I really hate to admit this, but I am completely and totally stuck in a rut right now when it comes to drawing cars. Sure, I’ve been drawing a lot lately, but man – every car I draw seems to be the same thing over and over again – and quite frankly I’m getting a little tired of it! You may have seen my recent post about the truck and SUV concepts I’ve been sketching lately, and the whole reason for drawing trucks like that was to break out of my comfort zone and draw the kinds of vehicles I don’t normally draw.
In an effort to force myself away from the typical sport-compact coupes that I normally draw (over and over again), I’ve been continuing on with the truck theme really hard. Yes, I’d much rather be drawing low-slung sports cars – but I’m not going to progress as a designer until I can feel comfortable drawing anything without worry of it slowly morphing back into a sports car the more I refine it.
I don’t normally start with a firm idea when sitting down to start a new concept sketch, but this time I clearly decided that I wanted to draw a small sport utility vehicle as I put pen to paper. Long story short (and as you can see), this ended up turning into a large Cadillac SUV complete with 24” wheels and an aggressive sports-car stance. Crikey – even my big trucks end up looking like sports cars!
But as I’ve said a million times before: practice, practice, practice. That was my whole motivation for starting this blog in the first place. I needed a place to put my sketches and renderings in a format where I could easily track progress and growth. I’m getting there…slowly but surely.
I tend to draw the same kinds of cars over and over again, and it’s really hard sometimes to break free of that and try new things. I’m so entrenched into a single style, as a matter of fact, that even my “new things” end up looking like the same kinds of cars I’ve been drawing for years!
Right after I posted a summary of my recent car drawings last month, I took notice how similar they all looked. I’ve known for years that I tend to draw the same vehicles over and over again but seeing everything together in a single image was really eye opening! Therefore, I decided that I would focus on drawing and sketching sport utility and crossover type vehicles for the next few weeks – just for a change of pace.
And you know what? Even my trucks still look like that two-door sport coupes that I typically draw! I think what I really need at this point is one of my transportation design professors from design school to make and appearance and ream me out for being too predictable and not pushing my design explorations far enough. I remember how crushing that felt to be ripped apart during open critiques in class, but you know what? I learned from that experience and I could definitely see myself growing as a designer while I was in school. But here I am, 20 years later (with very little practical industrial design experience under my belt) and I am finding myself wedged deeply into a safe and predictable style of design.
One of these actually morphed into a station wagon of some sort, so I just ran with it.
Perhaps I’m being too hard on myself. After all, I have absolutely no change careers and design cars for a living. That ship has sailed – at 41 years old, I’m not what the design studios are looking for. So what if I have a predictable style? More than anything I just want to refine my technique and be able to draw and illustrate cars in a way that makes people say “wow”. Do I need to be a cutting edge designer to do that? It would probably help I suppose, but I guess I’m not overly concerned about it.
More sketches coming soon!
I’m not an SUV guy at all, but as a family man, I understand the attraction that some people have for them. That said, I still don’t think that I could ever bring myself to drive one. However – drawing them is ok…and as a matter of fact, I was inspired to sketch my own design several nights ago. This is the result.
I guess you can think of it as a sporty SUV, with a raked roofline and hard angular edges. The surfaces are all generally flat and not very complex, which looks very clean to me. I’m not a big fan of intricate surfaces and textures, so it would be safe to say that hard edges and flat panels are quickly becoming my signature style.
I’m not totally happy with the rendering, as I feel like I rushed through the wheels and front end a bit – both elements lack refinement. However, I felt like I was starting to overwork the rendering anyway so it was best to leave it be and move on to my next design…