16 Best Online Drawing Classes To Try In 2021

A man learning how to draw on a sketch pad from an online drawing class

Self-improvement and skill development have flourished in the last year to cope with a global pandemic. Drawing particularly became a sensation, from classroom doodles to an online guided charcoal sketch. Luckily, we found the best online drawing classes to help you get through another leg of quarantine.

Best Online Drawing Classes for Beginners

1. Drawing and Sketching for Beginners with Robin Slee

Take a few hours of your day and invest in your art skill with Robin Slee's introductory-level drawing class. Udemy hosts the best online drawing classes, including this exciting art course. Slee will teach you the proper way to hold a pencil, how to angle it without implicating other parts of your sketch, and how to create stark contrasts when blending.

This three-hour course is segmented into 25 modules and gives students a couple of practical exercises downloadable from Udemy to further improve their skills. The best thing about this course is Slee's patience with his students and clarifying directions that are straight to the point without figuring out any art jargon. A pencil or pen, as well as a sketchbook or textured paper, is all you need to start.

2. Pen and Ink Illustration: The Basics for Creating Magical Drawings with Yasmina Creates

Kids drawing with ink pens

Another one of Skillshare's superb classes for artists who love using pens in their style of art. Yasmina Creates hosts this online drawing class that breaks down the various supplies that work with Pilot Precise V7 pens. She talks about the interaction of certain media with other tools and how they produce depth on any paper or canvas.

This drawing course will also focus on multiple art styles like illustrative, realism, and cartoons. This is a beginner-level online class, so anyone is welcome to join and learn something new in art. With a free premium membership at Skillshare, you can get this class for free.

3. Drawing Basics with David Jamieson

Amateur doodlers can finally try their hand in a beginner's art class with Vitruvian Studio and David Jamieson. For $200, you'll learn the fundamentals in a 10-step module. Topics include creating proportions, how each drawing material is relevant to every proportion you make, and other techniques like "squinting," which significantly impacts capturing subtle curvatures. 

This 22-hour drawing course gives you 62 lessons with pre-recorded videos. It's particularly great for beginners since it allows them to go at their own pace. The online class provides exercises, diagrams, and animations to illustrate certain concepts for practice.

4. Colored and Graphite Pencil Drawing with Mary Jane Begin

Colored pencils

This best online drawing class is a promising investment to improve your drawing skill further using colored and graphite pencils. Mary Jane Begin is an award-winning illustrator and children's picture book author who attended Rhode Island School of Design.

Best for amateurs, Begin leads aspiring artists worldwide to understand the versatility and function of color from graphite pencils. This online drawing class offers nine pre-recorded video lessons in HD that will cover the vast uniqueness of graphite pencils, graphite tonalities, and shading, among others.

5. Sketch like an Industrial Designer With Jorge Paricio

Learn from impressive art professionals like Jorge Paricio, a soaring sketch artist and designer whose works have been influenced by Pratt Institute. His lectures will teach beginners how to render objects from multiple perspectives while also finding the best approach to simulate reflections and materials.

This best online drawing class offers 16 video lessons in HD quality that is 2 hours and 45 minutes long. It also includes bonus content that will help you get a deeper look into industrial design using various dry media to make your work stand out.

6. Introduction to Animal Anatomy with Joe Weatherly

A man sketching his pet dog lying down

Joe Weatherly's online drawing class for animal anatomy is recommended for beginners and animal lovers alike. Weatherly specializes in three-dimensional structures that will cover topics like the anatomy of forelimbs, canines, and bovine animals, among others.

This drawing course consists of 10 lessons, 9-hour videos, and a step-by-step process that Joe Weatherly will walk you through, wherever you are in the world. This will help students understand animals' anatomy and the vast differences applied when drawing human features.

Best Online Drawing Classes for Intermediate to Advanced Level

7. Pencil Portrait Techniques with Gabrielle Brickey

Great for anyone who is already versed in the basics, this best online drawing class is worth a try. Gabrielle Brickey partners with Skillshare to create a course covering the intricacies of pencil art while spotlighting the do's and don't when using dry media like graphite pencils.

