Week six

SKILL BUILDING: Drawing from Memory

A question I see come up a lot in the community of learning artists is, “When did you feel you were ‘good enough’ to only draw from imagination?” The question is always posed as if it’s aspirational never to have to look at anything when you draw. I already talked a bit about this in my Week 2 email, but using references when you draw is highly beneficial, and artists of ALL skill levels use references. NEVER feel guilty about using references!

However, knowing how to draw something without looking at a photo of the thing IS a skill that can be learned. To do this, you need to observe the thing and then practice drawing the thing – A LOT. That’s is what we’ll be focusing on this week!

February's Theme:


Week 6: Intro to Animals

This week is all about teaching yourself how to draw something from memory. The idea here is to study an animal, identify its unique characteristics, break it down into simple shapes, then develop your own method for drawing that animal. It’s a process that can take time, so I’ve split each prompt across two days.

Here’s how it works:

First, learn about breaking down a subject into simple shapes and making sketches by watching the two tutorials I’ve linked below the prompts.

1. On “sketches” day, follow the tutorial steps to create a framework of how to draw that animal. Create a page of sketches of the animal.

2. On “final art” day, sketch the animal from memory if you can. You can look at a reference photo if needed, but try not to trace. The idea is to use the framework you created to draw the basic form. Finish your artwork with color however you’d like! Look to your reference photos for ideas about how to depict the details.

If you practice doing the above steps enough times, you’ll be able to start visualizing the basic shapes in your head, and you’ll be able to draw anything you see! It takes practice to teach your brain to see this way, but it’s essential to improving your drawing skills.

For this week, each of the animals I’ve chosen has a unique body shape from the others to allow you to try something new each time.
Since there is an odd number of days in a week, Sunday’s prompt consists of both sketches and final art based on what you’ve learned. Or you can skip it and keep working on one of the previous prompts.

One more thing:

I don’t expect that you’ll learn how to draw these animals from memory in one day. This is all about learning the process. 😊

The Prompts

Week 6 | Feb 2-7

intro to animals

Mon: : bear – sketches
Tue: bear – final art
Wed: bird – sketches
Thu: bird – final art
Fri: zebra – sketches
Sat: zebra – final art
Sun: alligator – sketches & final art

This piece was drawn using brushes from my Awesome Alcohol Markers for Procreate.

You can access each week’s prompts, with links to reference photos, at makingarteveryday.com

This Week's Tutorial

Live Tutorial! DATE at TIME PST


The best place to catch the live stream is on the Bardot Brush YouTube Channel. Don’t forget: You can watch or re-watch the previous livestreams on my tutorials page on Bardot Brush!

Learn how to study a subject matter, identify it’s unique characteristics, break it down into simple shapes, and develop your own method for drawing that subject. These are the first steps in the process of stylizing an illustration. For our example, you’ll be learning a method for drawing a bear! If you struggle with how to begin a drawing, this will be a great video for you.

Don’t know where to begin when drawing our feathered friends? In this Procreate tutorial, you’ll learn the basic form and structure of drawing birds by making a series of sketches from reference photos. Drawing upon techniques learned in my Foundations of Style Procreate tutorial, learn all about how to simplify the bird form into simple shapes and develop the perfect sketch for creating some birdie art. You are going to fowl in love with drawing birds!

This Month's Progress Tracker

You can always download the current month’s Progress Tracker at bardotbrush.com/progress

(its a .Procreate file, so you can keep track of your progress right in Procreate!)

You’ll find instructions about how to use the Tracker at the link above. I even made you a star stamp brush for you to use! It’s my Procreate version of a gold star sticker.

Share and Connect with other MAE Artists

We’ve got a Facebook group just for participants of Making Art Everyday and all things Bardot Brush! Come join our group of supportive artists of all skill levels, share your work, ask questions, and be a part of the community!

Making Art Everyday is brought to you by me, Lisa Bardot!

I’m the owner of Bardot Brush, one of the leading brush makers for Procreate. If you’d like to support me, please check out my premium brush sets that inspire creativity at bardotbrush.com.