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How to draw psychedelic art

Updated April 17, 2017

Psychedelic art is bright, bold and colourful. It is easily recognisable by its obscure colours, patterns and abstract style. It will help you if you are familiar with this particular style of drawing. Flicking through art or graphic design magazines are two places to seek inspiration. Then, you can learn to draw in a psychedelic style by using some simple techniques used by artists. Tune into your inner hippie and create an individual piece of artwork.

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  1. Review examples of psychedelic art to get inspire for your artwork. Look at the shapes, colours and style of the abstract pieces. Get a feel for the design-- psychedelic art tends to use wavy, lines, elongated shapes and a warped perspective. Or it can contain brightly coloured geometrical patterns.

  2. Plan the drawing on your paper. Choose one simple object; such as a mushroom, strawberry or eye to practice drawing the style. First, draw the general outline of the object in the middle of the page. Now, imagine the object has been blown sideways or stretched so it becomes warped. Sketch these lines around the original outline.

  3. Create a pattern on the background of the paper. Do this by creating a web of pattern such as stripes, lopsided squares or circles. This gives a striking and obscure backdrop to the object.

  4. Divide the shape into small sections. Each section will be a different colour, so this helps you plan where to add each one. It can be divided up into small or large portions, depending on your individual artistic flair. For example, if are drawing a mushroom, add a six to eight circles on the mushroom head, and a number of stripes, too.

  5. Colour in the psychedelic art. Use bright contrasting and complementary colours. Use your imagination to create an abstract colour scheme. Neon green, yellow, pink and orange would be ideal colours to use as they are striking and bold, just like psychedelic artwork. If you are drawing a checkered design, choose two contrasting colours and alternate them between each shape.

  6. Develop your skills by experimenting with different designs. For example, repeat geometric shapes, use symmetry and asymmetry, horizontal or vertical lines. Copy designs that you like to get used to the alternative styles, then develop your own individual image.

  7. Tip

    Create an optical illusion using a psychedelic design. Use concentric circles, movement and balance in your artwork to give it an additional abstract edge.

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Things You'll Need

  • Examples of psychedelic art
  • Pencil
  • Paper
  • Brightly coloured pencils

About the Author

Verity Jones is an English literature graduate who has been writing for over five years. Her work has been featured in local publications, national parenting magazines and online portals such as You and Your Family, and Mum Plus One. Jones holds a qualification in interior design.

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