I don’t actually feel so colorful today…
A friend died of cancer…
So I feel actually quite ambiguous.
I feel very sad of course
But at the same time I feel a huge urgency : with her death, she’s reminding me that life is so short and I shouldn’t waste it.
I should enjoy it while I’m still healthy !

“Enjoy yourself”, she’s screaming in my head
“Don’t take yourself so gdamn seriously and enjoy life! Play!”

Take a pause now and then
To reflect on what’s really important
What’s really important in your life?
What makes you happy and
What brings you joy?
Stop running
And take time
For a cup of tea
Or coffee
A cup of what makes you happy.

A cup of painting and drawing … Playing more!

Often people tell me that it’s easy to draw and paint when you have “talent”… It’s not about “talent’ ! It’s about developing your skills.

You want to learn how to draw? Just draw a bit every day.

You want to write a book? Just write a bit every day. 

Instead of watching Netflix, for instance… 😉

Here are some great questions I read from Seth Godin in his book “The Practice”:

“What if talent isn’t nearly as important as skill? Are there creators who have made up for lack of magical talent by earning a skill instead?
What skills would transform your work?
Does anyone else have that skill?
Do you care enough to learn it? What would it require for you to gain the skill you need?”

Of course we have to make choices. You can’t do everything. What do you care enough about, to spend time learning, doing more of? The more you do it, the better you get ! I wasn’t born with drawing skills. I just did a lot of it ! Hours & hours & hours…!

A question which comes back from people who want to learn how to draw and paint is “where do I start (to learn how to draw)?” I think best is to start drawing an object or a subject you like. Because you’ll learn better when you have FUN and ENJOY what you do. So don’t draw something you don’t like or don’t find beautiful.

If you want to keep it simple and fun in observation drawing : you have to learn how to really look at the subject you want to draw, and draw what you really see. Trust your eyes and don’t overthink: just DRAW. Just do it. Look at all the edges and look in what direction the lines are going and put that on the paper. I explain all that in my course on Skillshare. You can try for 2 weeks for free by clicking on this link if you like : here.

There are no magic trick, no shortcuts. You want to improve your drawing? Just draw. Every day. Even if it’s only for 5 minutes. (Usually you start for 5 minutes and you end up drawing for one hour….  Grab a pencil and paper and enjoy yourself. Pay attention to how you look ant things. Look carefully, and put that on the paper.

Try new ways of looking and drawing, experiment and enjoy yourself. Try some colors, try new colors, new paper and new brushes. Make what you find beautiful. Don’t overthink. Don’t judge. Don’t be too hard on yourself. And ship! Show it to the world. On Instagram or Facebook. Connect with other artists.

Look at the urbansketchers and look how others are drawing and painting and try that. Go drawing outside with other artists. Have fun.

Do what you find beautiful and that way you’ll find your style.


I realise now that I didn’t share the great Instagram live demonstration I did with the beautiful Maria Coryell-Martin from Arttoolkit. (from the pocket palettes!)

Here it is: https://arttoolkit.com/blog/2020/09/sketching-with-barbara-luel/ 

Did you try my Skillshare class already? You can try 2 weeks for free !

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