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For some reason I'm reminded of The Tick Omnibus, wherein was featured "How to draw The Tick" (The Tick is an unlikely superhero).

The complete instructions were something like this:

1. Draw an oval.

2. Bisect the oval with a straight line.

3. Draw The Tick holding an oval bisected by a straight line.

Gets me every time. As a programmer, though, I actually do something similar for my artwork--except step 3 is "hire an artist".

I'm not sure I can bend my brain to work like that of an artist, but what I do is look at graphics design pieces and do A/B comparisons between them. What's better about one or the other? How are things aligned? What are the nuanced technical details of shading, shadows, colors, highlights? Why that font?

It's really the same procedure I use if I want to learn the best, say, coding style or technique for a language. I look at code, and compare it to other code, and choose which looks best, and analyze why that is.

That's very procedural. A lot of art people I've talked to just mess with stuff until it "feels right", whatever the hell that means. It works for them, though!


Amusing, felt obligated to share the link to save people googling like I did!

imgur tells me they can't find that file ... http://www.thepoke.co.uk/2010/08/27/how-to-draw-an-owl/

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