She also sheds light on making the facial features pop on any canvas while also highlighting simple ways to create better proportions. Brickey's online drawing syllabus uses a set of supplies that intermediate-level artists already have, such as blending stumps, erasers, cotton swabs, and mechanical pencils.

Among a few others, Brickey's class is free for 14 days when you sign up for an ad-free premium membership with Skillshare at $19 a month or an annual rate of $99.

8. Head Drawing with Steve Huston, Charles Hu, Mark Westermoe, and Glenn Vilppu

This drawing course is perfect for intermediate-level artists or those who have potential in figure drawing. Along with other professional artists, including Glenn Vilppu, Steve Huston will lead you into a four-part head drawing online class.

Learn the versatility and precise techniques from industry professionals. This class features 19 lessons that are 52 hours long, separated into three different levels. Steve Huston will teach students the basics of drawing a human head and its intricate facial structure.

9. Figure Drawing Fundamentals with Stan Prokopenko

Stan Proko's 15.5-hour course is a gold mine for intermediate-level artists who wish to expand their newfound knowledge on figure drawing. Prokopenko is a renowned fine arts painter for the Watts Atelier School in California. Get a glimpse of his experience in the field when you sign up for this best online drawing class.

It offers beginners and professionals a refresher on tackling human figures by breaking down shapes into simple forms. Structure, gesture, balance, and proportions are discussed in detail with extended versions in free videos that anyone can access. This online drawing class is an entirely downloadable video that will allow you to pause and replay to understand the process better.

10. Charcoal Drawing with Aaron Blaise

 A woman drawing a face with charcoal vine

Aaron Blaise's animation and illustration experience has spanned decades in many Disney movies, from Mulan, Aladdin, to Brother Bear and The Lion King. 

This online drawing class will not only showcase the fundamentals of charcoal as a versatile medium in art, but it also allows you to view in real-time how Blaise creates beautiful artworks with proper light, shadows, and toning. This five-hour course offers professionals an advanced-level, 6 HD tutorial video that will help elevate charcoal drawing skills. 

11. Drawing Essentials with Glenn Vilppu

A 10-week course for $800 may seem steep, but for professionals who appreciate precision-driven learning in art, this online drawing class is an excellent option to consider. Glenn Vippu will engage students in the fundamentals and new techniques adapted into his style of figure drawing. This syllabus will discuss the essence of lines and value, all the way to modeling tones and creating a sense of realism using light and shadows.  

Vilppu Academy hosts world-class talent with stellar art techniques used in drawing classes for several years now. This might be one of the best online drawing classes on our list simply because it offers personalized sessions wherein Vilppu groups students and gives them real-time critique as they work on their pieces.

12. Proko's Online Portrait Drawing Courses

Get in-depth insights from Stan Prokopenko's online course on portrait drawing. This 7.5-hour online drawing class covers the process of creating life-like features by studying the anatomy of the eyes, nose, lips, and ears. It is presented in an engaging way to keep participants interested and invested, one stroke at a time.

The highlight of this drawing course is the two full-length, real-time portrait demos from start to finish. This gives viewers a deeper look into each blending technique while giving you the full autonomy to pause and rewind to absorb the process entirely.

Reviews about this online drawing class have been positive and continue to wow amateurs and professionals for Proko's ability to break down every complex approach into concrete and straightforward steps.

13. Ink Drawing Techniques with Yuko Shimizu

Another Skillshare gem, Yuko Shimizu's ink drawing course, is a must to join if you're a serious artist interested in expanding their style in pen drawing. Yuko Shimizu is a New York-based illustrator who partnered with Skillshare to showcase her go-to techniques to produce the most scintillating art.

The syllabus of this 90-minute drawing class includes the vitality of supplies in ink drawings, such as which inks and paper to use, essential brush, nib, and ink techniques applied to a canvas in contrast to wet other dry media.

With 15 separate lessons, you won't have to worry about absorbing too much of everything at once. This online drawing class is ideal for intermediate-level artists interested in learning Asian drawing styles.

14. Landscape Drawing with Amy Wynne

Landscape drawing is another skill set to develop when creating beautiful works of art. Find your hand in this media with Amy Wynne's landscape online drawing class. Amy Wynne is a long-time painter and teacher at Rhode Island School of Design. This class is held on Creative Live for a monthly subscription or a one-time fee for the course alone.

