Guides online often start the how to learn your own style with the advice of looking at your inspirations. I’m starting this is the other direction.
Style is learned, adopted, manipulated, and developed. Sometimes this is by accident, sometimes on purpose, and often a mixture of both. The style that you develop is one of a combination. it is your voice, your techniques, your colour choices, your compositions, your subject matter, and your media.
This is sometimes not an easy journey. For some artists, this takes years to develop, and some artists simply fall into their style and grow it for the rest of their careers. The thing is with finding your style, is even when you’ve found it, it starts to change.
Adapting your own style comes from looking and learning from your own art, as well as the objectives that you are trying to achieve.
Three things that I have learnt from adapting my own style (which, yes, is still constantly evolving), is that doodling doesn’t hurt, rinse and repeat, and keep at it.
Doodling doesn’t hurt
Some believe that doodling is for children, for those who do not take art seriously. I find that doodling is sometimes the escape that I need, a time to release and work in a free-form way. Doodles can evolve into stylized elements, which you can repeat time and time again.
Rinse and repeat
Draw the same thing again and again. Whether that be through doodling or a larger piece, your style will start appearing through repetition. You don’t have to draw the exact same thing, but perhaps a group of things such as wildflowers.
Keep at it
You need to keep at it, through the artist block, through the times that seem awful. You do need to take breaks, by putting the pen down and stepping back, but also completing a longer term project has its benefits. How about try Inktober or Project 365? Even if it is a doodle or something you have drawn before, get that pen in hand and go.
Everyone develops at different rates so don’t force yourself down a path that you feel like you have to go down just because someone has found their style quicker than you. Take breaks, but make sure you keep going at a regular pace.
Even someone who has done art for most of their life is still finding their style.