Learn to Draw Kawaii - Drawing Challenge (2024)

November 13th, 2016|How to Draw|


Learn to Draw Kawaii - Drawing Challenge (1)Do you wish you could draw like this? Do you wantto be able to produce kawaii drawings anytime, anywhere, and on any subject? Yes, me too!

When I first discovered the work of PicCandle(the drawingon the right), I was mesmerised.

I thought, “OMG, these are amazing.” And then I thought, “I want to draw like this!”

My “Grand Plan” to Learn How to Draw Kawaii in 6 Months

Can it really be done? Can I learn to draw like this?

At first I felt intimidatedby how awesome the drawings look, and how difficult the task seems to be…

But I kept coming back to it in my mind, week after week.

One dayI was listening to a podcast by Tim Ferrisson how to learn any skill fast. That’s it!!! That’s the answer to my challenge!

I decided to apply the techniquesTim talks about to learning how to draw kawaii. I am giving myself 6 months of (somewhat) focused practice to see what can be achieved. I say “somewhat”, because I am a Mum of a very energetic toddler :). So I have very limited time to practice.

Tim Ferriss’ Method for Learning Anything Faster

The methodis to break down skill into the smallest learnable units. Then select and practice the units that have the biggest effect on the desired outcome (in this case, ability to draw kawaii).

To help remember the steps, Tim suggests an acronym DiSSS (ignore the “i”): Deconstruct, Select, Sequence, Stakes.

Let’s look at how each step applies to learning kawaii.


What are the simplest skills that are required to draw kawaii successfully.I started by making a list (in no particular order). I just looked at the drawings I want to createand listed what I thought to berelevant.

  • Use of materials
  • Thickness of lines
  • Ability to draw perfect circles
  • Textures
  • Balance of light and dark
  • Colour
  • Eyes
  • Mouths
  • Face shapes
  • Body shapes
  • Hands
  • Feet
  • Clothes
  • Accessories
  • Storytelling
  • Emotion
  • Interaction between objects
  • Combining different shapes in an interesting design
  • Large visual vocabulary of images (knowing how to draw many things from memory)
  • Consistency
  • Perseverance
  • Ability to colour in large areas fast and even
  • Lettering

As you can see, it’s a large and unfocused list. All over the place! But that’s ok, next step is selecting the skills that matter.


Ispokewith a few friends who draw to select my top skills. I also used my own experience…

I’ve concluded that the most important skills to practice are“pen skills”. If I can master the foundational skills of drawing straight lines and (almost) perfect circles, I could then focus on memorising many kinds of faces etc. But I wouldn’t be stressed about my lines looking shaky and uneven.

The rest of the skills on the list still have to be practiced, I think… But later.

I eliminated “use of materials” and “colouring in large areas” because these will be practiced as part of other skills. I also skipped “colour”because it’s not directly related to the style of kawaii that I am learning right now.

Ability to draw many things from memory is something that happens over time. I am putting this skill as a future project.


I havesequenced the skills as follows:

  1. Pen skills:drawing lines, circles, textures, etc
  2. Characterdesign skills: faces, accessories, hair styles etc
  3. Storytelling skills: how to make appealing drawings that have a point

Set up Stakes

I have to set up stakes to make sure that I actually show up and do the work. How will I stayaccountable? How will I get through the days when I don’t feel like drawing?

Well, making this a public experiment is my way of setting up stakes 🙂

My Learning Schedule

I am giving myself approximately 6 months to practice. To simplify things I am assuming 4 weeks in each month. I know it’s more, but I am creating a schedule that will go over 6 months x 4 weeks = 24 weeks.

