I was recently feeling low about my drawings, but then I received a comment on my Instagram account, “Your drawing made me smile.” These 5 simple words have instantly transformed how I felt about drawing.
Why do we draw? Because we have something to say, because we want to connect with people, because we have a smile to share.
One of the best ways to entertain your viewers is to draw kind and funny drawings. These are the drawings we want to see again and again.
In my previous post I looked at drawings that evoke emotion. In this post I will explore funny drawings, and how to achieve really good drawing results with humour.
5 Ways to Make Drawings Funny
- Use puns and wordplay. This is a classic way to receive a smile. Does this look familiar?
- Exaggerate what is already funny. For example, an elephant has a long nose and a giraffe has a very long neck. Can these be used in a funny way? Below I show funny examples of both of these.
- Illustrate annoying experienced that we can all relate to. Reluctant (read “slow and rude”) bank tellers? Mosquitos? Traffic jams?
If you feel your blood pressure rising (I do!), have a laugh at this drawing by Matt Golding.
- Draw mischief. I can fill a book with funny mischievous things that my 2-year-old does. And think of the wit and mischief of a little mouse Jerry from the Tom and Jerry Show. It’s hilarious!
- Create a surprising outcome by misleading the mind.
These are just some ideas to get started. Look at lots of funny drawings by people you admire. I find newspaper cartoons to be a good source of effective illustrated humour. I don’t particularly seek political cartoon genre, but I look at HOW the artists make the drawings funny. How do they find that golden thread of humour in everyday life.
Stay open and observant in your everyday life, and you will see lots funny situations! When you come across one, take a note of it in a little diary or your phone (I use the Evernote app). Soon you will have plenty of funny material to use in your drawings. 🙂
Funny Drawings by Three Artists That Nailed It
Here are three artists that I admire for their ability to make people laugh.
1. John Potter
John Potter spent years as the newsroom artist for the Billings Gazette in Montana, USA. He is now a traditional landscape artist, but his cartooning skills are admirable. Here is his take on the excuses that artists use (and how not to need them).
2. Shannon Wheeler
Shannon Wheeler is an illustrator and cartoonist who appeared in the Onion newspaper and The New Yorker. He publishes a weekly comic at the Adhesive Comics website.
3. Matt Golding
Matt Golding is an Australian political cartoonist appearing in the Sunday Age newspaper and the Melbourne Times. He published a book called “Three-Second Thoughts”. Below are 3 pages from his book.
My Personal Efforts at Funny Drawings
Here is what I came up with for this week’s drawings, based on the research you see above, and a few quiet minutes of thinking after getting my son to bed. It’s amazing what 5 minutes of silence can uncover! 😀
Materials I Used This Week
- Copic Multiliner Pen, black, size 0.3
- Micron Graphic Pen, black, size 1
- Tombow Dual Brush, black
- Strathmore Drawing Paper (Vellum Surface)
Drawing Time Diary
Mon, April 24: 15 mins
Tues, April 25: 30 mins, 1 hr
Wed, April 26: 1 hr, 45 mins, 1 hr 15 mins
Thur, April 27: 1 hr, 1 hr 30 mins
Fri, April 28: 30 mins
Sat, April 29: 1 hr
Sun, April 30: no drawing (blogging)
Total drawing time: 8 hours 45 mins
This is the final week of my 6-month drawing challenge. Yay for actually finishing it! Thank you for your support along the way, it’s what kept me going when going got hard. 🙂
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I will do a re-cap of what I learned in a separate post. Check again soon for fresh articles and thoughts! ♥
i love the giraffes
Awesome. 🙂 They were fun to draw!
how do you do it i try and im noware as good
It takes practice to learn how to draw, but it’s really possible! I didn’t learn drawing as a child, but then when I was in my 20’s I decided to just go for it. 🙂 Practice one skill at a time (for example, just practice circles one day and faces another day), and it will happen.
Thank you so much for the reply and for the link 🙂
I’ve made a plan with all the little steps to learn how to draw kawaii. I’ll let you know how things go!
Well, I’m following you on Instagram now. 🙂
Have a nice day!
That sounds awesome, Fra! I would love to see what you create, yes please stay in touch and let me know how things go. 🙂 It’s a REALLY good idea to open Instagram, because it creates accountability and helps to connect with a community of people drawing similar things. Have a great day too, I’ll be thinking of you. 🙂
Do you have any suggestions on how to learn how to draw in a more realistic way? I would really like to learn how to draw but I’ve never been good at it. A month ago I read your post about learn how to draw Kawaii in 6 months following the Ferriss’ DiSSS method and probably for the first time I’ve realized that maybe I could do it (I really really liked to find that post. At the moment, to be honest, I haven’t finished all the articles of that serie but I’ll do it). I was wondering if you… Read more »
Hi Fra, thank you so much for your comment! I am honoured to create something that helps you. 🙂 Yes, absolutely, this method can be applied to leaning ANY skill, including realistic style of drawing. Anyone can draw with practice, I guarantee it. I didn’t start learning how to draw until well into my 20’s, and within 1 year of intense practice I could draw a realistic human figure. No “talent”, just work and belief that I can do it. Here is a link to the podcast by Tim Ferris, if you would like to learn more about the DiSSS… Read more »