Emperor Moloch

Art Everything

Not much here yet, just gathering my thoughts whenever I remember something fresh.

Table of contents

  1. Drawing as a Process
  2. Learning Art
  3. 2D Sketching

Drawing as a Process

So there’s definitely a kind of shift that happens when you start sketching. I suspect it’s like blood flowing to the “right hemisphere”. The left/right brain thing popularized by Betty Edwards is probably not very scientifically accurate but changing your brains’ “mode of operation” when you draw definitely feels like a thing. It can be taught, for sure. I also suspect the “flexibility” of this process can be very different between artists (and again: can be practiced). For me personally I always felt a lot of inertia with this process. It takes me a looong time to get going (20+ minutes) so once I’m there I want to milk it as much as I can (and it gets hard to slow down…which has another set of disadvantages). It used to cause me a lot of anxiety, when I would panic “I CANNOT DRAW” for the first 20 minutes. And a lot of grief where I would be hungry, tired and ineffective but refuse to “let go” of this state. (It sounds kind of ADHD-ish…but I never felt like ADHD was something I struggle with).

I really don’t have any better or more precise terms so I’ll stick with “left brain / right brain”

Learning art - the aspects

  • Purely mechanical ability to make marks
  • Seeing. Our “left brain” tends to “override” what we really see. This causes problems especially when foreshortening.
  • Mind-body connection - your ability to make marks combined with your ability to see.
  • Theory of what actually makes an image attractive, related to how the human visual perception works.
  • Experience applying all of these in practice and learning what works for that particular artist.
  • Mental/psychological aspect. There’s a lot of fear and doubt around creating art for some reason.
  • Emotional impact. Art is a thing because it causes emotion. Knowing how images influence emotions is a powerful tool.

For the image itself:

  • Composition
  • Value
  • Color
  • Form

2D Sketching

The first thing to learn. Biggest obstacle is overriding your “left” brain that tries to apply what it KNOWS about a thing (a car is longer than wider) rather than what you actually see (this car in perspective is equally wide and long). There are a lot of helpful techniques to aid in seeing:


  • Drawing everything with straight lines (curves are difficult to get just right)
  • “Dropping Verticals”
  • Enveloping the subject in a simple shape
  • Focusing on 2D shapes exclusively and ignoring the context.

And some “mechanical” ways to make it easier:

  • Quickly flicking your eyes back and forth between the subject and Drawing
  • Mirroring the canvas (when working digitially)
  • Flipping the image upside down, especially when working with faces.