I bet someone thought I forgot about this place again, but I didn't I just had some internet trouble.
Now, I've added some nice links on the side of my blog listing important places on the net I like to go or recommend other people go to when they get started in drawing. I'm not saying everyone will find them useful, but hey, give it a shot.
Speaking of those links, there are a ton of places online that can help you with your drawing skills. the few I listed there are for a variety of people as far as skill and interest are concerned, but I find the most interesting for me in the past few months when I was in school was ImagineFX. They release a magazine every month with tips on painting digitally including tutorials and interviews with famous painters usually in the concept art business. Now, that doesn't mean run out and buy them, I mean, they are pretty steeply priced at $20 a pop (because they come with some shareware programs) so flip through all the pages at your local book shop and see if the stories inside are going to be helpful to you. Once you're done that, take notice of their website. This is a nice little gem too because on there they have some old tutorials posted up for you to look through for free and everyone likes free. So, the website has some cool tutorials on it, but don't forget to actually try them out! I find I usually need to try a technique three times with the tutorial beside me before I start to retain it! You don't get better by just reading it.
When you have had your fill of the tutorials, they also have a cool forum section. And I don't mean cool as in flashy, the forums are pretty tame, but if you found Conceptart.org intimidating to post on, these guys should be more comforting. On the forum they have monthly challenges and neat little "draw something every day" threads, which I find totally amusing. There are help threads (like the one I linked to) there and also book recommendations from other artists. It's like everything I wish I had time to participate in. Oh, and as a bonus, if you win the monthly challenges you could get your image posted in the ImageFX magazine. How is that for self advertising?
Okay, I think I went on a rant with ImagineFX and I'm not even getting paid for this shameless advertising. Jeez. So, forums, always a good place to get information. Like I briefly mentioned, you can also look into Conceptart.org for cool art, but I'm not sure what exactly is on there besides people's personal art posting. I assume it's very much the same as ImageFX, but more professionals on there. Deviant art is also a cool place for art, but I'll be honest, I find it disappointing at times. It's easy to post work and that I like a lot, but getting comments, critiques or feedback is next to impossible without already having a network of friends on there. Now, I've looked into the forums on there briefly (yes, they have them), but I didn't find anything really going on that interested me. More calls to talk about general aspects of life or personal opinions on some fine artist I didn't know. So, maybe I'm just unrefined, but I was looking for more of a sharing of work and ideas thing. If anyone knows where that is, leave me a comment.
Oh, final mention, artist's blogs are a nice place to get the inside scoop on their working habits (sometimes) and maybe get to know them so they would be more inclined to help you... don't look at me like that. In my next post I'll try and talk about being an observer and hopefully more on places to learn.
Hope that got you thinking.