How to Lose the Fear of Inking

1. Understand that you have mastered the sketching techniques and that, in order to not be limited to express yourself as an artist, you need to carry on to next step. This is true for any drawing stage. Once you master inking, then your next move could be to master inking with different colors, or to decide which coloring technique you will learn first. Once you learn how to color (be it digital or non-digital) then your next steps should be to master the next thing that can bring your drawing to the next level. Did you master drawing still life? How about living things? Moving things? Have you tried drawing sound? Smell? Touch?
In manga, once you learn how to stroke the lines of your pencil, adding ink to your drawing just gives it more of a finished look even if you never intend to color it. You have mastered sketching. If so, then you can master anything that comes with it :)

 

2. Realize that pencil strokes are not permanent. And depending on the paper you drew on, your drawing could fade with time. For drawings I would really like to keep around, I use “Acid-Free drawing paper” and because I hate to have loose papers all over the house, I buy sketchbooks that specifically say that. When I want to draw things that may or may not be important, I use regular sketchbook that is not acid-free because they are usually cheaper and contain double the amount of pages than the acid-free sketchbooks.
And here is where inking can save your drawing: if you happen to draw on the cheaper sketchbook because you were looking to draw anything and not your next master piece, and yet end up with a master piece, then you will not want it to fade because of the acid in the paper. So, inking that drawing can help you secure your work. Besides, when done properly, your drawing looks cooler when inked.

 

sketchbooks

 

3. Know that inking can help you master coloring techniques. Let’s say you have a drawing of a beautiful beach day and you are so eager to try your new watercolor set and then boom! You weren’t too sure how to paint with watercolor and now your drawing is forever gone… well, it doesn’t need to end this way. Instead of coloring the original drawing, you could, after your ink your drawing, make copies of the original  and use the copies, not the original, to try your new set of watercolor paint! Inking a drawing can help your printer make better copies. If you try to make copies of a drawing that you haven’t inked, then you are bound to get copies that will be missing a few lines because either the pencil strokes have smeared or because you drew with little to no pressure against the paper. Inking takes care of this. Once a drawing it’s inked, every single stroke will get perfectly photocopied for you to experiment different coloring techniques.

 

 

4. No one gets it right all the time. We all make mistakes and you shouldn’t see mistakes as failures but as proof that you are challenging yourself to swim in foreign waters. And that is a good thing. You want diversity and fun and surprise in your drawings. You don’t want it to be lifeless. You want to bring into your art parts of you and the world you live in and the more you do that, the more mistakes you are bound to make and the better your drawing skills will become. Take a notice of the dates of all of your drawings. Even in a couple of months you will see how much you have improved! Now, imagine how much will you improve in one year? Three years? Ten Years?… The possibilities are endless!

 

5. Did you know that there are more than a handful of inking techniques? This means that you can experiment and find the inking technique you feel the most comfortable! Personally, I think it is helpful to master more than one just because it adds more texture to your drawings. Of course, feeling comfortable with all of them is a plus! But the point is, don’t be anxious about not being good at one technique. There are many more you can try and master!

Inking Techniques
6. If you do mess it and you have already inked more than 50 percent of your drawing, it is totally okay to try and use a corrector! Of course, the less you use it the better. But I have seen drawings that have been corrected and you can’t really tell the artists ever used a liquid paper 0.0 Part of this is the liquid corrector they used. The higher the quality the less noticeable it will be on paper. It also depends on the amount of inking you have to correct. If you mess up a quarter of an inch of your drawing, it will be more noticeable than if you mess up one tenth of an inch.

 

7. Try to have fun with it! This is an important part that always gets forgotten. If you want to try something new the best attitude is to have fun and enjoy every part of it. I am really a nervous person so things can get harder on me than they actually are. So, before I let my fear of messing up consume me away, I always try to enjoy what I do and doing this relaxes me to the point that if I do mess up, I realize it wasn’t the end of the world ^_^

 
Share your thoughts \(^o^)/ What did you do to lose the fear to ink?

Naomi Husband
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Naomi Husband

Fun facts about me:
-My actual last name is Husband.
-I am obsessed with Cheese ^o^
-Before drawing manga, I studied writing, photography and the art of forgiving.
- I could use some physical activity.
-Although I have always loved dogs, lately a stray furry friend is stealing my heart.
Naomi Husband
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2 thoughts on “How to Lose the Fear of Inking

  1. Inking is so important! >_< You're right!
    I was scared of it at first, because of all the materials out there – I didn't know what to use! And also, my first lines with pen nibs and ink were REALLY bad haha….
    But in the end, it's necessary to learn it and once you're comfortable with different inking techniques, it's so much fun! :D Like you said, mistakes aren't the end of the world! ^^

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