw

like when you enter a room & forget why you entered the room in the first place

a method to refresh your and try to remember is to repeat what you just did from before you got the idea

example: I was doing (x) then I got up to do (x)

walking by (x) and getting distracted by (x) for an embarrassing 2 minutes

at which point I unlocked my phone & opened (x) app and that's when I saw (x) which reminded me of (x) and that gave me the idea to draw (x)...

and you get the idea.

  1. one last method is to just start drawing

it doesn't matter how or where just start

it might come back to you, it might not, it might look bad in the end or not.

if it looks bad then redraw it again having your visual aid & experience of the first.

hope I helped in some way or another

edited at 11:18 AM, Apr 18th 2021
2:19 AM, Thursday April 22nd 2021

This is interesting, thanks. The "just scribble until something happens" is typically what I end up doing and nets me a whole lot of frustration and not a lot of progress.

I have found (weirdly) that if I listen to music while drawing (certain music evokes very strong visual imagery for me when I am not drawing), I can "hold on" to the image just a little bit longer before it slips away (sort of like holding on to cupped water running between your fingers) and can very quickly get down the major shapes etc before it falls apart entirely. As long as I can get enough down on the paper in time, then I can just use the image on the paper to "revive" the image I had before to an extent since I am looking at it.

I'll have to try some of what you suggested. Looking at other images of the thing I want to draw actually makes it worse sometimes, because the thing I am looking at completely erases my own version that I had in my head before. I am generally speaking about things that are already in my visual library -- I can still certainly draw a generic version of that thing without a visual aid since it's in my library, but any kind of unique variation that I had previously envisioned just sorta dies.

Best of luck to you as well.

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The Science of Deciding What You Should Draw

The Science of Deciding What You Should Draw

Right from when students hit the 50% rule early on in Lesson 0, they ask the same question - "What am I supposed to draw?"

It's not magic. We're made to think that when someone just whips off interesting things to draw, that they're gifted in a way that we are not. The problem isn't that we don't have ideas - it's that the ideas we have are so vague, they feel like nothing at all. In this course, we're going to look at how we can explore, pursue, and develop those fuzzy notions into something more concrete.

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