Wynne's landscape drawing course specifically offers seven pre-recorded video lessons in HD, covering seascapes, countryside, and industrial landscapes. Using a viewfinder is also tackled and how to choose the correct ratio of your sky and land. This 49-minute class will help you achieve depth in your drawings by establishing proper atmosphere and shadows to make your work pop.

Best Online Drawing Classes for All Levels

15. The Ultimate Drawing Course: Beginner to Advanced with Jaysen and Quinten Batchelor

Another Udemy online drawing class to sign up for is Jaysen and Quinten Batchelor's Ultimate Drawing Course. This best online drawing class is open to beginners and advanced-level illustrators who will learn on a syllabus featuring 11 sections and 63 class lectures. 

Topics for discussion include the fundamentals of drawing, creating texture in life portraits, and understanding the role of space, value, and contrast in your work. This drawing course will offer a new perspective on how to incorporate new techniques into your art. 

You can also access a bonus section at the end of the drawing class, wherein you will learn animation in a thorough step-by-step guide. They will also provide you with lifetime access to course materials, quizzes, exercise worksheets, and most importantly, personal contact with the course tutor.

16. The Complete Drawing Masterclass: Beginner to Advanced with Chad Newman and Jonathan Simon

This Udemy drawing masterclass for all levels is hosted by Chad Newman and Jonathan Simon, professional graphic designers and illustrators with years of experience in their respective fields. This course only requires a pencil, paper, and eraser, but any artist is welcome to use vine, compressed charcoal, kneaded eraser, and a blending stump to improve their grip on the media.

Each lecture is in-depth and provides a better comprehension of lines, structure, tone, and value, among others. They also highlight the art and science behind portrait drawing, especially the face's anatomy and structure. This online drawing class is also excellent for graphic designers and professionals looking to improve their drawing skills.

How to Choose the Best Online Drawing Class for You

A professional artist in his studio

When it comes to self-improvement, learning new skills is a significant first step. However, it's essential to make some considerations before spending time and money on a new challenge. Here are a few factors to consider before choosing the best online drawing class.

  • Skill Level

Many online art classes are beginner-friendly, but not all are suitable for learning something new. It is ideal to know where you are skill-wise and re-evaluate if you fall under the beginner, intermediate, or advanced level. 

Think about the art tools and how many supplies you are already familiar with. If you're not sure what a kneaded eraser is and how it helps blend and highlight a drawing, then maybe you should avoid week-long drawing courses that are beyond your knowledge.

  • The Teacher

Another crucial part of choosing an online drawing class is the person teaching you. If you're an art student and are particularly familiar with industry experts, then looking for their courses could be a fantastic way to save on art school tuition fees. 

Check their credentials and experience level to see how much they could offer you. If you're spending money for every minute they're explaining a new technique, ensure you're absorbing this information from a certified artist.

Not all talented artists hold a degree, but many have broad experience in various mediums that fall into a specific niche. Tread lightly and see which range of topics the teacher will be covering to match your skill level when looking for the best online drawing class. 

  • Type of Media

The type of media an online drawing class often varies, with many instructors giving students the flexibility to choose which medium they want to use. Whether it's pastel, charcoal, colored pencils, or graphite, know which one you're willing to explore.

Some media-specific courses like Charcoal Drawing with Aaron Blaise show you how to manipulate the charcoal medium to achieve better contrast and create depth in your work. It's all up to you and how much you are willing to challenge yourself and widen your skill set.

  • Price

Like any other investment, check your preferred online drawing class’s price and see which ones fit your budget. If you're an art student living on a budget, consider free drawing courses on platforms like Proko

There are also long-term options to consider for those willing to stretch the budget. One way is through Creative Live or Skillshare, which gives you the chance to make monthly payments to access a drawing course and even more beyond art, all for free.

Learn from the Experts

We hope our list of the best online drawing classes sparked your interest to invest in improving your art skills. Let us know which drawing course are you planning to take. And if you want to recommend an online drawing class that helps create stunning masterpieces, you could share that too in the comments.

1 comment

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