An Easy Trick When
Learning To Draw

by Kerry Godsall

Do you wonder if it is ok to trace when it comes to learning to draw?

Different artists have very different viewpoints on this subject. I think it's fine to trace, so long as you don't do it mindlessly!

If you are struggling with drawing a horse, go ahead and trace it. Watch your pencil moving over the outline. Observe the form. Try to work out where you are going wrong when you draw it freehand.

Observe the shape that transforms into your drawing subject and get a feel for that subject. Then, draw the horse again, freehand. This is how I learnt to do it when I couldn't get the shape of an animal right. 

Notice that you will only achieve satisfaction with your drawings if you do them freehand.

Tracing will help you to "see" what you are drawing. Once you conquer drawing what you see, you'll be able to draw almost anything. You can buy art books that have tracing paper included so tracing is encouraged in some areas.

There are a lot of ways to learn to draw. Just try everything that you think will work for you and go with it. Every one of us has a different technique. There is no mould, no set way of learning to draw. Providing you don't get dependent on tracing, I feel it can only help you learn to draw.

Just remind yourself that tracing isn't drawing. Tracing and drawing are very, very different. Keep experimenting to find what suits you. Copying simple line drawings is the simplest way to kick off your drawing experience.

Remember, we learnt the Lord's Prayer by repetition. Tying shoelaces or reading and writing, are all learnt by repetition. You won't learn or master drawing unless you put the time in practicing. If you enjoy drawing as much as I do, that won't be a chore!

Anyone can trace. But don't stop there! Use tracing as a learning tool to improve your freehand drawing, and you'll be amazed at how quickly you make progress.

About The Author: Kerry Godsall is the webmaster at All About where you'll find plenty of easy pencil drawings and outlines to copy. 

Join the free newsletter at