want to get into ID but cannot draw

I’m going into grade 12 (BC, Canada) and I’m 15 years old - I am quite bright and industrial design is one area that interests me greatly (I know that if I could make it in ID, I would definitely enjoy myself)… I’m good at graphic design and photography, I have an eye for what looks right, I have excellent design concepts, and I have done a few different engineering projects (using autoCAD and milling tools I made a watercooling system for my computer).

Unfortunately, I have absolutely zero drawing skills. If I use a ruler, or sketch out points and then draw shapes inbetween I’m usually fine, but I tend to suck shit freehand.

What can I do about this? Are there any related fields that would be right for me? If I can find a cutting-edge technical field (maybe math-related or science-y), I think I’d do alright (I am good at that stuff, after all)… I’m just not sure where I’m headed, and I think that engineering would be a huuuge bore.

Also, if you think I still have a shot at design (or can help me along the way), what school would be good? I can speak french quite fluently, so I supposed I could go to the university of montreal… (I really wanted to go to mcgill though)


Well… you could learn. You only need to practice to get better.

Find something that inspires you and try to draw every day. Try to copy sketches that you like, comics, etc.

Go out and try to draw what you see, people, buildings, cars, landscapes. It is fun and you will improve.

There are many post here on Core about drawing skills if you do some excavating, I’m sure you can find some helpful info. Drawing is not that difficult to learn if you practice every day, however it could take extremely long to get good if you get yourself discouraged, so stay positive and try to enjoy yourself.
An easy start would be go to your library and take out some books on perspective and the basic and go to work.

You can’t draw because you haven’t tried. I also assume you can’t play the violin, fly an airplane, or read latin.

It’s not because you’re incapable of doing those things, it’s because you’ve never tried hard enough. The only people who can’t draw are those without hands (and even then plenty of handicapped people paint with their mouths).

Pick up some drawing books, practice every day, and you’ll get better. You’re not expected to be an outstanding designer before you enter college, thats what college is for.

You can always become an engineer…except engineering is boring.

"You can always become an engineer…except engineering is boring… a guidance pro your not, nor do you know much about engineering…jeeze

I guess I forgot to include the smiley afterwards to indicate the joking nature of that comment. Easy there… :smiley:

I also switched from ME to ID at a school that’s made up of over 7000 engineers but only graduated 20 designers.

No prob, its a sore spot as I not only believe but KNOW most ID troops need to spend a few years in engineering to be well rounded.

Are you in the Vancouver area?

If so, I sent you PM with my phone number. Give me a call and we can meet over coffee or you’re welcome to come out to our office and we can chat a bit there.

Thanks guys! Yeah, I know that I can learn how to draw, it’s just that I really have no natural talent in it. If I do start sketching/drawing/etc, is my aim to be able to draw really well or just to clearly and effectively convey my idea? I know that I can definitely achieve the second, but if I’m going to have to be a pro sketcher, I know I’ll probably fall short.

Design drawing isn’t about being picasso. Being a designer in general is about being able to communicate ideas. That means being able to do it verbally, through writing, and through drawing.

Sketches don’t have to be these incredible photorealistic renderings, they need to be able to communicate your idea to your peers, clients, teachers, and most importantly yourself.

Really the main design field where being able to put together these incredible surreal digital paintings is the main skill would be the auto industry. In that area you need to not just be able to communicate your idea, but sell everybody emotionally.

Also there are plenty of tools to help you. The nice part about being a designer is you don’t have to do 1 sketch and expect it to be perfect. You can do a quick sketch, blow it up on a copier, trace over it to refine the idea, clean up the lines with some sweeps and templates, scan it into photoshop, color it in, fix all your mistakes, and print it out. Now you have a great looking rendering you can show to a client and hardly any of it had to do with your natural gifts as an artist.

That is a mighty nice offer from ip_wirelessly, take advantage. If you’re really serious about design you should jump at this opportunity it would be a mistake not to. :wink:

The way I see it, I had several people help me along my path. I am at a point now where paying it forward is the only way to go.

This offer is open to anyone that is interested in chatting about design. High School students, University, recent grads, collegues. I find I learn from every discussion I have along this thread.

So if you live in the Vancouver area, you’re visiting (Vancouver should be on everyone’s list of cities to see before they die), or whatever. I am just a couple clicks away.

PS…I love coffee :wink:

That is what it is all about.

Your last year of high-school is definitely not too late to learn to draw. Get sketching!

…and Picasso couldn’t really draw anyway. Man… his balls were SQUARE! :smiley:

Ip is getting older and wanting to help the new generation to get in to design…?
Or at least I hope its just that.

I also feel that I more or less know what I missed in scool and want to help the new generation to get there better prepared.


From the way I see it, you are not just bright, but very bright.
Drawign skills can be learnt. And even these days you don’t need a natural talent for drawing to become an artist. So nevermind a designer. But you must have excellent problem solving skills, a keen eye for details and a good aesthetic sense.

Of course if you were born with all the talents, you would take a much shorter time to learn; hence achieve further in a shorter time. But even if you aren’t, you could put in the effort and learn them up. Doesn’t really matter if you are a born genius or not.

just to add on, you reminded me of my time when i wanted to do ID and was in the crossroads what to do and where to do it. Be very grateful that the internet is here to help. In my time, I had to use the snail mail and it took like about a year to be really definite how to go about it.

I am somewhat different from a lot of designers. I come from an academic background with art as one of my subjects. I had no tech skills when I started college but i keep my eyes open and see how the rest who came in with those skills. It was hard. I came up with ideas and methods very fast, I could sketch very well. But my tech skills were no good. It took me thrice the time to complete what others take to do a model. But I develop a way around it and I could still make it. I think you are bright enough to sort this out.

Go to the Library and get some drawing books…Architectural pespective books are great!
If you can afford, go on and get some private drawing lessons.
Just do your best and I am sure that you will learn the basics of drawing.