Developing Artistic Style

One of the biggest concerns for budding artists is developing artistic style. One of the things that happens is that they start copying the styles of other artists that they admire. I did this for a while, too. I had never drawn comic book characters before and I happened to love Jim Lee’s style. At the time he was drawing for The X-Men. I liked his style so much that I found myself trying to draw just like him.

The problem was, that wasn’t my style. It was his!

Imitating someone else’s style prevents viewers from recognizing your work. (Photo Credit: Copyright: Kaspars Grinvalds)

So my work ended up looking like someone who was trying to draw like Jim Lee. That’s not what I wanted. I want people to look at my work and know it was my work, not someone else’s.

So then, how does one go about developing artistic style?

Here’s the ironic part…

However you draw naturally, IS your style. As you gain experience, that style will evolve with you. Trying to copy someone else’s style is like trying to copy their handwriting. It doesn’t work. It looks forced, like you’re trying too hard. That’s because that style isn’t yours and isn’t natural for you. Think about it…your natural style is like your signature. You wouldn’t want anyone to forge your signature, would you?

Are you looking in all the wrong places for your style? (Photo Credit: 123.RF Copyright: Ion Chiosea)

So don’t worry so much about developing artistic style. It will happen naturally. In fact, you actually can’t help but develop artistic style! Your own, individual style. As long as you keep drawing, practicing, and growing as an artist, your style will develop with you. It won’t be a cheap imitation of someone else’s style. It will be unique to you. It’s quite alright to admire someone else’s style, but honor your own style and develop it to the best of your ability.

Gift the world with YOUR style, not someone else’s. (Photo Credit: Copyright: 5second)

You were put on this earth to gift YOUR art to humanity, not art that looks like someone else’s.

Further Reading:

Never Apologize for Your Art



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Myra Naito

Myra Naito

Freelance copywriter who is passionate about art and fitness. Check out my art blog at or follow me @mnaito_fineart .