I started drawing cars when I was 10 years old, and I remember how frustrating it was to not be able to draw cars exactly like I saw in the magazines. Being so young and having dreams crushed so easily doesn’t do much for building confidence and self esteem, but it did teach me a thing or two about hard work and determination.
All I knew is that I wanted to learn how to draw cars. Period. I was completely obsessed with it, thanks in large part to the automotive artwork of Duane Kuchar that I saw each month in the pages of Motor Trend magazine. He was a god to me – I greatly admired his artistic style and technique, which was very precise and clean while still being loose enough to be classified as art.
This was a time that was way before the internet (mid 1980’s), so his artwork was pretty much my sole influence. Even though my car drawing skills were laughable, I started trying to copy his style as best I could. I spent countless hours pouring over his automotive illustrations, learning about reflections and light, perspective, and trying to replicate those elements into my own drawings.
Without realizing it, I was learning like a sponge and developing my artistic skills. I still remember the realization I had two years later when I suddenly realized how much better I was at drawing – not just cars but all things in general. It was an exciting realization, and it gave me even more energy than I had before to keep going and pushing me towards life as a car designer.
The point of all this is that I succeeded by focusing on drawing cars – and not trying to focus on success itself. It’s a philosophy I still follow to this day and it may be perhaps the best piece of advice I can give to anyone who wants to learn how to draw cars. Don’t worry – just draw, and the results will naturally follow.