Pen skills (Months 1 – 3)

Month 1

  • Week 1: How to draw freakishly straight lines
  • Week 2: How to draw beautiful curves
  • Week 3: How to draw (almost) perfect circles
  • Week 4: How to draw squares, triangles and other shapes

Month 2

  • Week 5: Ability to space out objects evenly
  • Week 6: Thick and thin lines: how to make outlines effective withline thickness
  • Week 7: What makes “good” design
  • Week 8: Using areas of light and dark to achieve “good” design

Month 3

  • Week 9: Textures and patterns
  • Week 10: Lettering
  • Week 11: More lettering!
  • Week 12: Combiningand collaging shapes in a “good” design

Character Design (Months 4 – 5)

Month 4

  • Week 13: Eyes and mouths
  • Week 14: Faces, expressions
  • Week 15: Head and body shapes
  • Week 16: Hands and feet

Month 5

  • Week 17: Clothes
  • Week 18: Accessories
  • Week 19: Hair styles
  • Week 20: Interaction with objects

Storytelling (Month 6)

Now, I know 1 month is NOT enough to learn storytelling. This is just an introduction. My aim is tolearn a few scenes that can be used for kawaii situations.

Like building a visual vocabulary of images, storytelling is an on-going practice. I will start simple and build on it.

Month 6

  • Week 21: Storytelling
  • Week 22:Narrative
  • Week 23: Evoking emotions
  • Week 24: Humour

Drawing Results Week by Week

  • Week 1: How to draw freakishly straight lines
  • Week 2: How to draw smooth curves
  • Week 3: How to draw (almost) perfect circles
  • Week 4: How to draw 3D Cubes and Freehand Stars
  • Week 5: How to space objects evenly for borders and patterns
  • Week 6:How to Use Outlines for Images That Pop
  • Week 7:Principles of Good Design for Kawaii Drawings
  • Week 8:How to Use Light and Dark to Achieve Good Design
  • Week 9: 40 Patterns and Textures to Use for Kawaii Drawings
  • Week 10: Hand Lettering and Typography for Kawaii Drawings – Part 1
  • Week 11: Hand Lettering and Typography for Kawaii Drawings – Part 2
  • Week 12: Create Super Awesome Kawaii Doodle in 5 Easy Steps
  • Week 13: How to Draw Kawaii Eyes and Mouths
  • Week 14: How to Draw Kawaii Faces and Expressions
  • Week 15: How to Draw Kawaii Body Shapes and Design Kawaii Characters
  • Week 16: How to Draw Kawaii Hands and Feet
  • Week 17: How to Draw Clothes for Kawaii Characters
  • Week 18: How to Draw Kawaii Accessories
  • Week 19: How to Draw Kawaii Hairstyles
  • Week 20: How to Add Objections to Kawaii Drawings
  • Week 21: Powerful StorytellingTechniques
  • Week 22: Proven Ways to Create Narrative
  • Week 23: Illustrations That Evoke Emotion
  • Week 24: How to Draw Funny Drawings

Subscribe to my newsletter (see footer) to receive my free kawaii drawing mini-course!

The challenge is all done 🙂 Thank you so much for coming along on this journey. ♥


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Learn to Draw Kawaii - Drawing Challenge (7)


6 years ago

How wonderful and inspiring you are! This is sooo cool! I’d love to be able to do this…I love the way you have explained everything…xxx…

You asked for helpful comments….I think it is the other way around….you are the one with all the helpful information.

Thank you xxx…




Tatyana Deniz

6 years ago

Reply to Mina

Oh Mina, thank you so much for these supporting words! I believe so strongly that anyone who wants to learn how to draw, can do so with proper instructions. 🙂 Every time someone finds success with my tutorials, it’s makes my day. Thank you for your comment, and let’s stay in touch!!



Learn to Draw Kawaii - Drawing Challenge (9)


6 years ago

only just found your blog. this is great stuff. can’t wait to read the rest




Tatyana Deniz

5 years ago

Reply to nafoyo

Awesome! Welcome 🙂


Learn to Draw Kawaii - Drawing Challenge (11)

Emily Karson

7 years ago





Tatyana Deniz

5 years ago

Reply to Emily Karson

Yay! It’s so much fun to draw kawaii. 🙂 I hope you create something really cute.



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