Today I am going to share with you how I started drawing my art on the computer. As you may have guessed, I am completely self-taught.
Some years ago I found myself the owner of Adobe’s Photoshop Elements, which came free with a digital camera. This program is the “baby” version of the expensive Photoshop, at about 1/10 the price. It is easier to learn than Photoshop, which is the program I use now.
I wasn’t getting very far in drawing on the computer until I bought a book called Art and Cartoons in Photoshop Elements 3 by Christopher Madden. The new edition of this book (for the latest version of Photoshop Elements) is Photoshop Elements 8 for Digital Art, Illustration & Cartoons, pictured above.
Written in language that is easy to understand, the book will take you step by step into the world of drawing on the computer.
Many of the available books for Photoshop Elements are really for photographers, and most of the chapters are tutorials on how to retouch photographs. This book, however, is for beginners who want to know how to draw cartoons and clip art on the computer.
It starts very simply and in a few hours you will learn how to draw on the computer. You will learn how to make your own brushes of music symbols, such as treble clefs and quarter notes. Later chapters expand on this basic knowledge in more detail.
Save your drawings in layers and over time as your skills improve, you can refine them and use them repeatedly. You can paste your images on music you have written for your students in Finale, draw clip art for your worksheets, or import music into Elements and color it.
It is hard to draw with a mouse, but not impossible. If you find that drawing on the computer is something you really like, you might want to invest in a computer drawing tablet. Even this small, affordable drawing tablet ($69) will be easier than a mouse. Wacom, the leader in digital tablets, also makes more expensive models for serious graphic artists.
If you like to draw but have never tried drawing on the computer, you will be amazed at what you can create digitally and have fun, too!