Why Using a Drawing Board Makes a Difference & How to Choose One

If you are new to the drawing world, you may be wondering if purchasing a drawing board is really necessary. Well, if you want to produce high-quality drawings, then the answer to your question is, yes. A good art drawing board is the foundation of practising art.

A drawing board is a kind of multi-purpose art desk that can be used for sketching, drawing, inking, and technical drawings. Generally, these boards are used at an angle with clips to hold the paper in place, which helps prevent paper damage. With a drawing board, you can draw on your paper freely as it will be clipped to the drawing board, without moving around. This, in turn, helps prevent drawing accidental lines or tears that could happen otherwise while holding the paper with your hand.

Not only that but because there are drawing boards made of strong surfaces, your drawing tools won’t accidentally rip through the paper. This is something that can happen when you draw on a very soft and squishy surface. But these are not the only benefits of using a drawing board.

No Botched Proportions

For a small art piece, drawing flat on top of a table while seated may work fine. However, as the size of your drawing increases, you can unintentionally introduce incorrect proportions into your drawing. The reason why this happens is that the top of your drawing will be physically farther from your eyes, fooling you into drawing elements larger towards the top of your paper (farther objects look smaller).

With a drawing board, you can prop up your drawing so that it’s perpendicular to your line of sight. Using any other angles may result in incorrect proportion in your artwork. Thanks to this type of board, you can practice drawing correct proportions.

No Ghostly Lines

When you draw directly in your drawing pad, you are drawing on many layers of paper. These many layers of paper are a fairly soft drawing surface and will develop depressions as you draw. The grooves in the other layers of paper show up later as ghostly white lines when you shade your drawing in. Drawing boards help minimalise the amount of ghostly white lines in your finished drawings.

drawing board

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Improved Comfort

Once your drawing paper is secured to the board’s surface you can work at any angle you want, not just flat as if you were confined to an office desk. With the board in hand, you can take your artwork anywhere and easily get comfortable!

How to Pick a Drawing Board?

Before you choose a board you need to know why you are getting it. Obviously, it’s for drawing, but what type of drawing? Are you a beginner working in graphite? Or do you need unfinished charcoal work to be finished with this board? Do you need a lightweight board for travel or would you prefer a heavier board that you can mount on an easel? Estimating your goals and considering what type of drawing work you’ll be doing will help you choose a board that best suit your needs.

Portable Drawing Boards

If you want a board that is simple and easy to carry around to class, to the park, or just anywhere around the house, this is the drawing board you need. It’s a very simple drawing board with clips on the top and a rubber band on the bottom. Its surface is incredibly smooth and you can rotate it around as needed.

Although the clips are not removable on this kind of board, they really don’t get in the way. When drawing on an A4 format paper, there should be plenty of empty space left. Plus, you can orientate the board so the clips lie to the other side of your drawing hand, so your elbow never bumps into them. Newer artists like the freedom to try stuff and just draw. This type of board grants that freedom.

Adjustable Drawing Board

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Adjustable Drawing Board

As its name suggests, this board is adjustable, allowing you to set it on the table at different angles according to your preferences. This drawing board is also considered portable as it can easily be moved from one place to another without much trouble. As it folds in on itself, you can use it as an extra flat base if you want, or when you’re done with using it, you can quickly pack it away.

Adjustable boards for drawing can be 65 cm x 47 cm or 35 cm x 47 cm in size, which means there is plenty of room for any piece of paper or sketch pad you might use. Generally made from beech wood and treated to a clean finish, the drawing surface of this board is incredibly smooth, you won’t have any issues with nicks or holes in your artwork.

Drawing Table

A drawing table is like a big desk that you can draw on. So, if you are looking to work on a big project where you need a very large piece of paper, or if you prefer to work standing up, consider getting a drawing table.

Making the Final Decision

Considering that art drawing boards are generally affordable, you won’t risk much by just grabbing one. As long as you know what you are looking for and why you are getting a board, you shouldn’t have trouble picking the right one. At first, you may feel drawing on the board a kind of awkward, but the more you practice, the more comfortable your board will feel.